A backlog of road repairs in Powys now stands at £40m according to a report which went before the county council this week.

The council's highways and transport portfolio has a budget of just £9.22m for highways and structural maintenance, but this is set to fall by 70% by 2020/21 to just £2,720,000, the report says.

The Highway Infrastructure Capital Programme report brought before portfolio holder Phyl Davies offers recommended options for the allocation of funding for the Highways service area.

"The backlog of work across the highway network exceeds £40 million. The range of options for allocating expenditure across work categories is therefore considerable," said Adrian Jervis, Acting Head of Highways, Transport and Recycling, in the report.

"As part of the Medium Term Financial Plan, Cabinet at their meeting of the 7th February 2017 approved budget of £3.95m each year for three years, totalling an investment in the highways infrastructure of £11.85m. This will be the second year of the investment and will continue to be targeted at improving the condition of the highway network."

Powys County Council maintains around 3,500 miles of roads, including many narrow country lanes, across an area of almost 3000 square miles, more than any other local authority in Wales. It also manages 1,697 bridges and culverts and 75 footbridges.

The council's preferred option would see core funding of £1.5 million allocated to resurfacing, town centre footways, bridge strengthening, major structure maintenance, drainage, remedial earthworks, road safety and traffic management.

A sum of £1.12 million would be made available for the structural maintenance of roads to mitigate the effects of reduced revenue funding, to be targeted at "prioritised sites" throughout the county. The report also confirmed that a one-off payment of £2.371m has been made available for road repairs by the Welsh Government.

The report also confirmed that major traffic schemes would be placed on hold to enable the council to focus on maintenance programmes, unless they unlocked significant funding or were funding externally.

The report continues: "The entire budget has identifiable funding sources and is part of the Council’s 5-year Capital Investment Strategy which was approved by Council on 22 April 2018.

"There are no further financial implications with the approval of the recommendations at this stage. The Finance team will continue to monitor the project as part of the monthly budget monitoring process and report any exceptions to Council/Cabinet."

The highways report was due to go before portfolio holder Phyl Davies on Thursday, August 16.