New Leader of Cheshire East

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Councillor Michael Jones has been elected as the new Leader of Cheshire East Council.

The Conservative, who represents Bunbury Ward, headed the poll with a large majority at a meeting of Full Council yesterday (Wednesday, May 16). He received 48 of the 73 votes cast.

Councillor Jones will now chair the Cabinet. He is also the leader of the Conservative Group and was elected as a Councillor to the unitary authority in May 2011.

Upon election as Leader, Cllr Jones offered the Borough's rival political parties the opportunity for a new era of working in partnership — for the benefit of all the people of  Cheshire East.

He said: "This is a time for us to put Cheshire East first. We want to be inclusive — include more people and work together to drive Cheshire East forward into a new dawn.

He added today: "I would like to thank Cllr Fitzgerald for the excellent legacy he has left for me to take forward. It has been a pleasure working with him and I am thoroughly looking forward to building on his good work.

"I am honoured and proud to have the confidence of my party group and Council members and be elected to lead Cheshire East.

"My Cabinet has a core of the same strong, experienced and committed team — but with the addition of some new energy and talents.

"This Council is committed to listening to the people of Cheshire East and seeking to work in partnership — across the political divide -for the benefit of all our customers.

"Under my leadership, the Council will be committed to nurturing strong communities, promoting business growth and job creation, modernising Cheshire East, ensuring value for money for taxpayers, getting things right first time, and developing civic pride and respect for our local environment.

"This Council will work tirelessly and move forward to deliver for the people of Cheshire East — and make Cheshire East the best it can be."

He unveiled his 10-strong Cabinet team, which includes three new members — Cllr Les Gilbert, Cllr Barry Moran and Cllr Peter Raynes.

The Cabinet members are: 

-- Cllr Michael Jones, Council Leader and Chairman of the Cabinet

-- Cllr David Brown, (Deputy Leader) responsibilities for strategic communities

-- Cllr Peter Raynes, responsibilities for finance

-- Cllr Rachel Bailey, responsibilities for communities and regulatory services

-- Cllr Hilda Gaddum, responsibilities for children and family services

-- Cllr Janet Clowes, responsibilities for health and adult social care

-- Cllr Rod Menlove, responsibilities for environment

-- Cllr Jamie Macrae, responsibilities for prosperity and economic regeneration.

-- Cllr Barry Moran, responsibilities for performance;

-- Cllr Les Gilbert, responsibilities for corporate policy.