NW Sheffield News asked the Greens, Conservatives, Liberal Democrats and Labour two deceptively simple questions.
Sheffield City Council Leader and Prospective Parliamentary Candidate Paul Scriven answers for the liberal Democrats here …
What do you think are the main policy differences between your party and those of the other candidates?
Well, stating the obvious, I am not for the status quo and the last 65 years of Labservative rule!
Unlike in the other main parties, Vince Cable MP has set out some of the £15bn of savings that need to be made, e.g., such as by scrapping ID cards, no replacing Trident, and through cutting down on the many Government Quangos.
Four areas that really are different in the Liberal Democrats plans are :-
1) Fairer Tax – We would not tax you on the first £10,000 of your income. That would mean an extra £700 back to those on low and middle incomes. Also 3.6 million people would be taken out of paying income tax altogether. We want a fairer tax system and for those who earn more or pollute more to pay their fair share in tax.
2) A fairer start for children – Our number one investment is in education as we believe all young people should get the best start in life. Through our “pupil premium”, Sheffield primary schools would get an extra £30m a year for local schools to decide how to use it – perhaps choosing smaller class sizes or more one to one tuition. We would raise the level of investment for each child who needs extra help to £2,000.
3) Green Jobs Now – We are currently the only party to have a costed plan to electrify the Sheffield to London railway. We also have plans to invest in other plans such as greening homes, hospitals and schools; all fully costed and helping to keep people working.
4) Sack your MP – We are the only party going into this election with root and branch reforms of politics to give power back to people not politicians. This means Proportional Representation so that we get rid of safe “seats for life”. This is really important if your MP is found to have broken the rules as it would be your right to call an election to sack them.
On what policies do you agree with the other parties?
On some areas I am pleased to support a common stance such as on International Development we spend 0.7% of our Income on improving the lives of the poorest in the World.
Whilst we may disagree on details with other parties on some things we take a broad agreement suck as with Labour on keeping spending now on infrastructure to help with the recession. Or with the Conservatives against ID cards.