Today is polling day here and across Britain.
Local Government and policing are extremely important for our local area, our communities and the Workington constituency.
That is why over the past few weeks, I have been out and about around the constituency speaking to constituents, informally in their gardens, as they are walking their dogs or chatting to their neighbours. I have been supporting the Conservative candidates in by-election wards for both Allerdale Borough Council, Cumbria County Council and Workington Town Council.
I have also been out in other areas of my constituency supporting Peter McCall the Police and Crime Commissioner. Peter has been an outstanding Police and Crime Commissioner for this county. With record number of officers in Cumbria and 60 more set to come this year, more deployment hubs around the county, more officers in our towns and villages and more CCTV - Peter has worked extremely hard to cut crime in Cumbria.
I was pleased to welcome the Home Secretary to Calvert Trust in my constituency last week and it is clear that Peter works extremely well with the Conservative Government and that his work is respected both in and outside of the county.
Conservative-led Allerdale Borough Council has worked tirelessly through the pandemic, supporting our local businesses and communities. In addition, work has continued to bring investment into our towns and communities. Workington’s Town Deal - £24 million investment from the Conservative Government - and improvements to road infrastructure at Bothel are just a small number of investments in my constituency.
Under Conservative leadership, Allerdale Borough Council invests in our communities – with recent investment into the new Seaton Scout Hut, support for Cockermouth traders, and our new, sustainable, responsibly-financed Allerdale Community Sports Village being prime examples.
It’s hard to believe that it’s just two years since ‘Bin Chaos’ across Allerdale – but this Conservative council has brought waste services back in-house, delivering flexibility for residents, and reversing Labour’s tide of outsourcing, that in many cases failed to deliver efficiencies for council taxpayers, and we saw first-hand it’s inflexibility.
Council Tax in Allerdale has remained the lowest in the county. Indeed, Labour and the Independents on Cumbria County Council voted to increase their share of council tax by £60 for a Band D property – raising £9.5m but failing to spend a penny of it on your roads or social care. In fact, they’re squirrelling £10m away – rendering the tax rise on hard-pressed taxpayers completely unnecessary.
The Conservatives voted against this and will continue to stand for keeping tax low whilst protecting frontline services.
Progress is clearly being made but I know that there is still more to do. We must not take our foot off the pedal. By voting for Conservative council candidates, you ensure that these changes are delivered faster. The election of Conservative councillors - working for your community with a Conservative Council, alongside a Conservative MP, supported by a Conservative Government - will ensure that our towns and communities prosper.