City A.M.: There’s a practical way to boost home-building – release surplus public sector land in the capital

City AM Boost House Building Article

LBC: Conservative Mayoral Debate

As one of four Conservative candidates for Mayor, I have unparalleled knowledge and experience of London and not just the pockets in which I have served. I am proud to have attended over 64 public meetings in total in all 32 London boroughs, listening to the views of Londoners.

Here’s a link to the section called ‘Ask Me Anything’ in last night LBC’s debate where Andrew Boff, Syed Kamall and Zac Goldsmith were able to ask me any question they liked about my plans for London:

 

Watch the LBC Conservative Mayoral Debate in full:

 

Meeting and addressing grassroots members

SG Grassroots 1  IMG_7439

 

Last night’s Triborough event. I really enjoyed the meeting and the opportunity to address grassroots members in central London.

Don’t miss your chance to vote! You must register to vote for your Conservative candidate for Mayor of London and registration closes on Monday 14th September.

Click here to register

Greenhalgh – “Fare cuts are vital to secure London’s future prosperity.”

With London’s economy growing at twice the rate of the rest of the country, it is fashionable to conclude that its future growth and prosperity is assured. The implication is that the challenge for a future Mayor is to grapple with the problems that arise from this future growth. However, I do not believe that London’s future growth and prosperity can be taken for granted. We should remind ourselves that London’s population was in steep decline for 40 years. It has taken another 35 years since 1980 just to get back to the same number of people living in London as there were in 1940!

London’s population density is half that of New York or Paris. London covers a very large area even if by world city standards its population is not as great as others – by way of comparison New York city with 8.5 million people covers some 305 square miles whereas London has 8.6 million over 607 square miles. Londoners therefore are more likely to have to travel further on average to get to work and yet tube and rail fares in London are far and away more expensive than any similar metro/rail systems in any other comparable city in the world. This disparity if not checked will act as a brake on future London growth. It is not just desirable to reduce the burden of tube and rail fares, it is an absolute necessity if we are to continue to provide a prosperous future for our citizens. 

As leader of Hammersmith & Fulham council, people told me that I would not be able to reduce council tax and yet we cut it 6 times over 8 years such that it ended up the 3rd lowest council tax in the country. When I promise, I deliver! Now people tell me I will not be able to reduce tube/rail fares. As a Conservative London Mayoral candidate I have pledged to cut tube and rail fares by 3 per cent each year so that the average fare payer would be £900 better off over a mayoral term.   

TfL is a multi-billion pound a year entity which owns 5,700 acres (c9 square miles, equivalent to bigger than the entire borough of Camden) of land, 1,000 shop units and 61 car parks.  TfL does not need to retain all this land to deliver a world class public transport network! It is wrong for TfL to have the ambition to become the London’s largest development company. If its land is surplus to operational requirements it should be sold in a way which would provide a better return. The key to building more homes in London is better use of public land. In Hammersmith & Fulham, I sold off over £100 million worth of council property, which delivered hundreds of new homes. In my current role as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime(MOPAC) for London, I have taken the police out of buildings and put them on the streets in neighbourhoods. Releasing underutilised police buildings will have raised £1 billion to reinvest in policing. However the benefits go beyond policing and also boost London’s economy with these buildings providing at least 4,000 new homes, 12,000 jobs, 9 new schools and 10 acres of open land for London. If elected Mayor of London, I will take the same approach with TfLand have pledged to sell 1,000 acres of surplus land in my first term. That’s enough for 50,000 new homes and would raise £20 billion. TfL is also by the way a massive procurer of multi-million pound contracts as well as maintaining a huge bureaucracy occupying large costly central London locations. As I have done in the past at Hammersmith & Fulham and MOPAC, the organisation will need to be restructured, improved and made fit for purpose.

In these ways I will be able to reduce the proportion of the fares going to cover overheads and maintain the capital investment programme which is so necessary to delivering the greater capacity (and the increased number of travellers) on the Tube. It is right that fare payers should reap the reward of this in the form of cheaper fares. In this way a future Mayor can tackle the high cost of living burden on Londoners and help to secure the future prosperity of our city.

London Live: “I will cut TfL ticket prices by 3%”

London Live

(London Live)

Mayoral hopeful and Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Stephen Greenhalgh said if he becomes Mayor Londoners will see the cost of thier commute go down.

