Alliance Councillor Alan McDowell has said he is focused on driving great economic growth for Ards and North Down, as he was appointed Chair of the Regeneration and Development Committee.
Selected by his Alliance colleagues to take on the role, Alderman McDowell said he was looking forward working to secure job opportunities for the area, having previously proposed the setting up of an Economic Development Forum for the area.
He added: “I am honoured and grateful that my Alliance Council Colleagues have selected me to be the next Chair the Regeneration and Development Committee for 2018/2019. With the Council now having more powers and responsibility for Economic Development, the Council can be the driver to create more jobs and growth for our Borough”.
“Recently, I proposed the setting up of an Economic Development Forum for the Borough. It is now a main part of the Councils Economic Development Strategy. Its aim is to work more closely with businesses in the area, to find out the key issues affecting them, and to work with them to create more jobs and growth. The first meeting will take part in the next couple of weeks.
“More jobs and economic growth for the Ards and North Down area can help slow the brain drain that is robbing us of our brightest young people who emigrate.
“I will also be campaigning for New Employment Lands for Newtownards, Bangor, Holywood, Comber and other small towns, where previous industrial land has now been used for housing. People should have the opportunity to work closer to home, not stuck in traffic having to commute to Belfast or further afield.
“This is an exciting time for Economic Development in Ards and North Down and as Chair of this important committee, I will work hard to make sure that we maximise the opportunities to create more jobs and growth for the area”