The Conservatives have launched their election manifesto for the Northamptonshire County Council elections on May 2.
About 50 party members and candidates attended the launch at Franklin’s Gardens in Northampton on Monday morning.
During the launch, the leader of the group, Councillor Jim Harker (Con, Kettering Rural) said he believed that if the Conservatives, who have been in charge of County Hall for the past eight years, won this year’s election, they would control the county for the next decade.
He said: “Our campaign will be based on our record over the last eight years since we inherited the shamble left by Labour.
“I’m confident we can win the election and if we do, I’m sure we’re secure for another 10 years.”
During his speech, he admitted the first four years of his time in charge of the council had been a ‘baptism of fire’ as they included High Court hearings about controversial council cuts.
He also said some ‘courageous’ decisions had been made in the past four years, including decisions to switch off some of the county’s street lights and fund an office in Europe.
He said: “The courageous decision to set up the Brussels office has really paid off. It costs £140,000 to run but has brought in £2 million of European funding and there’s more in the pipeline, so that’s been a real success.”
On street lights, he added: “The decision to switch off some street lights has been controversial but it’s more than compensated by the multi-million-pound renewal of street lights we’re carrying out in the county, which is already happening.”
The party’s manifesto also includes pledges to ‘keep council tax low’, keep all libraries open, deliver better healthcare services and improve adoption services in the county.
The Liberal Democrats launched their election campaign last week. Labour have not yet launched theirs.
The UK Independence Party has said it aims to put forward candidates for all the council’s seats.