Liberal Democrat, Labour, and Independent Groups on Cambridgeshire County Council have hammered out an agreement for a Joint Administration to run the Council.
Cambridgeshire bucked the national trend in last week’s local elections, with the Tories losing control of the county council after the Lib Dems won seven previously Conservative divisions.
The Liberal Democrat candidate to be Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Aidan Van de Weyer, has launched his election manifesto for the 2021 Mayoral Combined Authority election.
Cllr Dr Aidan Van de Weyer said,
“I am offering the people of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough the opportunity to have a Mayor who works for all residents, after four disastrous years under the current Mayor James Palmer.
The Cambridgeshire Liberal Democrats have launched their manifesto for the May 2021 county council elections. With the Conservatives only needing to be defeated in four seats to lose control of the council, this manifesto looks set to determine the future of the county.
Cllr Lucy Nethsingha, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group and candidate in Newnham, said,
“The Liberal Democrats have a vision for a Cambridgeshire that puts a green recovery at the centre of our plans for the next four years.
“The pandemic has changed life for everyone over the past year. Its impact has not been equal across society, and we need to ensure that as Covid recedes, the recovery doesn’t mean simply returning things to how they were.
A bit of an update on Highways maintenance and repairs, and how to report problems, and find out what is going on.
I'm very critical of many aspects of the County Council Highways department, and I hope when my party takes control of the Council (fingers crossed!) we'll be able to make a number of changes that will improve the service for residents. That said, reporting a fault does work most of the time.
A number of faults were reported with potholes on Milton Road over the last few months (happens every year after freezing as this is a busy road) and they were grouped together by the officers and an order made to repair them under standard Highways contract.
Aidan Van de Weyer, Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, said,
“The creation of a new railway line from Oxford to Cambridge is very welcome. It has the potential to be a new green strategic route that improves links with other parts of the country and helps change the focus of the railway network away from London. In conjunction with the new Cambridge South station, it will allow the sustainable expansion of the Cambridge Biomedical Campus.
At the meeting of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority Board held on 24 March 2021, Lib Dem Aidan Van de Weyer obtained further details of the state of Mayor James Palmer’s plans for Cambridgeshire Autonomous Metro. The next stage of the business case process will take at least a year, with further stages to be undertaken after that.
The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, Aidan Van de Weyer, has condemned the Conservatives in the area for failing to publicly support the electrification of East West Rail.
Aidan Van de Weyer, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has pledged his unconditional support for the interim recommendations of the Combined Authority's Independent Commission on Climate, and has urged the other mayoral candidates to do the same.
“Baroness Brown’s report makes clear the gravity of the crisis that we are facing. Tackling climate change needs rapid action across a wide range of areas. The consequences of further delay in implementing a rapid plan will be catastrophic.
“The Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, with the largest electoral mandate in this area, must show leadership on climate change and wholeheartedly support these ambitious aims.
“Every decision and every policy that the Combined Authority makes should show how it maximises its contribution to reducing carbon emissions and protects residents from the damaging impacts of climate change. The current mayor seems to think that relying on the staid formulas provided by central government is enough - it just isn’t.
“The report recommends prioritising sustainable travel over road schemes when considering new investments. The mayor has shown over the last four years that he is most interested in building new roads regardless of the environmental consequences. This has to change.
“The commission has put a particular focus on emissions from the peatlands of the Fens. Through a ‘whole farm’ approach, we can achieve both emissions reduction and biodiversity enhancement in the Fens. But this requires us to be working closely with farmers so that we can continue to produce food for the nation.
“I fear that Mayor James Palmer just does not grasp the urgency of the situation. He is stalling when it is time for action. Adding caveats to the recommendations will send all the wrong signals to those who also need to up their game. He is once again showing that he fails when it really matters.
“Of course, the mayor can’t single-handedly do all these things. But that is one of the main problems with tackling climate change: everyone has to be striving for the same goals for us to succeed.
“What is needed from the mayor and other politicians is clear leadership on this issue. We must raise expectations about what we can do, but also what others can do. And then everyone must be held to account for how well they are meeting the milestones.
“If elected on May 6, I will immediately adopt these recommendations in full, without caveats or quibbles, and get on with implementing them.”
Aidan Van de Weyer says Mayor Palmer is a "national embarrassment" after he loses £45 million of funding for affordable housing in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.