Election 2015: Party statements for Worthing local elections

Election 2015 ballot box
Election 2015 ballot box
17
Have your say

THE FIVE parties contesting elections in 11 Worthing Borough Council seats have had their say on why voters should choose them.

The parties were invited to provide 200 words in an attempt to win the electorate over. Their thoughts are below.

What are the issues that really matter to voters? Find out at What Matters To Me. Upload your own views.

Conservative

Over the past five years, Worthing Conservatives can be proud of the achievements they have made for our town.

Worthing is a vibrant and thriving community. Worthing is doing well. Just walk around and see; from the exciting new east beach scene to the popular children’s play park in the west – wonderful things are happening in our town.

Worthing is popular with businesses, has fewer empty shops and lower unemployment than the national average.

Worthing Conservatives have won significant investment for our town centre and will continue to drive forward key improvements whilst protecting important green field land from development. £30million extra funding has been brought in by Worthing Conservatives to improve Worthing schools and Worthing children are getting a brand new secondary school giving parents choice over their child’s education.

Worthing’s night life is enjoying a revival with new and exciting restaurants and bars opening and our sports and leisure facilities, including a free outdoor gym, have never been more popular.

Parking is now cheaper than ever and everyone is now contributing to our community through inclusive changes to council tax. A vote for a Conservative candidate is a vote for Worthing and a successful local economy.

Green

Worthing Green Party candidates want to see Worthing’s public services safeguarded and improved, our economy promoted and expanded, and our council leading the way on social justice and environmental protection.

We will strive to ensure the NHS remains a public sector service, and to protect it from the cuts and privatisation imposed by the current government.

We will lobby for better subsidies for Worthing buses, to provide more services, and services into the evening so people can access town centre leisure opportunities.

We will actively pursue the redevelopment of Teville Gate, Union Place and the Guildbourne Centre and keep residents constantly informed of the current status of all projects.

We will promote Worthing as a leisure destination and a hub for creative and green industries and bring Park and Ride facilities to Worthing.

We will fight for residents against inappropriate development encouraged by Tory changes to planning law, increase affordable housing requirements from developers and ensure new housing is built to higher environmental and energy-saving standards.

We will access the millions made available to councils to develop housing, the economy, and transport, which the current council has neglected and ignored.

Labour

It’s time to put working people first in Worthing and get some common sense into the way our town is run.

We don’t want a repeat of the NCP pay-off fiasco and we don’t believe a council should be run by a small clique behind closed doors.

The Tories have had it their own way for too long and the Lib-Dems can’t offer any real opposition.

Lack of affordable housing is reaching crisis levels in Worthing.

The council still seems to favour prestige developments, attracting out-of-town buyers.

Labour believes that 40 per cent of new developments should be affordable homes for local people.

Labour will press for more bus services to help people working unsocial hours and boost the town’s economy.

And we believe Worthing should lead the way in becoming a living wage town with a new minimum of £7.85 an hour for all workers delivering public services. 

Worthing needs to attract more visitors and business to the town.

But the council decided to close the well-used tourist information office.

How short-sighted can they get!

Labour councillors will take on the tired old Tories and make the council work for ordinary people in Worthing.

It’s about time.

Liberal Democrat

The Liberal Democrats want to put Worthing first and will support any measure that they consider will benefit the town, regardless of who suggests the idea.

Party political game playing hampers this, but we will ask the ‘awkward’ questions, especially when we see potential waste or bad decisions.

An example of this has been the decision to freeze Council Tax for all but the most vulnerable which has been opposed vigorously.

Firstly, because of the hurt and upset that it has caused both residents and officers, but also because it is going to raise so little.

It seems like an attack on the people who are most likely not to vote.

As we are saying nationally: ‘We will try and be the heart in a Conservative administration’.

We will be especially supportive of any measures that give real power and influence to local communities over the things that matter to them. An example of this has been the championing by Hazel Thorpe of the Vine public house as a community asset.

We will not promise to deliver on schemes like roads and the NHS as these are mainly not within the borough councillors’ powers. Liberal Democrats have always been very active in their wards looking after the interests of residents and will continue to do so.

UKIP

For UKIP this election is about forming an effective opposition, to hold the ruling Conservative group to account for their decisions.

Decisions such as the car parking debacle costing £800,000 and rising and the unfair sacking of a member of staff.

None of the ruling Conservative group took any responsibility.

The closing of the Tourist Information Centre, based on inaccurate figures and with no public consultation.

The roll back on maintenance on our parks and gardens, and the proposed sale of the beach huts.

All of these could effect our tourist industry.

The neglect in maintaining the council’s properties with the outstanding bill at over £5million and increasing.

The continued funding of West Sussex County Council’s travellers camp – £46,000 this year – at Chichester in the hope that travellers will go there instead of Worthing.

It could be an expensive error. Expenditure of council taxpayers’ money should be transparent and accountable.

It should never be subject to legal agreements, preventing disclosure to the public, which has happened in the past. The electorate of Worthing deserve to have an effective opposition to ask these questions.

That is what UKIP aims to be.