As part of our coverage of 2014 local elections, we have invited each candidate from Kings Norton, Longbridge, Northfield and Weoley wards to send in 500 Words describing themselves and their campaign.
Steven Brookes is the candidate for the UK Independence Party (UKIP) in Longbridge and has sent in the following:
UKIP will focus Council spending on the provision of local services to local people, rather than waste taxpayers’ money on fat-cat management salaries, vanity projects, and political correctness. Under the Lib/Lab/Con, Council debt has rocketed into the billions, and instead of your Council Tax being spent on services that benefit you, it is being wasted on servicing massive debt, and on funding profits for the Lib/Lab/Con’s Big Business private sector outsourcing chums, who provide many Council services.
Under Labour, your Council Tax is increasing, while services are being slashed. Council Tax is rising by 1.99% this year, the maximum allowed without Labour having to call a local referendum. Labour does not want you to have your say.
UKIP will guarantee you local referenda on big local issues that affect your neighbourhood, such as major residential and retail developments, and Council Tax increases. You live in Longbridge, so who better than you to decide what happens in Longbridge?
UKIP will restore effective waste collection services to Birmingham. Residents have sent Labour a clear message by overwhelmingly refusing to pay Labour’s unjustifiable green waste tax. But Labour won’t listen, and you have to pay the price for their misguided policy, with rubbish piling up on your streets.
UKIP will take immediate action to fix our badly maintained roads, and improve local transport. Instead Labour is spending millions imposing 20 mph speed limits across the city, in spite of its own public consultation (costing over £10,000 of your money) clearly finding that the majority of Birmingham residents do not want the scheme. Again, Labour is not interested in listening to you.
UKIP believes that we must stop open door immigration, a policy which was pursued enthusiastically by Labour, and which the Tories and Lib Dems have failed to halt. Much of our projected population increase is being driven by immigration, fuelling the “need” for more housing developments, and placing unnecessary pressures on local services and the environment.
UKIP will scrap the unfair Tory/LibDem bedroom tax.
I am Birmingham born and bred, as were my parents before me. I have lived here for most of my life, and work as a solicitor in Birmingham city centre. I went to a local Grammar School, and was the first person in my family to attend University. I have law and business degrees from the Universities of London, Wolverhampton, and Birmingham City University. I am proud that UKIP believes in the expansion of the Grammar School system to benefit the children of ordinary working people.
UKIP’s Councillors will be free to act locally in your interests, not in the interests of central party hierarchy or a remote political elite. On 22nd May, I would urge you to vote for change, vote for democracy, and send a clear message to Birmingham’s failed political class. Vote UKIP.