Ever since the people of Essex returned the Conservatives to power at Essex County Council in 2013 we have been striving to continue our plans to deliver excellent services at value for money against a backdrop of falling income.
We fully back the Government’s plans to reduce the heavy national debt the last Labour Government left us all with and the rewards of the austerity measures introduced by George Osbourne a now starting to work and the economy is growing once again; while others in Europe are still in financial difficulties and are seeing their economies stalling at best.
We at County Hall have played our part in these austerity measures and have seen our income from our central Government grant fall dramatically in recent years and predicted to reduce into the near future. In old fashion terms we have had to cut our cloth according to our means.
Despite all this we have ensured that front line services are protected and other services delivered in a slightly different way by engaging local communities to be more activity involved as it once used to be with everyone pulling together.
Many of you will have seen the extensive road repairs, redressing and resurfacing that is taking place to bring our roads up to standard. In a world where we have to make difficult choices over funding, the highways remains one of our top priorities and we have put extra money into this area. We are now turning our attention to smaller roads, kerbsides and paving. It takes time to cover the vast county of Essex but without the prudent financial expertise that we Conservatives bring then none of this would probably have happened.
Essex Conservatives don’t deal in rhetoric – we deal in actions!
It has always been our political ambition to ensure that when the recession started to turn and the UK economy improved then Essex would be ahead of the curve – and we are at the forefront of that recovery.
Our number of young people Not in Education, Employment or Training (NEETS) is falling, our number of unemployed people is falling while our businesses are growing – Essex is well placed for economic growth. .
However, we are not complacent and there is much more to do and we, your Conservative Councillors not only have the plans to succeed, we are succeeding.
Essex is a great place to work, live and visit! The Conservatives are pledged to keep it that way!
Cllr David Finch
Leader, Essex County Council Conservative Group