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  • Article: Apr 15, 2014

    Press Release

    31st March 2014

    The Totnes and Brixham Liberal Democrats have selected Julian Brazil as their parliamentary candidate for the Totnes constituency. Julian was the candidate at the last General Election and is a well known local Councillor. He was selected unanimously by local members at a meeting in Totnes. Speaking after the meeting, Julian said:

  • Article: Apr 10, 2014

    Yesterday, the Lib Dem president, Tim Farron MP, launched the North East Lib Dems Europe campaign. Speaking about the European elections on 22nd May, Tim said it was a straight fight between the Lib Dems and UKIP, between IN vs Out.

    "If you want to leave Europe and risk the UK's future in the world then you vote UKIP. If, however, you think North East jobs are worth fighting for, and the peace and security that comes from being the EU is worth fighting for, there's only one party that's the party of in and that's the Liberal Democrats.

  • Article: Apr 10, 2014

    Nick Clegg has today announced an extra £300 million to help growing businesses and create tens of thousands of jobs across England.

    The £300 million forms part of the Liberal Democrat's Regional Growth Fund, which is now being delivered in Government. The Fund is designed to unlock billions of pounds of private sector investment and create sustainable employment and growth in a wide range of sectors across the country.

  • Article: Apr 9, 2014

    The Lib Dem Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander MP, has today outlined his proposals for a Mansion Tax. In a speech on tax this morning, Danny described some of the details of the Tax, which would apply on homes worth over £2 million.

    The Liberal Democrats first proposed our Mansion Tax in 2009 and have been pushing for it to be implemented in Government, against huge opposition from the Conservatives.

  • Article: Apr 8, 2014

    From September this year, all children between the ages of five and seven will receive free school meals, regardless of family income.

    Despite strong opposition from Tory backbenchers, the Liberal Democrats have fought to deliver free lunches in schools which will improve the lives of many children, as well as saving families £437 a year. Many studies have found that nutritious meals at school improve pupils' health, behaviour, concentration and their overall wellbeing. It makes a real difference in the classrooms, and these findings have been backed by the Department of Education and the Department of Health.

  • Article: Jan 15, 2014

    We eagerly scan the newsagents for headlines and pictures of queuing buses and extra inbound flights bringing the hordes of immigrants from Romania & Bulgaria so confidently predicted by our tabloid print media. Over two weeks after restrictions were lifted, and no doubt to their huge disappointment, such pictures were there none. The UK Border Agency has not published any figures. Holland has - 21 Romanians and 15 Bulgarians. The Romanian Ambassador to the UK says 24 of his countrymen have come here. Wind back to 11th November & the Daily Mail reported " The mayor of two Romanian villages has claimed that up to half of their residents will move to the UK - - - ". According to Private Eye [No 1354] a Romanian Newspaper went to investigate & discovered that an English Lady, who did not disclose she was a journalist, went to village and offered a fantastic job in the UK to an individual who not surprisingly said he would come. He was mortified when told the truth as was the angry mayor. Another putty medal for British tabloid investigative journalism.

  • Article: Jan 15, 2014
    By James Lyons in http://www.mirror.co.uk/

    One Labour MP accused the cuts of bringing "absolute poverty" back to Britain for the first time since the Victorian age

    Inquiry: MPs have voted to explore the impact of Government benefit cutsInquiry: MPs have voted to explore the impact of Government benefit cuts
    George Clerk

    MPs have voted for an inquiry into the impact of Government benefit cuts.

    A cross-party motion calling for a proper assessment of the affects of slashing welfare payments was passed by a majority of 123 after coalition MPs boycotted the vote.

    Labour's shadow Cabinet Office minister Jon Ashworth said the 125 to two result was a fresh evidence that the Government was a "shambles".

    Ministers will be desperate to ignore the result but it will fuel demands for the Tory-led coalition to properly investigate what is happening to the poor and vulnerable.

