Lib Dem Manifesto ‘to bring real, positive and lasting change to Welwyn Hatfield’

Jo Swinson launches the 2019 Lib Dem manifesto

Liberal Democrat candidate Paul Zukowskyj said the Party’s manifesto, launched today, would ‘bring real, positive and lasting change to Welwyn Hatfield’.

The manifesto sets out a bold vision to create a more tolerant society and fairer economy. The key headlines are:

  • Stop Brexit. Revoke Article 50 and stay in the EU. This underpins plans to increase public spending by using the fully costed ‘Remain Bonus’ of £50 billion to invest in public services and tackle inequality.
  • Tackle Climate Change. Reduce net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2045 at the latest and call for 80% of the UK's electricity to come from renewable sources by 2030.
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Lib Dems will reverse school cuts in Welwyn Hatfield


The Liberal Democrats have announced that they will spend £10 billion a year more on schools and hire 20,000 more teachers by the end of the next Parliament.

Figures from the National Education Union show that next year (2020/21), schools in Welwyn Hatfield will have seen their budgets cut by £63,786,750 in real terms since 2015, once increasing pupil numbers are taken into account.

This is equivalent to a cut of £239 per pupil. Across the constituency, 23% of schools have seen their spending power cut since 2015.

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Tory ‘nurse tax’ will put NHS services in Welwyn Hatfield under more strain, says Lib Dem candidate


Paul Zukowskyj, Liberal Democrat candidate for Welwyn Hatfield, said the Conservatives ‘nurse tax’ would put additional pressure on Welwyn Hatfield’s NHS services already struggling to cope after years of underfunding.

The Conservatives have pledged to make all those permanently relocating to the UK pay an increased surcharge of £625, further increasing the 'nurse tax', making it harder for EU citizens to live and work in the UK.

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Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dem candidate to make ‘climate crisis a deal-breaker in Parliament’

Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dem candidate to make ‘climate crisis a deal-breaker in Parliament’

Welwyn Hatfield Liberal Democrat candidate Paul Zukowskyj has pledged to make climate crisis a deal-breaker in how he votes in Parliament.

At the national level, Lib Dems have committed to spend £100bn on combating the climate emergency and have set out a clear plan to tackle the climate crisis.

Across a five-year Parliament, Liberal Democrats will spend and invest an extra £100 billion of public finance on climate action and environmental preservation. This includes a new £10 billion renewable power fund to leverage in over £100 billion of extra private climate investment. This will fast-track deployment of clean energy, to make Britain not just the world leader in offshore wind, but also the global number one in tidal power too.

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A&E waiting time figures in Hertfordshire show Tories ‘dismal NHS record’

NHS Surgeons

Only 83.2% of patients arriving at A&E in Hertfordshire and West Essex STP were treated or admitted within four hours in October 2019, according to damning figures published by NHS England.

This is well below the official target of 95% of patients attending A&E being admitted, transferred or discharged within four hours. Nationally, the 95% waiting target hasn’t been met since July 2015. Only 83.6% of patients arriving at A&E across England were treated or admitted in four hours in October, the worst-ever performance since a target was introduced in 2004.

Liberal Democrat candidate for Welwyn Hatfield Paul Zukowskyj said: “It is shameful that patients in Hertfordshire are being abandoned, be it waiting for hours for treatment in A&E or for months in pain for routine operations.”

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Brexit is ‘blocking economic growth in Welwyn Hatfield’

Money down the drain

Britain's economy has grown at the slowest annual rate in almost a decade, according to official figures, from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) published this week.

Year-on-year growth in the three months to end-September slowed to 1% from 1.3% in the second quarter, the ONS said on Monday, slowing growth to its lowest rate in almost a decade.

Welwyn Hatfield Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate Paul Zukowskyj said that Brexit had already cost taxpayers at least £55 billion in lost growth and that this impact could be felt on the continuing squeeze of local services such as our NHS, roads, schools and public transport.

He said: “These growth figures are not a cause for celebration. Instead they show clearly that Brexit is blocking economic growth in the UK and in our local communities where residents are struggling to go about their daily lives because of chronic under-investment. There’s now tens of thousands of civil servants working on Brexit. Their salaries are costing us dear. Instead of working on better roads, better care, better services, they’re spending all their time on Brexit.”

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Footbridge closing

Councillors Malcolm Cowan, Frank Marsh and Siobhan Elam on the footbridge at Welwyn Garden City railway station

It has recently been announced that the footbridge between Hydeway and the railway station in Welwyn Garden Ciy will be closed for 4 months for upgrading and repainting. While this long-overdue refurbishment is welcomed, Lib Dem councillors have expressed concern over the timing and duration of this closure.

Malcolm Cowan, Liberal Democrat group leader and a Peartree councillor said “The work is desperately needed and overdue, and it is great that there is finally agreement to get the it done, but the length of the closure will come as a massive shock to my constituents who use the bridge to get to and from the station and the town centre.”

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Paul Zukowskyj makes his climate change pledge

Paul Zukowskyj makes his climate change pledge

Paul Zukowskyj, Lib Dem candidate for Welwyn Hatfield has signed up to the Friends of the Earth Climate Change Pledge:

"I’ll make the climate crisis a deal-breaker in how I vote in Parliament. I’ll vote to support measures that help us rapidly cut greenhouse gas emissions and build a fairer and greener society."

Effective Action on climate change is a corner stone of Lib Dem policy. Citizens’ assemblies will be convened to decide what action should be taken on the climate crisis the Green Investment Bank will be revived.The Lib Dems have also committed to bring back a department of climate change, give local government new powers to cut emissions and end fracking.

Our aim is to achieve net-zero carbon status in the UK by 2045 – five years sooner than current government plans.

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Mountains of rubbish – why?

Overflowing recyling bins at Moors Walk and Waitrose

Yet again, Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council is failing local people. The majority of our recyling bins are full to overflowing, and are surrounded by mountains of uncollected rubbish abandoned by frustrated residents.

When asked to comment, Malcolm Cowan, our group leader on the council, said "All parties signed our Climate Emergency motion recently. An absolute basic is that there are proper recycling facilities, yet every site I visited this weekend had its paper and cardboard bins rammed full, with loads more left on the ground. – Moors Walk, Haldens, Waitrose car park, Church Road, Woodhall.

"The council will rightly say people should not dump their paper and card on the ground, but we have to make it easy to recycle, not hard. Anyone going off for a day and wanting to recycle their waste on the way is not going to want to take it with them when the bins are full.

"And all the sites had black sacks as well – I can only imagine what is in those.

"This is far from the first time the collection system has failed – why has the problem not been sorted? The council needs to step up, and fast."

Welwyn Hatfield Local Housing Plan ‘Shambolic’


Welwyn Hatfield Liberal Democrats have been critical of the Borough’s Local Plan for years. The Liberal Democrats consider the plan badly thought through, due to its adverse impacts on residents access to green belt and green spaces, while failing to deliver sufficient social housing or the schools, NHS services, road improvements or sports facilities that all residents need.

The latest letter from the Planning Inspector, received on August 8th, suggesting the council should consider withdrawing the plan and starting again, was a body-blow to the council.

This week, however, the committee tasked with discussing the Local Plan and progress towards it, the Cabinet Planning and Parking Panel (CPPP), due to meet on 12th September, was cancelled without reason and without notice.

Lib Dem CPPP committee member, Cllr Paul ZukowskyjCllr Paul Zukowskyj, Lib Dem member of the CPPP committee, commented “I received an email. Short and sweet, ‘committee cancelled’. No reason was given. Perhaps they think there’s nothing to discuss?”

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