Leader's and Deputy Leader's Announcements
To receive such announcements as may be made by the Leader and Deputy Leader.
The Leader, in summary:
1 wished everybody a Merry Christmas
2 stated that he regretted that the Government still refused to allow remote meetings for Councils and thanked all the Groups for their support to try to get the Government to allow remote meetings and said that he continued to lobby on this issue.
3 reported that the latest Covid-19 infection rate in Cheshire East was 447 per 100,000 and that it had been around this rate for some weeks. Rates in teenagers had been at over 3000 per 100,000 but the infection rate was now spread across the age groups with only the over 70s being under 100.
4 reported that a case of the Omicron variant had been report in Cheshire East and that it was not yet know if this variant was more or less severe but he had seen evidence that it was more infections than the Delta variant. He fully supported the wearing of a face covering in an indoor space to help stop the spread of infection.
5 reported that hospital admissions remained low and encouraged residents to get vaccinated, to get the booster and the flu vaccine as well. In the last week 4 residents in Cheshire East had died within 28 days of a positive test.
6 reported that HM Inspectorate of Probation has rated the Cheshire Youth Justice Services as good overall with outstanding ratings in areas of document and governance and joint working and thanked all who worked in this service.
7 thanked all Council staff for keeping services going during the pandemic.
The Deputy Leader, in summary
1 referred to the A51 carriageway reconstruction project and reported that works would be completed on schedule and the road would re-open on Friday 17 December.
2 reported that work on the Poynton Relief Road was progressing well and had had the opportunity to walk along part of the route. The project remained on target to be finished next Autumn.
3 reported that S106 agreements had been signed on land parcels in north west Crewe to allow the delivery of the scheme known as the North West Crewe Package, which aimed to aim to improve transport links in Crewe and help ease congestion and improve access to Leighton Hospital.
4 welcomed the publication of the Integrated Rail Plan along with the decision to progress with the northern link of HS2 but was disappointed with continued delays to the project.
5 following the focused OFSTED inspection in early November, reported that the Inspectors had identified the quality of the Council social work with vulnerable children and families as improved.
6 reported that the Council’s website had been relaunched making it easier and quicker to access services, with an improved site search facility and improved accessibility standards. The feedback received had been positive and he thanked the Web Team for the work they had done in preparing for the launch of the new site.