Devon school lollipop patrols reprieved
Posted on: 1 March 2016
Devon County Council leader John Hart has shelved plans to ask schools to pay for their own lollipop men and women after reviewing representations from families across the county.
The authority had planned to save £250,000 as part of its £26 million budget cuts for 2016/17.
But, since the budget meeting earlier this month, Mr Hart has received considerably more feedback from Devon families and schools than in either of the formal public consultations on the issue last year.
Councillors were set to debate what measures could be put in place to improve road safety when the patrols were withdrawn at a scrutiny meeting on Monday.
Those measures could have included the installation of traffic lights or zebra crossings.
Mr Hart said: “We are required by law to set our budget by the end of February and achieve the savings imposed on us by the Government.
“We continue to face tough choices on our budget in Devon due to the austerity cuts but I welcome this further discussion of the issue by scrutiny
“Since the Budget meeting on February 18, I have been contacted by hundreds of parents and grandparents – far more than took part in the two public consultations last year.
“I have listened to these families and all the other people, including schools, who have been in contact to say: ‘Please keep our patrols’.
“I have heard from a lot of mums and dads who were deeply worried about their children’s safety and obviously that is paramount.
“On reflection, I believe this was the wrong decision. Our budget is extremely tight but we will now find the money to fund the lollipop ladies and men.
“And I want to reassure all the people who have been in contact that – whilst I remain leader of this administration at County Hall – I will not re-introduce this measure.”
Posted in: Environment