14 November 2019
Keighley and Ilkley Green Party announce they will not be standing a candidate in the general election on 12th December. The following is a statement from Cllr Ros Brown (Deputy Mayor, Ilkley Town Council) explaining her decision not to stand as the Green Party’s selected candidate.
“When I stand for election at any level of government I commit myself, if elected, to following through on my commitments to electors. In May 2019 I was voted on to Ilkley Town Council and volunteered to take responsibility for leading the Ilkley Neighbourhood Development Plan project. This project had reached a critical stage when the general election was announced with a statutory six week consultation and public engagement period beginning on 7th November. Due to the time of heightened sensitivity leading up to the general election (‘purdah’) if I had stood as a Prospective Parliamentary Candidate I could not also lead the consultation during this time, thus stalling the process until 2020.
The Neighbourhood Plan represents years of work by town councillors from across the political spectrum and experienced volunteers. It is concerned with land use and development and is vital for allowing the people who live, work and do business in Ilkley to shape the future of the town. It is also important for meeting the challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss in a tangible way in our South Pennines environment which extends far beyond Ilkley. I do not want to delay this Plan’s progress which is why I have taken the very difficult decision not to stand in the general election on 12th December.”
Keighley and Ilkley Green Party had to decide at this late date between not standing a candidate or standing a ‘paper’ candidate; someone whose name appears on the ballot paper but does not actively engage in general election campaigning. For some members it was important to stand a paper candidate to enable people to vote Green, however, the majority of members at the meeting on 11th November voted, for several reasons, not to support this option.
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