He says fares will be cut by 3 per cent, in his plan to treat TfL with a stronger business-like focus.

The hustings debate was chaired by the Evening Standard’s Editor, Sarah Sands, held at the Royal Geographical Society in Kensington.

The London Mayoral candidates that took part were; Zac Goldsmith the Conservative MP for Richmond Park, Stephen Greenhalgh the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Syed Kamall the Conservative member of the European Parliament for London, and Andrew Boff, a London Assembly Member.

WATCH HERE

Evening Standard: Pledging to cut travel fares

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Stephen Greenhalgh (Picture: Lucy Young)

by PIPPA CRERAR, BEN MORGAN

Stephen Greenhalgh

Deputy Mayor for  Policing and Crime

We have an infantile system of government where we have to go and get money in our city where there’s an economy of £350 billion. London’s economy is growing and I would like to see greater devolution. We already raise money so we should be able to keep that money.  We raise the money over here and spend it over here, that’s where we will be held to account.

In my area of policing and crime it is critical to make sensible savings. Let’s ask for devolution of London’s criminal justice system, let’s get a system to focus on reducing reoffending. Let’s have a service where people work together, share control rooms and save money.

 

BBC London 94.9: With Vanessa Feltz

BBC London 94.9

With Vanessa Feltz (BBC London 94.9)

A pleasure to chat with Vanessa Feltz on BBC London. You can catch the whole thing from 2hrs 5mins – or jump to 2hrs 48mins for her very entertaining Mayoral Candidate Quiz!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p030494y

Evening Standard hustings

 

I really enjoyed my opportunity to prove to people at the Royal Geographical Society in Kensington that I have a clear plan for London and the credentials required to deliver on it.

Conservative Way Forward Reception

Great chance for a bit of healthy camaraderie between myself and Syed Kamall at the Conservative Way Forward reception in Westminster!

CONSERVATIVE LONDON MAYORAL SELECTION

YOU DECIDE – LONDONERS INVITED TO HELP THE PARTY CHOOSE ITS CANDIDATE

The Conservative Party is holding an online primary to select its candidate for the 2016 London Mayoral Election. Anyone in London who is on the electoral roll can register to vote to help the party choose who will stand for the Conservatives in the election next year.

The current Mayor of London Boris Johnson was selected as the Conservative candidate in 2007 using a primary and the party is again giving all Londoners the opportunity to be involved in the process.

Register by the 14th September 2015

Click here to Register

Evening Standard: Key workers ‘should be home owners’

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City A.M.: London mayoral hopeful Stephen Greenhalgh renews pledge to cut Tube fares

Stephen Greenhalgh pledges to sell off at least 1,000 acres of land currently owned by TfL (Source: Getty)

Stephen Greenhalgh pledges to sell off at least 1,000 acres of land currently owned by TfL (Source: Getty)

by Lauren Fedor (City A.M. Website)

London mayoral hopeful Stephen Greenhalgh has said there is “a deal to be done” between City Hall and the government to cut Tube and rail fares for commuters.

Greenhalgh, who will set out his new plan for London this morning at a rally outside City Hall, told City A.M. that he is confident that he could reduce Tube and rail fares in the capital by three per cent annually, saving the average Zone 1-3 Travelcard holder £900 during his first term in office.

Greenhalgh said he would compensate for the loss of revenue by selling off at least 1,000 acres of land currently owned by Transport for London, which he estimates will net City Hall £20bn over the course of four years.

Greenhalgh, who serves as deputy mayor for policing and crime, has also vowed to review bus routes to improve efficiency.

City A.M.: London mayoral elections: Stephen Greenhalgh argues the capital needs a more joined-up approach to its emergency services

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“Firefighters could do more to back up their colleagues in the ambulance service” (Source: Getty)

by Stephen Greenhalgh (City A.M. Website)

London’s ambulance service is in crisis. Last year Prime Minister David Cameron was forced to defend its performance, which was the worst in the country with only 66.5 per cent of ambulances reaching the most serious 999 calls within eight minutes. The NHS target is 75 per cent

This is because the ambulance service is run off its feet with a utilisation rate of over 90 per cent. It receives more emergency calls than ever – around 1.7 million each year – and responds to more than a million emergency incidents.

