Council plan promises improved services and efficiency savings

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Antrim and Newtownabbey Council has set out its strategic vision for the development of the borough over the next 15 years.

The new local authority incorporating the old Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Councils has published its Corporate Plan for 2015 - 2030.

The document, approved by councillors at their monthly meeting on Thursday, March 26, outlines how the new council plans to “meet and exceed the needs and aspirations of our people and be recognised for leadership and excellence both locally and beyond.”

The plan details the council’s main aims in terms of protecting and enhancing the local environment, improving services and the quality of life of local residents, supporting economic growth and maximising tourism opportunities.

In reference to the local authority’s new planning and community planning responsibilities, the document states: “We will ensure that lands are appropriately zoned and that our infrastructure is enhanced to develop the borough for future generations.

“We will support sustainable communities by empowering residents to take responsibility for their environment.”

It adds: “Through the community planning process, we will encourage and support economic growth in our borough to create a vibrant and prosperous economy which is attractive to new and existing businesses.

“We will support the physical regeneration of our borough and make it attractive for residents, investors and visitors.”

The Corporate Plan also focuses on the council’s targets in terms of improving service delivery, being at the forefront of good governance and making savings through the best use of available resources.

“We will be recognised for excellence in governance and our commitment to using a best practice approach to accountable decision making,” the document states.

Commenting on the 15-year plan, council chief executive Jacqui Dixon said: “The Corporate Plan runs to 2030 because we wanted to take quite a long term vision and it is something that we will keep under review and bring back to members on an annual basis. We also plan to produce an annual report for the public in terms of how we’re performing against the Corporate Plan.

“For the first time we also have performance indicators that are laid down in statute by the department that we have to deliver as well, so we are very focussed on performance.”

Copies of the corporate plan will be available from council offices and on the new website - www.antrimandnewtownabbey.gov.uk