County supports Gatwick runway

Gatwick Airport
Gatwick Airport

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Cabinet has backed council’s commitment to supporting local businesses by confirming it would welcome a second airport runway, provided it comes with action to limit impact on local residents and would improve county’s infrastructure.

Following Tuesday’s cabinet meeting, Christina Ewbank, from the Alliance of Chambers in East Sussex, said: “The business community of East Sussex is delighted the county council is continuing support for Gatwick Airport. We believe a second runway and the resultant expansion are vital to the economic growth and sustainability of the county for years to come.”

The Airports Commission shortlisted Gatwick’s proposal along with two from Heathrow. County has until February 4 to comment on the proposal for Gatwick. In the summer, the Airports Commission will put its recommendation to the Government, which will make the final decision. The Airports Commission suggests 63,000 jobs could be created by an expansion of the airport. There are around 1,100 East Sussex residents employed directly at Gatwick and this is expected to rise to about 3,400 if a second runway is built. While the authority would welcome the benefits of a second runway, councillors are adamant Gatwick Airport Limited fully fund and deliver promised mitigation and compensation measures such as £46.5m (infrastructure;) £3.75m (2,500 apprenticeships;) £5m (noise insulation scheme;) £45m (council tax initiative) and £10m (road improvements.)