Highway asset management policy


This policy applies to the creation/construction, acquisition, operation, maintenance, rehabilitation and disposal of all Council Highway Assets.

Policy objectives

This policy guides the management of Council’s Assets to ensure that:

  • Assets continue to deliver a service to the community at an agreed level of service.
  • There is clear direction for staff to make informed decisions.
  • Legislative requirements are satisfied.
  • Exposure to risk is limited to acceptable levels.
  • Clear allocations of responsibilities for the management of each class of asset are given.


  • Assets: Any physical item on the Public Highway that Council acquires or constructs which gives benefit or service to the community.
  • Asset Register: A record of asset information considered worthy of separate identification.
  • Asset Life: Time from acquisition to disposal.
  • Asset Management: Activities and practices through which Council optimally manages its physical assets over their lifecycle for the purpose of achieving the organisational strategic plan.
  • Asset Management Plan: A plan that details financial and technical treatments over the life of the asset to allow the asset to maintain an agreed level of service.
  • Level of Service: The service standard set for an asset group/type.
  • Whole Life Costs: Total cost of an asset over its entire life including Capital, Maintenance and Disposal Expenditure.
  • Capital Expenditure: Any expenditure that is used to procure or construct: a new asset, upgrade the capability of an asset, make improvements to an asset, make additions to an asset or replace an asset
  • Revenue/ Maintenance Expenditure: Any expenditure that allows an asset to continue providing the agreed level of service until the end of life is reached.

Policy details

1. Asset planning

  • Council will adopt an asset management planning approach for the management of infrastructure assets including the application of life cycle cost analysis
  • Wherever possible predictive modelling will be used to develop and implement preventative maintenance programs to ensure lowest life cycle costs.

2. Community expectations

  • All road/highway infrastructure services will be regularly reviewed to ascertain the community level of service expectations.
  • Council will seek and value community input regarding desirable infrastructure before projects are commissioned for Asset planning investigations.
  • Council will regularly review its asset inventory and identify opportunities for rationalisation in line with community requirements.

3. Risk assessment and management

  • Council will maintain a programme of regular inspections of assets to minimise risk to the community.
  • The Council will maintain and regularly review a Highway Asset Risk Register that will identify the risks associated with the council’s Highway infrastructure and record the controls in place to manage them.
  • Maintenance and capital work to assets will be allocated in line with the council’s risk management policy.

4. Asset accounting

  • Council will maintain asset registers to the level of detail required to meet the requirements of the CIPFA Transport Infrastructure Asset Code.
  • Useful lives shall be determined and given to each asset group/type or component based on past experience and current benchmarked standards.
  • Annual Depreciation costs will be calculated using a method set out in the transport asset valuation procedure and reported annually with gross replacement and depreciated replacement cost figures.

5. Budget allocation

The Council budgets for Highways including the funding for all asset purchase, maintenance, rehabilitation and replacement shall be guided by Council’s Highway Asset Management Plan.

The allocation of budgets (capital and revenue) will be reviewed annually taking into account the status of each asset and the level of service achieved in the preceding year(s) shown in the annual status and options report.

A rolling programme of proposed capital works will be produced and maintained linked to the Highway Asset Management Plan and long term financial plans.

6. Highway Asset Management Plan (HAMP)

  • Council will develop a multiyear Highway Asset Management Plan covering all the councils Highway Assets including roads (carriageways), footways, street lights, structures, drainage and street furniture.
  • Asset Management Plans shall define the management strategies to be adopted throughout the life cycle of the asset.
  • The Asset Management Plan will set out for each asset group/type
    • Predicted future changes in demand
    • Levels of service required
    • The investment required in the maintenance, renewal and replacement of assets required to meet the levels of service
    • Methods of performance monitoring and appraisal.
    • Financial projections
    • The risks associated with the plan

7. Highway maintenance manual

  • The Council will maintain a manual detailing how Highway maintenance is carried out.
  • The Highway maintenance manual defines how and when we:
    • Inspect
    • Categorise and prioritise reactive repairs
    • Assess condition
    • Identify and prioritise sites for renewal or replacement
    • Choose the materials used
    • Prepare works programmes
    • Procure and manage works
    • Record and report costs
    • Record and respond to customer contacts

8. Reporting

  • The council will prepare an annual status and options report that summarises
    • The status of each asset group in terms of its condition and the council’s ability to meet its reactive repair standards
    • The result of the previous year’s investment in terms of meeting the target
      service standards.
    • The options available for the future in term of both short and long term predictions of levels of defects and condition that can be afforded for different budget levels
  • Regular meetings of the Highway Asset Management (HAM) Board will take place throughout the year. These will be used to monitor progress and financial commitments, approve programmes and drive the implementation of Asset Management.
  • When the annual budget is set any amendment to the service standards specified in the asset management plan will be made, and once approved by the HAM Board an updated asset management plan will be published.

9. Roles And responsibilities


  • To act as custodians of community assets.
  • To set corporate asset management policy with linkage to Council’s Corporate Plan.
  • To set agreed Levels of Service and Levels of Acceptable Risk for each asset class.
  • To allocate budgets to achieve the levels set.
  • To ensure appropriate resources for Asset Management activities are made

Managing Director / Corporate Management Team

  • To provide strategic direction and leadership.
  • To ensure there is continuous improvement in asset management.
  • To review existing policies and develop new policies related to asset management.
  • To implement Corporate Asset Management Strategies with agreed resources.
  • To monitor and review managers and staff in achieving the Asset Management Strategy.
  • To ensure accurate and reliable asset information is presented to Council.

Managers and staff

  • To implement the Asset management policy and plan with agreed resources.
  • To develop and implement improvement plans for individual asset groups.
  • To develop and implement Maintenance and Capital Works programs in accordance with Asset Management Plan and budgets
  • To deliver levels of service to agreed risk and cost standards.
  • To present information to the Council, Managing Director and Corporate Management team in terms of life cycle risks and costs
  • To seek community feedback on proposed changes to service levels.

Highway Asset Management Board

  • An Asset Management Board will be established to assist and have input with strategic asset management planning.
  • Staff responsibilities for Asset Management activities shall be included in the Asset Management Plan and also be reflected in individual position descriptions.
Last updated on 20/10/2021