As the Conservative Party was edged into third place by the UK Independence Party in last week’s Eastleigh by-election, party members in West Sussex have said this week their reputation here is as strong as the Liberal Democrats’ in Eastleigh.
Leader of West Sussex County Council Louise Goldsmith said: “Eastleigh has a very strong Lib Dem local base which really helped them, although by-elections are well known for residents to express a protest vote.
“As a Conservative-controlled county council we continue to deliver efficient value for money services by working hard to drive out savings, reduce bureaucracy and overall keep a tight control of finances which is why there has been no increase in West Sussex County Council’s council tax for the third year running, keeping residents’ money in their pocket.
“To help the economy we are investing in the infrastructure such as building much needed school classrooms, Shoreham Footbridge to name just a couple of examples.”
“We are investing £8.25 million in ‘operation watershed’ to improve drains, roads and ditch clearance as well, so we are responding to our residents’ needs and supporting our communities.
“It is our record of that we will be discussing on the doorstep.’’
Conservative Arundel and South Downs MP Nick Herbert said: “The Conservative record on West Sussex County Council is a very good one, ensuring that public money is spent wisely, making necessary savings and freezing council tax while delivering efficient services.
“In tough economic times I think local residents will be well aware of this when they come to decide who should be in County Hall and set their council tax bills for another four years.”