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Labour puts Cambridge city and county councillors up for mayoral bid


By Ben Comber


Cllr Kevin Price
Cllr Kevin Price

King's Hedges councillors Kevin Price and Fiona Onasanya go head to head on the ballot.

They are the only two on the ballot to choose the Labour candidate who will run for the new Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Mayor in May 2017.

Six candidates put their names forward across the region and the party whittled the list down to two names following panel interviews last week.

Although Cllr Onasanya is a King's Hedges representative on the County Council she is a Peterborough resident.

Ballots go out to Labour Party members across the Devolution Deal area on 9 January 2017 and the result will be announced on 3 February.

Councillor Kevin Price, Cambridge City Council's Deputy Leader, has already laid out his top priorities for the mayoral role.

He said:"Decisions taken in Westminster have failed Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. We have a housing crisis, a poor transport system, an economy where too many are on low wages and a pressing need to boost skills for our young people. This area sends billions every year to the Treasury in personal and corporate taxation, and gets back only a faction of the wealth it generates for the UK economy. The Devolution Deal is our chance to transfer real powers from Whitehall to local communities and re-balance not just our politics but also our economy away from London. I am standing to be Labour's candidate for the Mayoral role because I believe that a Labour Mayor will be best placed to negotiate with government and change the things that hold our area back."

Councillor Price added:"Cambridgeshire and Peterborough need a strong voice to stand up for our area in Westminster just as Cambridge City Council stood up against the first damaging proposals for a huge three county Eastern Devolution plan. I want to share Cambridge's growth across the county, tackle inequality by investing infrastructure funding in disadvantaged communities and delivering better rail and bus services including to isolated rural communities. Through this first Deal we can build at least 2500 affordable homes, mainly for rent, for people who badly need them but we also need to look ahead to further devolution deals which should focus on deprived communities whether they are in Fenland, Peterborough or in Cambridge."

Councillor Price's four priorities for the Mayor's role are:

Sharing growth across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough and easing growth pressures on Cambridge by strategic planning across the whole Deal footprint, and tackling inequality by investing £600m to transform disadvantaged communities.

Building affordable housing for those in need. At least 2500 homes, mainly for rent, can be delivered through the £100m for housing associations and £70m for new council homes in Cambridge won for a landmark housing grant Devolution Deal through the Labour led City Council's determination to secure the best funding deal.

Delivering better rail and bus services by tackling inadequate and expensive bus services including to often isolated rural communities and investing with Network Rail in major improvements to rail links and stations.

Working with local communities to keep decisions as local as possible and provide a visible strong local leadership and partnership approach across the county and at Westminster.



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