Falling unemployment helping to provide opportunity for all

Calderdale Liberal Democrats have welcomed falling unemployment levels across the borough. Latest figures on those claiming Job Seekers Allowance show that there are now more than a thousand less people unemployed in Calderdale than when Labour left office in 2010.

Liberal Democrat parlimentary candidate for Calder Valley: Alisdair Calder McGregor said:

It’s fantastic news that unemployment has fallen across Calderdale, as the vibrant local small business scene here benefits from Liberal Democrat policies for SMEs.”

Our Apprenticeship policy is also helping to get young people into a trade & learning business skills early, enabling them to get on in life on their own hard work.”

Economy & Environment spokesperson Cllr James Baker said:

Liberal Democrats in Government are not only helping to build a stronger economy, but also a fairer recovery. Our tax breaks for people on lower incomes are helping to ensure that everyone is given an opportunity to get on in life.”

As of May 2014 there were 4,613 people claiming JSA which accounts for 3.5% of the working population. This is a fall of over 1,000 from the figure of 5,978 which was 4.6% of the population when Labour left office in 2010.

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Lib Dem proposals win cross-party support at budget meeting

Key Liberal Democrat policies won cross-party support at Calderdale’s budget meeting last night.  Both Conservative and Labour groups accepted a range of our proposals  which were driven by our determination to build both a stronger economy, but also a fairer society in which everyone can get on in life.

Our proposals to build a stronger economy included:

  • Increasing the Council’s Business & Economy Service to provide expert help and advice that will enable local business to increase their exports.
  • Providing each Ward Forum with a sum of £5,000 so that issues of local importance can be addressed.

Our proposals to build a fairer society included:

  • Increasing the size of the Safer, Cleaner, Greener teams, enabling them to place more emphasis on tackling dog fouling.
  • Establishing a fund that local schools can access to tackle issues with their buildings that are too big for their own budgets, but which never make it to the top of the Council’s priority list.

In addition we supported a range of measures to help with the cost of living include a reversal of recent changes in parking charges that have seen residents charged up to 8pm to park in Halifax Town Centre.

Over the past couple of days it became clear there were concerns over proposals to both reduce sick pay, and give staff who take no sick pay and extra day’s holiday. We listened to staff concerns about the proposed reduction in sick pay, and did not support proposals to make this reduction in this years budget. We will be keen now for the Labour administration to demonstrated they can reduce high levels of sick pay on Calderdale Council without having to make these cuts in sick pay.

Further savings were found in a reduction in the Council’s transport budget, reducing the taxpayer subsidy to trade unions and increasing the charges of wheelie bins to reflect their actual cost to replace. We also managed to reverse Labour’s planned half million cut in the communities budget that would have seen a review of community libraries and 15 fte redundancies within the directorate.

Commenting on the proposals Liberal Democrat leader Cllr Janet Battye said ““Our overarching aims have been to make better use of the Council’s resources to support a fairer society and build a stronger economy.”

 

 

Job loss figures are a stark reminder of life outside the EU

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Leaving the European Union could spark the loss of tens of thousands of jobs in Yorkshire & Humber. Analysis of figures from a YouGov poll revealed around 4,641  businesses in the region could face closure if Britain withdrew from the EU.

It could mean job losses of up to 124,000 as companies battle with life outside the world’s biggest single market.

Cllr James Baker said:

“Calderdale as a host of companies for whom membership of the EU is essential for their trade. These companies and the business they generate with Europe create the jobs that help pay the bills and feed people’s families . Put simply: it’s in Europe, in work.”

“UKIP and many Tories who say we should withdraw from the EU. This would be a reckless gamble with our economy, they have some difficult questions to answer about how these businesses who say they would close if we pulled out of the EU would be replaced.”

“As Liberal Democrats we believe in working closely with our neighbors. Cooperation between nations is essential for building a stronger economy and creating more jobs in the region. ”

“That means reforming the EU to make it easier for local businesses to expand their exports, both to Europe and the rest of the world.”

