ONE has to smile at the local Conservative strategy of saying how well Cheshire East Council is doing since they lost control in May 2019, but claiming that somehow this is all down to them. I am strangely pleased that the Conservatives complain that the new administration’s plans include investing ‘only’ £1.5m to tackle climate change; this is £1.5m more than the Conservatives committed in their last budget and their complaints show that they are finally recognising that climate change is the greatest challenge facing our generation.

At the December council meeting the Conservatives supported the proposal to increase council tax on properties that had been empty for more than five years and reduce the council tax exemption given to landlords of empty properties to four weeks, despite having opposed the same suggestion in February 2019 when they were in control.

The new measures, which are both commitments in the local Labour manifesto at, will help to reduce the number of empty properties in Cheshire East.

The only proposal the Conservatives objected to at the December council meeting was to move the day and time of council meetings, despite a survey of councillors already having strongly supported the proposals and the matter having been debated for hours at previous meetings; the Conservative councillors, who were outvoted after an unnecessarily lengthy debate, showed that they are more concerned about matters relating to themselves than those related to local residents.

The new Labour/Independent administration at Cheshire East Council is working well and is delivering improvements for the benefit of residents of Cheshire East.

S.A.M. Corcoran MA(Oxon), FCA, CTA (Fellow) Labour & Co-operative Councillor for Sandbach Heath & East