At the same time there are currently 370 vacancies in London, despite the London Ambulance Service going twice to Australia in recent months and recruiting 350 paramedics.

Meanwhile the number of deaths and injuries from fires continues to fall as well as the number of arson incidents and dwelling fires. The total number of fires attended has dropped from 27,000 to 21,000 in the last two years. The number of 999 calls responded has fallen even further to 171,000.

In fact the fire service utilisation rate is just seven per cent. All that means firefighters could do more to back up their colleagues in the ambulance service to ensure that lives are not lost.

In other parts of the country, such as Northumbria, training is being given to allow them to support the ambulance service.

In London it is the Met Police which provide the back-up,  with frontline officers who are not medically trained, despite having to take more than five million 999 calls a year. This situation cannot continue. It is time for a faster and more integrated emergency service in London.

Unlike the rest of the country all three emergency services cover the same geographical area but they are answerable to three different Whitehall departments. Responsibility for emergency services should fall to the Mayor of London and the performance of London’s emergency services should be a matter for the Mayor to defend, rather than the Prime Minister.

This week I attended a Treasury roundtable on public service reform of emergency services by Greg Hands MP, the chief secretary to the Treasury.

There is an opportunity for London to lead the country with co-location of call handling sites and a streamlining of call despatch and response functions.

Budgets can be squeezed by rationalising building, IT and other back office support services so that more money supports frontline emergency services. We need to be bold and the challenge for a future Mayor is to lead the charge.

I am up for that challenge and will take my lead from Rudy Guiliani, who created the Office of Emergency Management when he was Mayor of New York City.

He merged the fire and ambulance services by executive order. I met the team that he appointed who are still in post. They yearned for the strong leadership that Mayor Guiliani provided.

As one of them remarked at the time: “It was no big deal. One day I wore green pants and the next day I wore blue pants.”

The Greenhalgh Plan4London

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The Mayor of London sits at the apex of government in our capital city. The role was created to shape and improve public services in London. We need our public services to be well run and to be improved in order to secure London’s place as a global city and safeguard the future prosperity of all Londoners. I have a Plan for London to do just that and it is a plan which gives all Londoners hope.

The Greenhalgh Plan4London will:

1. Cut tube and rail fares by 3% annually.

This ‘Fare Deal for Londoners’ will save the average Zone 1-3 Travelcard holder £900 over 4 years. I will protect front line capital investment in tube and rail services while growing income from external sources including TfL’s extensive land holdings, introducing modern operating technology and rooting out inefficiency in back office functions and procurement. I will negotiate for the Mayor to take control of all suburban rail services serving London.

2. Build 100,000 new low cost homes for Londoners to own over 4 years.

I will deliver 50,000 of these as affordable homes for essential city workers – the police officers, paramedics, firefighters, nurses, doctors and teachers who keep the city alive. I will build 50,000 starter homes to own on TfL and GLA land. I will ensure that these homes are lived in by people who have lived or worked in London for at least 3 years and not left vacant. I will negotiate with government to change the method of securing public contributions from developers for new housing so that a prescribed share of their end profit is always obtained and not just an up-front contribution that often represents poor value.

3. Maintain a safe capital city on reduced budgets.

I will use council tax and growth from business rates to protect neighbourhood policing with 5,000 dedicated officers. I will deliver a faster emergency service response by integrating support functions, rationalising buildings and merging control rooms. I will support the Met Police to prevent more crime through innovation and smarter use of technology and I will champion devolution of London’s criminal justice system in order to reduce first time criminals dramatically, ensure swifter justice for victims of crime and reduce re-offending rates in London – saving taxpayers £500 million.

4. Tackle the air pollution which blights our city. 

I will ban all dirty diesel vehicles that fail to meet ‘Euro 6 emission’ standards (i.e. the dirtiest trucks, vans and buses) from central London as fast as humanly possible. I will ensure the faster substitution of TfL’s more polluting buses with the latest hybrid and hydrogen powered models. I will encourage the uptake of electric vehicles by more than tripling the existing number of charging points.

5. Improve the quality of London’s bus service.

I will ensure that every bus becomes a “jobs express” for shift workers whilst freezing bus fares for 4 years. I will ensure that bus routes are optimised so that the services are provided in the places and at the times when demand is the greatest and I pledge not to cut overall bus mileage.

