For a number of years Kent County Council has allowed sponsors to advertise on roundabouts in Kent.
Counties such as Surrey use advertising as a means to directly enhance roundabouts with additional planting and regular maintenance, Kent has no such scheme.
In Maidstone for example, where the majority of roundabouts sit on prime entry roads for visitors to our county town, shrubs and trees are typically choked by grass and weeds. Beyond some low level grass cutting, there is minimal maintenance and there have been no new planting programs for many years.
Does the cabinet member agree that a change in policy is needed, to allow local businesses to sponsor roundabouts, generating landscaping funding which will once again allow us to give a proper Kentish welcome to the thousands of visitors to towns across the county?
Roundabout sponsorship is managed by Kent Commercial Services, and the income made from this is returned to KCC Finance as part of its annual dividend payment. Spending more money on roundabout maintenance would mean another area of spend would need to be reduced. However I am willing to look again at the arrangements for roundabout maintenance, and the scope for a more direct linkage between encouraging greater sponsorship and maintaining roundabouts to a higher, more presentable standard in future.