Absentee Labour councillor steps down

PAUL Schroder, one of our three Labour Councillors in the Mark Hall Ward, has resigned as a Local Councillor due to work commitments. Paul Schroder has represented Mark Hall for three years, has taken on a new job as a full time official for the maritime trade union Nautilus. His duties cover the whole of the UK and beyond, and as such he has found it difficult to devote the necessary time to his local councillor role. As a consequence, he has decided to stand down from Harlow Council with immediate effect.

Billion pound investment could pay dividends for Harlow

THE South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SE LEP) has today called on HM Government to make a £1.2 billion investment in growth across the South East. With support from Ministers and Whitehall, local partners’ plans will unlock a total investment package of £10 billion to accelerate growth, jobs and house building until 2021.

A year of fast paced challenges for West Essex Clinical Commissioning Group

NHS WEST Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (WECCG) has reached its first birthday and is reflecting on its achievements which have surpassed expectations in a challenging climate. Successes over the past year include more collaborative working between statutory organisations and service providers and more integration between services – meaning local people are already benefitting from improvements in their care.

Partnership brings jobs to Poundland

HARLOW Council is leading a successful partnership including Jobcentre Plus and Harlow College to work with local developers to ensure that where jobs are created that local people are able to access them. The Council says it is essential that local people benefit from the growth of the Town and that it actively encourages all developers to engage with the partnership and assist it in promoting employment and job opportunities where possible.

Roads Minister called to improve Essex highways

ESSEX County Council Highways and Transportation Cabinet Member Councillor Rodney L Bass and Witham MP Priti Patel met Roads Minister Robert Goodwin yesterday to discuss the need for investment in the county’s major road network. They stressed the importance to the economic growth of Essex of major improvements to the A12, A120 and A127 roads.

MEP calls on energy companies to take action on energy savings

THE national investigation into how big energy companies are behaving needs to look deeper than energy prices. It should also review what companies are doing to help householders save energy. This was one of the main conclusions from a round table on rural energy issues hosted by East Anglian MEP Vicky Ford at the Cambridge […]

Social workers who cannot communicate in English could be struck off

SOCIAL workers who cannot communicate clearly in English could be banned from practice if the government accepts a series of reforms proposed by the three UK Law Commissions today. Ministers would also have the power to introduce a licence to practise and system of revalidation for social workers in England, if the draft bill is approved; an approach the chief social worker for children and families, Isabelle Trowler, is currently exploring reports CommunityCare Daily.

UKIP make an impression with their Day of Action in Harlow

FROM Katherines to Old Harlow; from Rams Gorse to Potter Street, members of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) were all over Harlow on Saturday as part of their Harlow Day of Action. The day was motivated after comments by the Harlow MP, Robert Halfon. The day was dominated by members of the party on the doorsteps of Harlow residents, listening to their concerns.

It is 365 and 24/7 for Labour

THE message from Harlow Labour at the weekend was that they are out campaigning in Harlow 365 days a year and not just for a sunny Saturday in March. The message broadcast across social media may well have been directed at UKIP who were having a “Day of Action” in Harlow.

Harlow teaching union delighted with strike action

THE HARLOW and Epping representative from the National Union of Teachers has expressed his delight at the response following a day of industrial action on Wednesday. NUT rep, Murray Sackwild said: “We are delighted with the response to today’s NUT call to strike. The majority of our 1000 teachers in the Harlow+Epping Forest Association took action.

UKIP are coming, UKIP are coming!

AN attack by Harlow MP, Robert Halfon on the UK Independence Party (UKIP), in which he likened the Party’s members to Nazis has backfired on him says the party. The anti-EU Party has organised a major day of action in Harlow on Saturday 29th March. UKIP members from all over the East of England will converge on Harlow for a mass leaflet distribution, starting at 10.30am, from the Latton Bush Centre in Southern Way.

Harlow’s children’s services rated Good by Ofsted

ESSEX County Councillor Dick Madden, Cabinet Member for children’s services, said: “I am absolutely delighted with the ‘good’ rating that Essex has received. This is incredibly high praise for all those social workers and employees that have worked tirelessly to improve services for Essex children and I would like to thank them for their commitment and professionalism. Over the past three years we have been on a continuous improvement journey to ensure children in Essex are safe, supported and protected and today’s rating shows we are on the right path to ensuring our services are ultimately outstanding.”

Harlow Enterprise Zone take can-do message to Cannes

HARLOW Enterprise Zone exhibited at MIPIM as part of the London Stansted Cambridge Consortium (see www.lscc.co), promoting the growth opportunities within this corridor. Specifically, they were seeking to promote the London Road North site to potential development partners and to raise the profile of the Harlow Enterprise Zone.

“Vulnerable” Sheering Primary re-visited by Ofsted

YOUR action plan sets out clearly how you aim to tackle the weaknesses identified in the previous inspection. However, while it is clear how leaders and governors will monitor the effectiveness of your planned actions, it is not clear how often you will check on the progress being made towards achieving your targets. It is also important to record the impact of your actions on an on-going basis. You have received conflicting guidance on how to complete your action plan from different parties, which has not been entirely helpful.

Halfon has urgent meeting with Greater Anglia

FINALLY, I spoke to Greater Anglia about pricing, an issue which is extremely important for Harlow commuters. This is not a new issue – The previous Labour Government relaxed rules on rail fares allowing rail companies to dramatically increase fares on popular routes, for example, on some routes in 2009 rail fares went up by 11.5% in just one year, and in Harlow, fares rose by around 40% over 13 years.

Millions given for pothole repairs

ESSEX County Councillor Rodney L Bass, Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation, said: “We welcome the £2.7m that the DfT will be giving us in additional funding to fix potholes on Essex’s roads, having made a great effort as a council to finance road repairs. This money is further to the additional revenue of £4.8m that Essex has already pledged for highways repairs next year.”