As Conservatives we believe completely in putting residents and taxpayers first and while we are elected to represent you with everyday issues we also must look to the future to ensure we are planning sustainable communities that meet the needs of us today and our children and grandchildren in the decades to come.
This is the ethos on how we run the County Council and I feel that is whey we were so successful at the County elections in May which gave us an increased majority. We are never complacent but the new majority is helpful because we are using it to bring you even better services.
Many of you will know that because of the need to pay down the national debt the public sector has had to make savings. Local Government has taken probably the largest reduction in grants from Government. The money you pay us in Council Tax covers about 27 per cent of our costs to run services and the rest is made up with grants from central Government. It is this central grant that has been reduced. We have faced huge financial challenges.
However, we take no issue with this because it is vital we pay back the billions borrowed in the past because we must absolutely not hand this debt on to the next generation. In Essex we have taken out more than £600 million from our budget. This has been done by savings but more importantly through working differently and smartly.
New technologies enable us to deliver many services differently and efficiently not just to us as taxpayers but more importantly to those receiving services.
I will be asking my Cabinet colleagues to regularly update this blog to highlight just how we as Conservatives are continuing to deliver for you the people!
Cllr David Finch, Leader of Essex County Council