Waveney leader stands down ahead of council’s new era
- Credit: Nick Butcher
The leader of Waveney District Council has announced he will be standing down from the role to allow someone new to take the helm ahead of the creation of a new East Suffolk Council.
Colin Law has been leader of the Lowestoft-based council since 2011, and is stepping down in the run-up to the merger with Suffolk Coastal Council - creating a new council stretching from Felixstowe to Lowestoft in two years' time.
Mr Law said: 'I took the decision some while ago that I would not be standing for re-election as a district councillor for Oulton Broad at the next elections in 2019 and, as we approach the most momentous period in the history of this council, I think it is only logical and fair that a new leader is in place to steer us towards full merger with Suffolk Coastal.
'There is a huge amount of work to do and it is a very exciting time, but with my own retirement pending, I will be very happy to hand over the reins to someone who will take this district forward in to a new era.'
Speaking of his time as leader, Mr Law said: 'I knew that my role would be to take Waveney forward and deliver key outcomes for the people and communities of the district. With this in mind, I can genuinely look back with satisfaction.
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'In recent times, we have received long awaited funding for a new third crossing in Lowestoft as well as the money we need to build a permanent flood protection scheme in the town. We have seen huge strides in the renewable energy sector with investment by Scottish Power of £25m to create a base which will bring employment for decades to come and we are continuing to build new homes all the time to meet the housing need in the district.'
This May will also see the creation of new councils for Lowestoft and Oulton Broad.
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Former county council leader Mark Bee, who chairs the Conservative councillor group at Waveney, is expected to put his name forward to lead the Conservatives at Waveney again. He was leader of the district between 2004 and 2011 before taking over as leader of the county council for four years.
Mr Law said: 'I would like to wish my successor, whoever that may be, the very best of luck and I now look forward to serving the people of Oulton as a ward councillor until 2019, before my full retirement and an opportunity to spend more time with the people closest to me.'