    It came after veteran Labour MP Michael Meacher warned that the brutal cuts had brought "absolute poverty" back to Britain for the first time since the Victorian age.

    The left-wing former minister accused Chancellor George Osborne of causing the "cruel and unnecessary imposition of poverty".

    And he slammed the "Dickensian" bedroom tax and Atos, the firm tasked with carrying out work capability assessments.

    "I think it is clear something terrible is happening across the face of Britain - we are seeing the return of absolute levels of poverty which have not existed in this country since the Victorian age more than a century ago," he said.

    Michael Meacher in the Commons'Dickensan': Michael Meacher slammed the bedroom tax in the Commons

    Tory MP David T.C. Davies claimed his party was united in backing the welfare cuts - and sparked fury by suggesting that the jobless are "watching television all day".

    Unemployed people should have to take the first job that becomes available to them, the Commons select committee chairman said.

    "That is the way forward and that is what the Government is trying to encourage at the moment, through the use of sanctions and through, frankly, making it difficult for people to just around watching the television all day."

    Labour's David Winnick, said his remarks were proof that the Tories were "in a state of denial over the increasing poverty in this country" as a result of their policies.

    Mr Winnick said it was "a repeat" of Tory claims that growing poverty was "a figment of our imagination" that he first heard under Thatcher.

    "It wasn't a figment of our imagination then, and it's not now."

    Tory MP Sir Peter Bottomley, who jointly proposed the motion, said: "What we need is a commission where we have statistics we can all rely on, as we do at the ONS (Office for National Statisitics), IFS (Institute for Fiscal Studies) and the Office for Budget Responsibility."

    Lib Dem John Hemming, who also put his name to the motion, added: "My own preference would be for a parliamentary inquiry."

  • Article: Jan 6, 2014

    At his monthly News Conference Chancellor George Osborne has warned that a further £25bn spending cuts - much of it from the welfare budget - will be needed after the next election. Only by reducing welfare, he suggested, could a future government avoid either cuts in areas such as education, "big tax rises" or increased borrowing. So there we have Tory ideology in a few words: NO TAX RISES. As the Tories move ever further away from the Party that the LibDems initially supported in coalition Nick Clegg's reaction was that expecting all future sacrifices to come from the working poor was extreme unrealistic and unfair. He said he had a "very different vision" from the Conservatives about how to balance the books during the next Parliament and believed the wealthy should pay more in tax. At his own monthly news conference, Mr Clegg said the "black hole" in the government's finances needed to be addressed and he fully supported the government's aim of eliminating the structural deficit by 2017-8 but he said he strongly opposed welfare cuts on the scale set out by Mr Osborne whose plans showed the Conservatives wanted to "remorselessly pare back the state for ideological reasons" and make "cuts for cuts sake". The LibDems would set out their own plans in due course to do it in a "fairer way".

  • Article: Jan 6, 2014

    This article was originally published in the North Devon Journal.

    As we near the end of 2013, we look back at a turn in Britain's economic fortunes. Employment is at a record high, and unemployment at its lowest in nearly five years. Since the spending review of 2010, a staggering 1.6 million new private sector jobs have been created.

  • Article: Oct 23, 2013

    Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change Ed Davey said:

    "I am saddened to hear of INEOS' plans to place petrochemicals business into administration, particularly because of the impact it will have on the workforce and local community.

    "While respecting INEOS' right to make this decision, it is regrettable that both parties have not managed to negotiate a fair and equitable settlement that delivers a viable business model for the plant.

    "Even at this late stage, I urge INEOS to continue dialogue with the workforce, and Government will offer help and support with this.

    "INEOS have informed us that the refinery will stay open and the management wish to restart full operations as soon as possible.
    "We stand ready to help with discussions between the management and the union to ensure this can happen.

    "Fuel supplies continue to be delivered as usual and there is no current risk of disruption to supplies.

    "I continue to work very closely with the Scottish Government, and other colleagues across Government to share information with them."

Video of Recent Devon County Council Meetings