IF the Tories remain in power, they have promised to tackle the problems on the streets of dog fouling and air pollution and support schools to improve education.

To tackle dog owners who don’t pick up after their pets, council leader Tony Cox says he is taking inspiration from Barking and Dagenham Council by introducing DNA testing.

It would see the creation of a dog DNA database allowing them to be tracked down when their owners fail to pick up their dog’s mess.

When it was introduced in Barking, the council reported a 60 per cent reduction in dog fouling saving the council thousands of pounds in clean-up costs.

Mr Cox has also promised to push for all council vehicles to transition to zero carbon emissions. He said this could be done on a “phased basis” when vehicles need to be replaced but the policy is still under development.

To improve education there are plans to help all of Southend’s schools to be rated “good” or “outstanding” by Ofsted.

Initially the council will assess the impact of a one-off spend of £100,000 to Cecil Jones, Southchurch High School and Chase High School.

If needed the 2019/20 budget will be adjusted to provide further funding.

Mr Cox did not comment on how he would address the issue of academies.