A FURIOUS councillor is renewing calls for a “Bas-exit” after fresh plans to address Essex’s plague of potholes has seen Basildon placed bottom of the pile.

Essex County Council has outlined a new member-led pothole programme which invites councillors to highlight the potholes in their ward most in-need of urgent repairs.

But the current proposals would see any potholes nominated in Basildon repaired once others around Essex have been fixed.

Indpendent Basildon councillor, Kerry Smith, has been left furious by the plans ,and insists it is an example of why Basildon must break away from County Hall.

Mr Smith, who represents Nethermayne, said: “Basildon is the second biggest economy on the River Thames and we pay Essex County Council £85 million a year as a borough in business rates and council tax.

“No other borough or district local authority pays County Hall as much as Basildon.

“In essence, we pay County Hall first class, and get a third-class service.

“It is time for Basildon to break away from County Hall and make Bas-Exit a reality.”

A breakaway from County Hall would mean issues such as highways repairs were transferred to Basildon Council.

Pauline Missing, 68, has also raised concerns after her first-hand experience of the dangers of potholes when her sister tripped on one and suffered bruising and cuts to her face.

Pauline said: “By not repairing potholes, they are putting people in and also vehicles in danger. They fail to do what is right and fix them.”

A spokesperson for Essex Highways said: “Over recent years all county members have been offered specific opportunities to identify and nominate a number of road defects that they and their local communities have most wished to see repaired.

“These schemes have enabled members to complete additional repairs locally that may have otherwise fallen outside of the usual risk-assessed, asset-led policy we use to identify the works requiring urgent attention.

“We have planned and will implement the efficient delivery of the repairs across the county in a fair and consistent manner. Unfortunately, it is not possible to place every district at the start of the programme.”