Time to focus on domestic issues

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the many thousands of Conservative councillors throughout the country whose tireless campaigning during the General Election, often in horrendous weather, played such a key role in securing the election of a majority Conservative Government and our best result since 1987.

The Brexit gridlock will be broken, and we can focus on the many other issues that need addressing

This campaign confirmed what we have always known: that Conservative councillors are the backbone of the voluntary party, that they play a key role in grassroots campaigning and that they are the voice of Conservativism in their local communities.

Around 100 Conservative councillors contested this election and I am delighted that a significant number were elected as MPs, including our own LGA Deputy Chairman, Cllr David Simmonds.

I have written to all our newly elected MPs who are councillors to congratulate them on their successes, and the LGA Conservative Group will be doing all that we can to support them as they embark on their Parliamentary careers. 

With a majority of 80, the Brexit gridlock of the past three and a half years will now be broken and we can begin to focus on the many other issues that need to be addressed, including getting more homes built, putting social care on a sustainable long-term financial footing and giving children and young people the best possible start in life.

As such, I was delighted that the Queen’s Speech, which was published just before Christmas, brought forward proposals on a range of key issues for local government, including business rates, health and social care, building safety, infrastructure, preventing serious violence and domestic abuse and protecting the environment.

The provisional local government finance settlement was also published before Parliament went into recess, and as first was going to press.

After such an eventful political year, I am sure that, like me, you were looking forward to a break over the festive period and I would like to take this opportunity to wish you a belated happy new year.

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