Election 2012: Dewsbury East candidate statements

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THE following candidates are standing for election in the Dewsbury East ward:

GREG BURROWS

UK Independence Party

I am 52 and a self-employed engineer. I have worked in manufacturing most of my life. I entered politics in 2009 after being involved since 2006 in fighting the smoking ban legislation, after having researched and found this legislation was for social engineering purposes and had no significant health benefits. I am also fighting impending legislation (social engineering) on alcohol and food as these profoundly affect our civil liberties.

I joined UKIP as they are a straight-talking, honest party and we are now becoming a major force in British politics.

I will not promise you anything, as you have heard many promises before. There has been a steady decline in Dewsbury (East). I will do my best to try and reverse this trend and also do my best to find a way of bringing some prosperity and employment back to Dewsbury. I will also do what I can to make sure we get value for money from all our public services and receive a fair share of funding from Kirklees, should I get voted in.

MARK EASTWOOD

Conservative Party

What do you, the people of Dewsbury East, want in (from) a local councillor? To engage, debate and represent the public they serve?

For too long Kirklees has played financial roulette with Dewsbury offering scraps of handouts.

That’s why I ask you to support me and the Conservative proposal to split Kirklees which would see our town governed from Dewsbury, for the people of Dewsbury. This is something many residents want and what I believe can make can make a real difference to the way our town is run and how prosperous it will be in the future.

Local government is about simple progressive policies and I shall be campaigning on the following important issues:

Fight to preserve green belt land in Chidswell for future generations;

Support the hard-working local businesses across Dewsbury by removing car parking charges enabling local businesses to compete;

Invest in the town centre by rejuvenating its appearance with small grants;

Work closely with police to reduce anti-social behaviour.

Fresh enthusiasm, new ideas and a can-do approach is all possible in Dewsbury, but only if, as voters, you are prepared to put party politics aside and vote for change in Dewsbury.

DENNIS HULLOCK

Liberal Democrat

I live in Shaw Cross and am governor at two local schools. I volunteer with a charity that helps young people find homes and jobs. I’ve campaigned tirelessly for local people and many residents are supporting me to be their councillor.

IF ELECTED, TOGETHER WITH THE DEWSBURY LIB DEM, TEAM I WILL:

Protect the green belt in areas under threat like Chidswell;

Campaign for FREE parking in Dewsbury;

Fight to keep services at our local children’s centres;

Fight for a sixth form college for Dewsbury;

Campaign for decisions to be made in Dewsbury for local services such as roads and pavements, street cleaning and lighting, parks, flower beds, libraries and grants to community groups;

Campaign to protect Dewsbury hospital services;

Continue Lib Dems helping low paid by £60 a month when £10,000 starting point for paying income tax achieved;

Continue Lib Dems giving pensioners £9.70 a week since 2010 compared with Labour’s 75p rise;

Continue Lib Dems pupil premium giving extra funds to local schools.

We need an effective councillor with a track record of success in standing up for our area. Someone on the side of and working for local people and fighting for a better deal for Dewsbury.

PAUL KANE (defending)

Labour Party

It gives me the greatest pleasure to seek re-election in Dewsbury East. I prefer to rely on my own track record of achievements rather than attack political opponents.

I have plenty to offer the ward and there is lots of hard work to do. The reduction in the standard of living for most of my community and employment insecurity is causing great concern, especially with the amount of youth unemployment. It is also outrageous that there is such a lack of quality affordable homes for young families to either rent or first-time buy.

As a technical contracts manager working locally, I bring a depth of knowledge and experience from my working life and have 16 years of remedying the issues of constituents and dealing with concerns, both locally and regionally.

My work as chairman of Dewsbury Regeneration Board has seen some improvements and major investments in the town, when the financial situation is not the best. This must continue, and greater powers and service delivery should be returned to the town from Huddersfield.

I do not fear making major decisions that affect people’s lives and do so, in the undertaking of what is best for ALL the community I serve.

TONY KELSALL

Green Party

Tony lives with his wife in Hanging Heaton, Dewsbury, and works as a volunteer for a local charity.

Like other Greens, he supports local government being truly local and would like to see Batley and Dewsbury split from Kirklees Council so that local decisions are made locally. The ruling Huddersfield-centric, Lib-Lab councillors’ attitude to the LDF programme is reflective of this. Green councillors voted against the LDF programme which entails building on green belt land in Chidswell.

The policies introduced by the Liberal-Conservative coalition to reduce the housing benefits received by people living in Dewsbury East are absolutely shocking. 152 households in Dewsbury will be affected by cuts to the Local Housing Allowance, leaving them £80,000 a year worse off in total; 331 tenants in Dewsbury will be affected by changes to under-occupancy rules, which will see their benefits reduced by a total of £211,000. Potential issues resulting from this include increased homelessness, crime, deprivation and evictions coupled with fewer jobs and support services.

However, few (if any) people in Dewsbury East will have benefited from Coalition tax-cuts for the rich.