Has your Council considered the policy options for built up area speed limits recently? Scrutiny is when back bench Councillors research best practice. It’ll find wide-area 20mph limits can save society millions in injuries, physical activity levels and air pollution. Here’s an ‘oven ready’ 20mph topic scoping template. Please do submit it today by email via your council’s democratic services.
Title: 20mph Scrutiny Topic Submission (look for the template scrutiny suggestion form to cut and paste this into on your council website or ask democratic services or a friendly councillor to do so).
Issue/Problem to be Addressed: Endorsing 30mph on residential and community streets doubles stopping distance and energy required from 0mph compared to 20mph with little tangible benefit. This authority has road crash victims who would either have avoided injury or been less badly injured if road speeds were lower. There is pollution, congestion and an inactive population, at least partly due to excessive road speed risks. This council aims to raise quality of life, especially for the vulnerable on the 80% of public space that comprises roads in built up areas. With WHO recognising that 20mph is the right speed limit where people and motor vehicles mix the council have a duty to objectively consider a default 20mph policy.
Scope: Scrutiny will consider three policy options
- Do nothing – policy as now
- Limited 20mph schemes as/when requested by residents/transport department/new developments
- Default 20mph limits for most urban and built up areas with agreed exceptions. To agree criteria for exceptions, an optimal implementation plan, driver engagement marketing, funding and timescales.
Expert evidence: To search out evidence in reports or question stakeholders e.g. Cabinet member, officers, Director of Public Health, Atkins report on 20mph for the DfT, police, WHO, Association of Directors of Public Health, Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, local transport and disability campaigners/organisations, local and national 20’s Plenty Campaign and international 20mph expert Rod King MBE.
Anna Semlyen, 20’s Plenty for Us National Campaign Manager and former Scrutiny Chair for the Transport related scrutiny at City of York Council commented:
“Transport departments are short staffed. Yet, scrutiny can command the resources to fully consider and refine workable options for road speed policies. They can even call in experts cross- departmentally, from the community and nationally. I strongly urge back bench Councillors to submit a 20mph topic to scrutiny today. 20mph is best practice. The Cabinet and Director of Public Health will then be empowered with evidence to recognise that 20mph is best for everyone, especially the vulnerable – and fits with their Duty of Care”
For more details on scrutiny see pg 3 of http://smk.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Influencing-decision-makers.pdf 20mph scrutinies http://www.20splenty.org/how_scrutiny_panels_endorse_20mph_limits
It’s wise to lobby members of the transport related scrutiny panel to pick the 20mph topic (they probably only do 2-3 topics pa). This means asking them to vote for that topic. Their names and emails will be on your Council’s website – or ask your democratic services department for help. Good luck!