Ripley & Heanor News Column

As published in The Ripley & Heanor News, 24th July 2014

We’ve had more good news on the economy over the past few weeks, with the announcement last week that unemployment here in Amber Valley has fallen to 2.5%, meaning it’s nearly halved from its peak of 4.9% at the time I was elected. This is a great achievement, particularly considering that it was one of my election pledges back in 2010.

It’s great news that more of my constituents now have the security of a monthly pay-packet, and it’s further evidence that our plan is working.

The number of jobs created in the private sector under this Government has reached 2 million – something that the Labour Party said was impossible.

The job is not yet done – I will continue to work with local businesses to do whatever I can to help them take on more employees, and I will of course hold another jobs fair.

Over 3,000 of my constituents signed my petition to reopen the Heanor Memorial Hospital and enhance, not diminish, health services in the town, which I submitted to Parliament in March.

I’m pleased to say that the CCG is now undergoing a public consultation period, which will end on Friday 8th October. You can visit my web site at www.nigelmillsmp.com/heanorhospital to find out more about how you can engage in the consultation.

Earlier this month, the Government allocated £12.5m to Derbyshire County Council to fill 46,000 potholes in the county. I know from speaking with many of my constituents on the doorstep that this is an issue people feel strongly about – potholes are simply a nuisance to drivers.

I’m keen to ensure that Derbyshire County Council gives its fair share of the money to fixing potholes in Amber Valley, so if there are specific potholes that affect you, please email me on nigel@nigelmillsmp.com or call my office on 01773 744 341 and I’ll pressure the Council to get them sorted.

Finally, last week the Department for Education announced that schools in Derbyshire will receive a £16.3m – equating to 4%, or £171 per pupil – rise in their budgets due to the Conservative policy of ensuring increasing funding for those counties that need the additional money.

Labour failed to address this funding problem for schools while in Government, so I’m pleased that this new money has been allocated to Derbyshire schools – it will ensure that children are properly prepared for their future.