The Chairman of North Yorkshire County Council, David Jeffels, has released a New Year message.
Cllr David Jeffels, Chairman, NYCC:
While the County Council, like all other authorities, faces another difficult year financially, it remains determined to continue to provide the best possible service to our 700,000 residents.
Through its Stronger Communities programme, councillors and officers have worked hard to ensure that our older residents as well as those in the community of all ages who are vulnerable are well supported.
Our highways are, in the main, much improved after an additional multi-million pound investment and concerted efforts by the council and its contractors to repair the extensive damage caused by severe weather over recent winters.
By working with our population, the town and parish councils, North Yorkshire is in many fields proving to be an exemplar authority nationally, showing what can be achieved in the face of financial adversity. We have an education service of which we can be truly proud and our children and young people’s service and social work practice has been applauded by Government.
The response from our residents who have volunteered to help the council deliver such services as libraries and youth clubs, and who give tremendous support to vulnerable neighbours, shows what a caring community we live in.
At the start of my term of office last May, I launched a new award scheme to celebrate the work, very often unrecognised, which goes on in our communities – people who give many hours of their time to run projects, voluntary organisations, and initiatives all aimed at improving the quality of life for our residents. Their dedication has in so many cases, matched that of the county council’s own staff who have been able to offer their skills and expertise to the volunteers.
The award scheme attracted nearly 120 applications and the judging teams spent many hours, initially to draw up short lists, and then to visit the finalists and decide the winners. It proved, if proof was needed, what a caring community we have. It was humbling to hear of the many activities which are carried out by people who are using a great wealth of skills and expertise to help the council ensure our residents are supported and cared for and can enjoy this wonderful county in which we are all privileged to live and work in.
One behalf of the County Council, I sincerely thank all our staff and our many hundreds of volunteer helpers, for their wonderful work and wish everyone a happy, peaceful and healthy 2016.