City A.M.: London mayoral elections: Tackling air quality is a priority, but we must go beyond the nanny-state approach in addressing pollution

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Air pollution is not just a public health emergency, but an economic one too (Source: Getty).

At their hustings last week the six Labour mayoral hopefuls called on Londoners to change their behaviour to tackle the scourge of air pollution.
Dame Tessa Jowell wanted Londoners to give up driving in in their cars. She would pedestrianise the centre of London and only allow electric vehicles to come into London. David Lammy exhorted working parents to get their children to walk or cycle instead of driving their kids to school. Sadiq Khan’s answer was to spend lots more money on cycling, the next generation of electric buses and two million trees.
Tackling air pollution is clearly a huge challenge. However, the next mayor needs a plan that goes beyond this nanny state approach of telling Londoners how to lead their lives or cynical uncosted spending pledges.
Under Boris Johnson, back in 2010 London became the first city in the world to publish a study estimating the health effects of air pollution.
The King’s College Report, commissioned by the GLA, suggested that the equivalent of 4,300 deaths in London during 2008 had been attributable to long-term exposure to particulate matter.
The latest report from King’s College includes  the impact of nitrogen dioxide, and suggests that the equivalent of up to 5,900 deaths were attributable to long-term exposure to nitrogen dioxide in 2010.
The same research argues air pollution reduces average life expectancy in London by 25 months. The average Londoner exposed to 2010 levels of pollution through their lives could lose around nine months life from particle pollution and up to 16 months from nitrogen dioxide.
Air pollution is not just a public health emergency but an economic one too: London will suffer hugely if a future mayor fails to tackle this problem. Businesses now choose to locate in Shanghai rather than Beijing largely because of air pollution in their capital city.
London is currently ranked 15th among world cities for air quality – my mission is to get our capital into the top 10.
My plan to achieve this starts with a ban on diesel vehicles that do not meet emission standards from the congestion charge zone as fast as humanly possible.
The City of London has shown the way forward by negotiating four clean air zones with Addison Lee so that 370 of their drivers will switch from petrol to electric using technology to inform the drivers when they enter the zones.
I will also increase the congestion charge for all commercial vehicles – including buses – that fail to meet these emission standards. Diesel buses that miss the required level will be removed within my first year of office.
I will bring forward the requirement that all newly licenced taxis must have zero-emission capability by 2018 to July 2017. I would also encourage greater take up of electric cars by expand the scheme to 5,000 charge points by 2018, up from 1400 charge points currently. And I would double the size of the mayor’s air quality fund, set up by Boris in 2012.
There is no doubt that tackling air pollution is a priority. But that plan must be deliverable.

Evening Standard: Tory mayoral candidate Stephen Greenhalgh: ‘Sell off TfL land to fund fare cuts’

A sell-off of Transport for London land could net London taxpayers a £20 billion windfall to fund fare cuts and Tube upgrades, a Tory mayoral candidate said today.

Stephen Greenhalgh claims TfL is sitting on hundreds of acres of prime central London development space that could be sold to fund schemes including a blanket three per cent fares cut, which he has promised if elected. TfL has suggested the plan would require £1.9 billion by 2020-21.

But Mr Greenhalgh said: “We could get 10 times that amount from selling land. You would also be able to invest a lot of money into capital projects that TfL wants to carry out. TfL needs to stop acting like a developer and concentrate on running its services.”

He believes there are at least 1,000 acres of developable TfL land, worth about £20 million an acre.

A TfL spokeswoman said the organisation has a £16 billion “savings and efficiencies target” for 2020-12 and a plan to maximise revenue from commercial assets, including property, to generate a further £3.4 billion.

She added: “Our modern approach … will give us a long-term sustainable revenue stream now and well into the future, which a one-off sale of all assets would simply not deliver.”

City A.M.: It’s time for a London mayor who wants the job – Stephen Greenhalgh

City A.M.online article by Greg Hands

In September 1993, I was in a bar in New York, a self-styled “British Alehouse” on the Upper East Side. There was a man speaking: “I want to be the next mayor of New York!” he boomed. That man’s name? Rudy Giuliani. And the most striking thing was how much thought he had given – not just to the campaign, but to doing the job itself. He was focused on working hard for New York, particularly tackling crime and improving public transport. Two months later, Giuliani won a famous, underdog victory. He went on to become probably the most successful mayor of New York City ever.

