New Council administration approved
At the Annual Full Council meeting this week (Wednesday 25 May), Hastings Borough councillors voted in the new Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Leader and Cabinet members.
Cllr Paul Barnett (Lab) was elected Leader of the Council, with Cllr Maya Evans (Lab) named Deputy and Portfolio Holder for Housing and Community Development.
Cllr James Bacon was re-elected as Mayor of Hastings for the 2022-23 municipal year and Cllr Margi O'Callaghan was elected as Deputy Mayor.
The Cabinet will be made up of eight councillors - six Labour and two Green.
Cllr Andy Batsford (Lab) - health and culture; Cllr Glenn Haffenden (Green) - urban environment; Cllr Julia Hilton (Green) - climate change and natural environment; Cllr Ali Roark (Lab) - Chair of the Charity committee; Cllr Judy Rogers (Lab) - planning, governance, community safety; Cllr Simon Willis (Lab) - finance and equalities
Cllr Paul Barnett, Leader of the Council, said: "Being elected as Leader of the Council is a great responsibility. Looking after this wonderful town is the most important aspect of this job, and working together with colleagues in the Green party, and with everyone across our town is going to be vital. There are tough decisions to be made so that we can live within our budget, which is one of the top priorities for this new Labour and Green agreement.
"We must prioritise those most in need in our town, and build new partnerships with our residents, voluntary sector and businesses. We have agreed seven priorities which will form our work plan for the coming year, these will include tackling the housing crisis, balancing the budget and improving outcomes for the most vulnerable in our town."
Cllr Julia Hilton, Leader of the Green group, said: "Everyone has expressed a wish for more collaborative working, this agreement is intended to open up the council to more scrutiny and debate. This will be a cooperative alliance; we will be working together in the best interests of the town and its people.
"We will ensure that all decisions made by the council will be seen through a climate change lens, alongside working to tackle the cost of living crisis. We will also continue to campaign for cleaner water, working with local groups such as Clean Water Action, to hold Southern Water to account and improve the water quality on our beaches for all those who live and visit our town."