On 22 January 2009, the St Albans City and District Council, Harpenden Town Council, Oaklands College, Job Centre Plus, Credit Union and other representatives held a roundtable summit on the local economy. They discussed measures which would make the district less vulnerable in the recession.
The short term measures include;
An Executive job forum (to launch in February 09), in which local unemployed professionals can get advice and support in job search activities.
Information and support – Local agencies (e.g. St Albans Enterprise Agency) will give advice to small businesses. CAB will advise on debts. Local ‘value for money’ services, such as leisure centres, will be promoted by the Council.
Council Tax – The council has pledged to keep council tax at or below inflation.
Economic sustainability – With the aim to reduce St Albans CO2 emissions, economic sustainability will inform the council’s corporate priorities and service delivery for 2009-12.
The medium term measures include;
Promoting local trade and hold on to wealth generated within the community.
The long term measures include;
City Vision Project – The council will develop ways to encourage economic independence in order to reduce dependence from the City of London and the financial sector.
Councillor Melvyn Teare expressed confidence that St Albans would weather out this (economic) storm.