Luton Conservative councillor defects to Liberal Democrats

Jeff Petts was first elected in 2015
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The Conservatives in Luton have suffered a setback with the defection of experienced councillor Jeff Petts to the Liberal Democrats.

Icknield ward councillor Petts joined the main Lib Dem opposition group this week. He was first elected to the local authority in May 2015.

In a statement, the Liberal Democrat opposition group welcomed their latest recruit as former Conservative councillor Petts becomes the 14th member of the party's team on the borough council.

Cllr Petts and the Town HallCllr Petts and the Town Hall
Cllr Petts and the Town Hall

“It’s great to have Jeff on board,” said Liberal Democrat leader and Barnfield councillor David Franks. “We've worked well with him on a number of committees and are sure he'll feel very comfortable as a member of the main opposition team.”

Councillor Petts explained ““Every day I am impressed by the effective way the Liberal Democrat councillors are holding the Labour-run council to account.

"I would like to make my contribution as a part of that team. It’s good putting forward positive and constructive suggestions through the scrutiny process, but sometimes you also need to tell the Labour majority they've got it wrong.".

Councillor Petts currently serves on a number of committees, including the overview and scrutiny board, the scrutiny children's services review group and scrutiny health and social care review group, added the statement.

He said he finds the work interesting and is looking forward to being part of the larger Liberal Democrat team

There are 32 Labour councillors,14 Liberal Democrats and two Conservatives on the council now.