OPPOSITION councillors in Leeds are calling for economic regeneration to be the top priority for the council as the city begins to emerge from lockdown.

Conservative leader Cllr Andrew Carter believes recovery from the pandemic needs to be the main policy focus. He is arguing that all items before the Executive Board should contain a paragraph on how the proposals will benefit jobs, growth and economic regeneration.

He said: “At the beginning of the year no one could have predicted the impact that coronavirus would have on the Leeds economy and on the wider health and well-being of people up and down the country. It is clear that there is now a new reality which will mean that the Council must adapt and prioritise economic regeneration, jobs and growth as its main aim. Of course there is a need to be wary of infection rates and to keep everyone safe but the administration now must be focussed on the Leeds economy and recovery from this terrible pandemic.

“All Executive Board reports currently have a dedicated section on the climate emergency, we think that this should now be expanded to include economic regeneration where every report considered must detail its potential impact on the Leeds economy.”