It is important that politicians want to do the actual jobs they run for. That is why, for me, the stand-out candidate running to be our next mayor is Stephen Greenhalgh: London’s deputy mayor for policing & crime.

Stephen is a street-fighter with a track record. He has 19 years’ experience in London government, notably as the greatest council leader we ever had in Hammersmith & Fulham. Stephen defied all conventional wisdom, took on the establishment – and won. He slashed council tax five out of six years, by 3 per cent annually. He cut crime in the borough, made it the free school capital of Britain, and encouraged regeneration. Under Stephen’s leadership, Hammersmith & Fulham won “Council of the Year”, and accolades across London and Great Britain for its achievements.

As deputy mayor, Stephen has been a problem-solver: cutting crime yet further, selling unneeded police stations to provide capital receipts and sites for new free schools, and keeping police officers on the streets. We all need to be doing more with less, and Stephen is the man with a plan for London’s future. He has a costed policy of achieving a 3 per cent cut in Tube fares. He also has a very strong business background, which London needs, having set up his own successful medical publishing company.

Recently, I have been to Conservative Party hustings, and heard our various candidates set out their stalls. It is a hugely impressive field. But my friend Stephen stands out for two reasons.

First, he knows his onions. His knowledge of the challenges that London faces is very strong. Second, Stephen seems to me to be the candidate most wanting to do the actual job on offer! Some of the Labour candidates, in particular, seem to be eking out the dying days of their political careers, or looking for a role to fill the years of opposition that the Labour Party faces nationally in Westminster.

I know Stephen Greenhalgh well. Cut him and he bleeds London. He does not want to be an MP, or a member of the House of Lords, or the European Parliament – or any similar role. He is a Londoner first and foremost – the candidate who has done a proper apprenticeship to be mayor of London.

One final thought – Giuliani did eventually run for US President in 2008, and his bid failed after just a few weeks. It was clear that a city mayor was what suited him best. We should think in similar terms about London for the election next May. Let’s get a proper Londoner, with a plan for London’s future. Let’s choose Stephen Greenhalgh.

Greg Hands is Conservative MP for Chelsea & Fulham.

Cllr John Moss: Stephen Greenhalgh has the vision and the ability to be a great Mayor of London

Conservative Home article by Cllr John Moss

John Moss is a Waltham Forest Councillor and Deputy Chairman Political for Chingford and Woodford Green. He stood for the City and East seat in the 2012 London Assembly election and for Hackney South and Shoreditch in the 2005 General Election

It is a simple fact of the voting system that the next Mayor of London will be either the Cons

ervative or Labour candidate – and, as Londoners have got used to having a Mayor, they are increasingly looking at track record and competence, not celebrity.

In the previous elections, London had well-known names to choose from, notably Ken Livingstone and Boris Johnson. That is not going to be the case this time. All the Labour candidates are political insiders. Tessa Jowell’s connection with the Olympics is fading and Diane Abbott benefits from exposure to perhaps 500,000 viewers, every Thursday at 11.30pm, after Question Time. The others have little name recognition outside their own parliamentary or specialist constituencies.

Of the Conservatives, no candidate has significant name recognition amongst ordinary voters in all parts of London. But whoever is chosen will have a major public profile because they are the Conservative candidate. That’s when track record and competence will become important. Stephen Greenhalgh has that track record, both in terms of beating Labour and in delivering on the election’s most important policy area: housing.

In 2006, Stephen led the Conservatives to victory in Hammersmith and Fulham, and beat Labour again in 2010. He improved council services, paid for extra police to cut crime, yet still cut Council Tax in five out of the six years he was responsible for setting it. Hammersmith and Fulham residents now pay the third lowest Council Tax in London after Westminster and Wandsworth. He also brought council housing back under the control of the borough, scrapping Labour’s ALMO structure, and he took on the huge challenge of driving forward the redevelopment of the area around Earls Court.

Earls Court was a poor exhibition venue. I know – I wrote the brief for London’s newest exhibition space, Excel, when I worked for the London Docklands Development Corporation, and every exhibition business we spoke to hated Earls Court. Ever since Excel opened, Earls Court has been going downhill.

