(1) The report considered proposals to speed up the Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) process by delegating the consideration of non-controversial objections to TRO’s, where the local County Councillor was in full support of the proposal to the Director of Highways and Transportation for consideration. It set out the process and procedures the Director would have to follow when considering the objections.
(2) The Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 gave traffic authorities the powers to make TRO’s for various reasons which were set out in the report. Typically, TRO’s took the form of prohibitions or restrictions such as speed limits, weight & width limits, prohibition of driving or of motor vehicles, prohibited or prescribed movements, parking restrictions etc. A TRO could be proposed on its own or as part of a scheme.
(3) When a traffic authority wished to make a TRO it must follow a statutory procedure which was set out in The Local Authorities' Traffic Orders (Procedure) (England and Wales) Regulations 1996. The procedure required the traffic authority to consult any persons likely to be affected by the restrictions or prohibitions to be imposed by the Order. The authority must publish a notice in a local paper and carry out other provisions to ensure adequate publicity for the proposal such as writing to affected parties or posting notices on the road where the TRO was being proposed. The traffic authority then must allow a minimum of 21 days for stakeholders to make comments on the proposal and, if they wished, formally object.
(4) Current KCC procedures when objections were received were to report them to the local Joint Transportation Board for the relevant area. The Board was typically asked to make a recommendation to the Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways & Waste on whether to proceed with the scheme notwithstanding the objections; implement the proposal with modifications, or abandon the proposal. If no objections were received to a TRO then the Director of Highways & Transportation already had delegated authority to proceed with making the Order as proposed.
(5) The main issue with the current procedure was the time it could take for a decision to be made when objections were received to a TRO. As stated, the traffic authority was legally required to consult when proposing a TRO. When added to the time it took to design a scheme, consult and then report to a local Joint Transportation Board, which were only held every three months, it could take six to nine months to make an order for a very simple proposal such as a few metres of double yellow lines.
(6) Following the statutory consultation if five or fewer objections were received and the local County Councillor was in full support of proceeding with the proposal, a report would be submitted to the Director of Highways and Transportation requesting authorisation for the Order to be made. The Director would carefully consider the matter and if he was not happy to authorise the making of the Order it ... view the full minutes text for item 38