Acting as a family

In my first column for first, I want to reiterate my thanks to the Conservative local government family for supporting my nomination to be the new Leader of the Conservative Group at the LGA.

As I made clear in my remarks following my election at the LGA’s annual conference in early July, alongside our new Deputy Leader, Cllr Abi Brown, we will work tirelessly to rebuild the Conservative local government family. 

We will act as a family, work as a family, and win as a family. 

All those great Conservative councillors whom we lost in May – we will simply get them back and add to their number.

Acting as a family means working with our partners in government on an equal footing. 

The LGA Conservative Group has, for many years, been lobbying hard for funding for local government to be more streamlined, recognising that applying for separate pots of grant funding is becoming a resource and capacity issue for several local authorities. 

We very much welcome, therefore, the decision to implement some of our calls. 

The plans, which were released by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and confirmed by Secretary of State Michael Gove MP at the LGA’s conference, include the creation of a new ‘simplification pathfinder pilot’ to test capital funding delivery across some local authorities. 

In addition, there will be changes to the Levelling Up Fund, Town Deals and Future High Streets Fund, which will give councils more flexibility around altering projects.

When the Conservatives work together as a family, irrespective of roles and positions, we can achieve great things for the communities that we were elected to serve.  

As your new group leaders at the LGA, Abi and I will be making it clear that councillors are instrumental to many MPs being in the positions they are in and, therefore, we want to see a more defined relationship between MPs and local councillors. 

If you have any issues you would like to discuss with me, my door is always open.


Making the future local

Challenging ourselves to be even better