County Council Leader sets out his priorities

Paul Marshall has been re-elected as West Sussex County Council Leader for another four years


Released: Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Paul Marshall has set out his priorities over the next four years after his re-election as West Sussex County Council Leader on Friday, 21 May 2021.

Councillor Marshall (Storrington) said: “Since I first became Leader in October 2019, our lives have all changed dramatically and in ways none of us could have expected. Despite many challenges, we’ve made improvements across the council that have had a positive difference for all our residents. I am proud to continue to serve West Sussex with a clear vision for the next four years as we continue our council’s journey of improvement.

“My priorities are captured in Our Council Plan, the corporate plan for 2021 to 2025, and the budget. The plan covers everything from education to highways, from community support to the fire service, and provides stability across the organisation. Within the wide-reaching strategy, the main four priorities are keeping people safe from vulnerable situations; creating a sustainable and prosperous economy; helping people and communities to fulfil their potential; and making the best use of resources. All of this is underpinned by the cross-cutting theme of climate change, which is a major and urgent pressure at both a local and global level. Here in West Sussex we live in one of the most beautiful parts of the country, as I am always reminded when walking my dogs on the South Downs, and we want to keep it that way for future generations to enjoy.

“Speaking of global impact, the pandemic has been a tragedy that we’ve been responding to for more than a year now. Covid-19 will continue to dominate our actions as we move forward with hope of better times to come. My heart goes out to all those who have been affected, we have lost so many loved ones. As an organisation, we are doing all we can, working with our partners, to prevent the spread of the virus and save lives.

“On Friday I appointed my Cabinet, selecting the councillors who will work closely with me to deliver our aims. In my new Cabinet team, there is a strong mix of experienced Cabinet members as well as some new faces who will bring a fresh perspective to all we do. I have placed a particular Cabinet focus on public health and wellbeing to emphasise my commitment in this area. I’ve also strengthened our focus on adult social care, which is key to helping people stay independent for as long as possible, again giving a positive wellbeing outcome for some whose voices are not always heard.

“I will work tirelessly to ensure the success of our county economically as the country recovers and Covid-19 becomes something we find a way to live alongside. it is critical that we stimulate the local economy to ensure that employment is boosted while we also look at re-skilling our workforce to take up the opportunities of new jobs. Again, tackling climate change has an important role and we are working on a sustainable economic future for the county. My deputy leader, Deborah Urquhart, has the Cabinet role of Environment and Climate Change to keep this at the heart of everything we do.

“I know that West Sussex is extremely capable of bouncing back from the dreadful pandemic we are still living through and building back better. Our people and our communities are always our biggest asset. In my role as council leader I will do everything in my power to help everyone in our county thrive and grow for a better future.”

• The full list of Cabinet, Chairman and Vice Chairman appointments made at Full Council can be read on our website.

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