George Nobbs, Labour Group Leader for Norfolk County Council, introduces our manifesto for the 2017 elections.
“All political parties will tell you that they want to make things better. From 2013 to 2016, the Labour-led alliance running County Hall did just that – it made things better. Labour led the turnaround in reputation, standards and eﬀectiveness after Norfolk voters rejected the Conservative administration that had presided over years of decline. Since the Green Party handed back control of Norfolk County Council to the Tories in May 2016, standards have declined, stagnation has set in and performance is being undermined.
For three years, we showed that Norfolk could be better – but that’s not enough. Government funding cuts put huge pressure on the people of Norfolk and the services their councils provide. Norfolk has the capacity and ability to succeed. Labour is asking you to vote to help us make Norfolk ‘The Best’.
Making Norfolk ‘The Best’ means making best use of all the talents and resources we have – cross-party and across all sections of our population residents in the interests of everyone in the county. The Conservatives refused to work with the alliance which we created. Despite this, we managed to bring together people of widely diﬀerent and often clashing views for the common good. Those diﬀerences will endure but the common good, especially in uncertain times, must be put above narrow interests.
The problems we inherited from the previous Tory administration are well documented – our children were being let down; Adult Social Services were under severe strain; there were unprecedented government cuts to our funding;there was on-going controversy over a £700 million waste incinerator project in Kings Lynn.
Today, our Norfolk schools are well above average – not propping up the national league tables. Our residential homes and care service are a source of pride with excellent residential facilities such as the Bowthorpe Care Village in Norwich and the Lydia Eva complex in Gorleston. We handled massive government cuts whilst defending frontline services. We’ve protected our most vulnerable residents and cancelled the massively expensive and divisive incinerator project. We made a priority of Economic Development by promoting investment and new high-quality jobs (moving Norfolk away from a seasonal work and zero hours economy). We completed the dualling of the A11. In addition, we didn’t close a single Fire Station, museum, library or Children’s Centre.
I’m proud of what we did together for Norfolk and disappointed the Green Party denied Norfolk the beneﬁts of a fourth year of progress by allowing the Tories to return to power.
Norfolk doesn’t have to lag behind or settle for promises of jam tomorrow. Labour in Norfolk wants to build a great future for jobs, education, social care and quality of life. Labour in Norfolk will work with those who will help make this pledge a reality. It means working together for your future. What would you prefer – needing to do better or being the best?”
Follow links on the right handside (below on a mobile) to learn more about Labour’s five pledges for Norfolk.