Friday, 20 December 2013

A Merry Christmas to all

All in all it has been quite a week one way and another.

On Monday I met with Paul Cobbing, Chief Executive of the National Flood Forum. We have been working closely with the Forum over the last year, and my meeting came as a result of talking with Paul in October at the Flood Event we held in Littlehampton together with partners.

The National Flood Forum provides a wide range of useful information about flooding. This time last year we had serious flooding in West Sussex and I know many residents found their website had very helpful information. If you’d like to find out more, there is lots of useful information on flooding on the County Council website as well.

Working with partners like the National Flood Forum is key to helping our residents, and the meeting was extremely useful.

This week also saw the announcement by the Airports Commission on airport expansion, where Gatwick Airport has been given the opportunity to go forward with their expansion plans to the next phase.

Whilst we welcome this news as it would be a boost to the economy, we do know that some residents, particularly those who will be directly affected, are not at all pleased. The County Council's position is to support expansion, but we need to ensure the environmental impacts are minimised and we must address the surface access issues. This leads me onto my meeting with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) on Thursday morning where, together with the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, we had a productive and useful meeting with officials to discuss these issues along with A27 improvements.

Next week is Christmas week. The County Council does not close down but runs over the holiday period, the Emergency Management Team are on stand-by, along with teams helping and protecting children as well as adults, and throughout that time services will continue to be delivered.

Our road gritters are also on standby if the weather gets colder, and our waste recycling team have 12 days of Christmas tips for dealing with the waste that is generated at this time of year.

So may I wish you all a very peaceful and happy Christmas and may 2014 be kind to you.

Best wishes,

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