Published: 11:04, 06 October 2009
| Updated: 11:06, 06 October 2009
Councillor Nick Williams has left the Sittingbourne and Sheppey Liberal Democrats party to join Labour.
Cllr Williams who represents the St Michael’s ward in Sittingbourne joined the group on Monday night after meeting Cllr Angela Harrison, the leader of the Labour Group on Swale Council, and Roger Truelove, party spokesman and Chalkwell ward councillor.
The move means the Labour Group now has 11 members on the council and the Lib Dems will be reduced to four.
Swale Council is also made up of 28 Conservative councillors and four Independent members.
Cllr Williams said: “I have thought about this for some time.
"My mind has finally been made up during the Liberal Democrat and Labour Party Conferences over the last two weeks.
"I no longer feel comfortable in a party whose Leader wants to introduce 'savage cuts' into public spending and a freeze on public sector pay.
"We all know that the recession and the public sector debt present big problems.
"I feel sure now that Labour are best equipped to face those problems without dragging the country into depression and without destroying our public services.
“I look forward to working in the Labour Group. They take the role of opposition seriously.
"They alone seem ready to expose the many failings of the Tory majority on Swale Council.”
Cllr Harrison said: “This is a very welcome surprise. We have recognised for a long time that Nick Williams was not at ease in the Liberal Democrat Party but no one in our team has ever tried to press him to change sides.
"His instincts are Labour ones; he is a hard working councillor and a good campaigner.
"Many people recognise that the Lib Dems are moving to the right and there will be others who may feel more at ease with Labour.”