 

UK manufacturing is driving economic recovery

Commenting on figures showing UK manufacturing growth at a two and half year high, Co-Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party Committee on Business, Innovation and

Skills, Gordon Birtwistle said:

“The Liberal Democrats have helped to create more than a million jobs in the private sector – now we want to help create a million more. Manufacturing is absolutely crucial to that and UK manufacturing growth hitting a two and a half year high is fantastic news. “These figures are welcome but there is a long way to go. For years Labour and Conservative governments let British manufacturing ollapse, the Liberal Democrats are determined to rebuild it in order to drive our economic recovery.

“That’s why we are putting billions of pounds into high-tech manufacturing, science and renewable energy. And it’s why we are massively increasing the number of apprenticeships to make sure employers get the skilled workers they need.”

Manufacturing figures fantastic news – Birtwistle

Commenting on figures showing UK manufacturing growth at a two-year high,

Co-Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party Committee on Business, Innovation and Skills, Gordon Birtwistle said:

“The Liberal Democrats have helped to create more than a million jobs in the private sector – now we want to help create a million more. Manufacturing is absolutely crucial to that and UK manufacturing growth hitting a two-year high is fantastic news.

“These figures are welcome but there is a long way to go. For years Labour and Conservative governments let British manufacturing collapse, the Liberal Democrats are determined to rebuild it.

“That’s why we are putting billions of pounds into high-tech manufacturing, science and renewable energy. And it’s why we are massively increasing the number of apprenticeships to make sure employers get the skilled workers they need.”

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Creating jobs here in Calderdale

We are passionate about crating jobs here in Calderdale. When we were running the Council we made certain that it was helping to support and grow businesses through Business Networks, especially for Creative, Manufacturing, Green and Tourism. We worked more closely with Calderdale College and local universities to develop skills and we set up Business breakfasts so that the Council can talk directly to businesses.

In government Liberal Democrats have

 

  • Helped 1.2 million people start an apprenticeship since 2010, including 5,140 in Calderdale.
  • Giving up to 2,930 businesses and charities in Calderdale a £2,000 jobs tax cut. This could be worth up to £10,400,000 in tax cuts and could enable every local business to employ one extra person on a £22,400 salary or four extra people on the minimum wage, without having to pay any extra tax.
  • Secured a £473,000 grant for local business Holts Brothers Ltd, creating 268 jobs across nine sites. The grant will help deliver a £28.5m project to develop the UK supply chain for gearboxes used in the manufacturing of wind turbines.
  •  Given a £175,000 grant to a project to improve local cycling and green travel at Calder Valley Greenway – Colne bridge/Bradley to Brighouse. The project involves constructing Calder Valley Greenway up to district boundary with Calderdale including links on upper quarry road and on to Park Lea, Beadley.
  • Given £4,856,893 to support West Yorkshire Council to create 833 new homes in Calderdale, either new ones or by bringing back empty homes, helping create jobs and giving the local construction industry a much-needed boost.

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A Million Jobs Campaign

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Cllr Janet Battye has welcomed the Liberal Democrat Million Jobs Campaign, which was launched by Liberal Democrat Leader and Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg.

More than one million private sector jobs have been created since the Coalition Government came to power. Liberal Democrats now want to create a million more.

This will build on what Liberal Democrats in the Coalition Government have already achieved. Business Secretary, Vince Cable has overseen a record rise in apprenticeships, including 5,580 apprentices in Calderdale since 2010. To support jobs in manufacturing, £5.5bn extra has been invested into science, high-tech manufacturing and renewable energy and Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander has introduced £2,000 cash back on National Insurance contributions for employers who take on more staff.

Commenting, Cllr Janet Battye said:

“The Liberal Democrats are building a stronger economy in a fairer society, enabling everyone to get on in life.

“Liberal Democrats in the Coalition Government have helped businesses create more than one million private sector jobs, and now we’re working to help them create a million more.

“I look forward to working with local businesses, community groups and schools and colleges to turn this ambition into reality in Calderdale.”