Harpenden councillors appointed to lead Herts County Council

David Williams, the new leader of Hertfordshire County Council. Photo: Pete Stevens.

David Williams, the new leader of Hertfordshire County Council. Photo: Pete Stevens. - Credit: Photo: Pete Stevens - CreativeEmpathy.com

Harpenden councillor David Williams has been appointed to lead Herts County Council.

Mr Williams was elected leader following the death of Robert Gordon.

Addressing a full council meeting, the Harpenden North East councillor said: “I will work hard to match the passion and dedication Robert Gordon exemplified during his 10 years as leader.

“A key priority is the need to deliver infrastructure to support the growth that’s planned for the county. In particular those areas where we have direct responsibility, such as schools and roads.

“We need to plan for some 100,000 new homes and 100,000 new jobs over the next 15 years.

“We also need to take a positive approach to the delivery of housing that addresses local need and helping to secure and deliver supporting infrastructure.

“None of this can be achieved alone and we need to work even more closely with our local and national partners to advocate on behalf of those who live and work in Hertfordshire.

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“We must ensure growth works for everyone and any new development is co-ordinated and properly thought through.

“I intend to work with colleagues from across the political spectrum to take forward a partnership approach with councils, developers, and the NHS, fire and police.

“This is not a fresh start and I am immensely grateful for my predecessor as well as my existing cabinet colleagues and senior officers who show their expert calibre on a daily basis.”

Mr Williams said fellow Harpenden councillor Teresa Heritage will stay on as deputy leader.

He will keep the resources, property, and economy portfolio on the Cabinet, giving him responsibility for economic development and council land.

St Albans council’s leader Alec Campbell said: “I have found David understands the challenges and opportunities facing Hertfordshire and the opportunities for growth, quality houses with supporting schools and transport infrastructure.

“He and I has been proactively seeking to address how we can better work together to deliver for our residents and businesses.

“I know he will stand up for Hertfordshire within the region and nationally, and I am confident he will do this effectively.”