In 2007, Stephen asked me to advise him on the redevelopment deal that was being put together between the council, Transport for London and Capital & Counties Properties. I saw how hard it was going to be as Labour threw everything at the project to stop it. It would have been easy for Stephen to throw in the towel and stick with 800 or so council homes on a run-down estate. But he didn’t take the easy option. He took the right decision, which was to secure the redevelopment of poorly built, expensive to heat homes which would have needed millions to be spent on them just to keep them as they were.

Contrary to Labour’s scare-mongering, every single social home will be replaced, most tenants will only have to move once and all will stay within the immediate area. There will be about the same again number of new affordable homes and in total the scheme will deliver almost 7,000 new homes for London. Stephen basically did a Housing Zone before Boris even thought of them.

At the same time, Stephen and I wrote a pamphlet about how we needed to look again at how we do housing welfare. His insights into how the system traps people in dependency and his passion to change that was translated in to real action after the 2010 General Election. Having retained control in Hammersmith and Fulham, he set about using the new freedoms granted by Eric Pickles to build low-cost homes for sale on infill plots on council estates, mirroring Wandsworth’s successful “hidden homes” programme.

Boris called Stephen on the day of his re-election in 2012 to appoint him as his Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime. In the last four years, Stephen has re-shaped the Metropolitan Police with fewer senior officers but more PCs and Sergeants patrolling the streets. Redundant police stations have been sold off – often controversially – but his argument that an officer in a police station isn’t preventing crime is borne out by a continued fall in victim-based crime.

Finally, Stephen knows how to use the City Hall machine and to work constructively with the boroughs to deliver real change. The key to building more homes in London is better use of public land. In Hammersmith and Fulham, Stephen sold off over £100 million worth of council property, which delivered hundreds of new homes. In his current role he has taken the police out of buildings and put them on the streets, releasing property which is delivering thousands of homes. Along the way, this approach raised £1 billion to reinvest in policing. If elected Mayor, Stephen will take the same approach with Transport for London and has pledged to sell 1,000 acres of surplus land in his first term. That’s enough for 50,000 new homes.

I regard two of the other Conservative candidates for the mayoralty, Andrew Boff and Syed Kamall, as personal friends and it is hard to set that aside, but none of his competitors can match Stephen’s experience and track record. He knows how to beat Labour, he has the courage to take the tough decisions that will be needed to start to solve London’s housing crisis and he has the vision to move our city forward as a place for people to live, work and build a future for themselves and their families. He should be the Conservative candidate for Mayor of London.

Evening Standard: Let City Hall have new power over education, says Tory hopeful

TMS33C3.pdfClick edit button to change this text.

LBC 97.3 Ken Livingstone and David Mellor interview

 

Programme(s) LBC 97.3 Ken Livingstone and David Mellor
Date & time Saturday 25 July 2015 10.36
Subject/Interviewee Interview – Stephen Greenhalgh

 

Ken Livingstone, presenter: We’re moving straight from who should be the next Labour leader to who should be the next Tory Mayor of London, and whilst we’re talking, I suspect, all the candidates are being interviewed and vetted one by one by some, you know, ghastly little committee of people poking and prying at them, and…

David Mellor, presenter: Whose sole qualification has to be they’ll do what Dave wants them to.

KL: Well, there are these rumours that they’re going to try and rig the panel of candidates so just Zac Goldsmith flows through. So we’ve got somebody here who has been deeply embedded in Boris’s administration, in charge of policing in London, Stephen Greenhalgh.

Welcome, Stephen.

Stephen Greenhalgh, Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime: Welcome, Ken, thank you.

KL: Now, why are you running for it?

SG: Well, because I want the job. I think it’s a fantastic job to have the opportunity to shape the greatest global city on earth. You know, as much as anybody, except for Boris perhaps, just how much the job can achieve in London if the powers are used for the people of London.

KL: But you’ve got a disadvantage, because Zac Goldsmith is saying ‘if I’m the candidate, I’ll, you know, give £3 million to run my campaign and all that, and you can’t find £3 million’. Do you think this is right that someone can actually almost buy the thing?

DM: Buy the candidacy, anyway, yeah.

KL: Come on, slag off Zac Goldsmith, please.

SG: Well, I’m not going to, because I’m going to run my own campaign and it will be the way I started my political career from a ward then a ward chairman with my two friends, close friends, that I worked with, and then we built that branch up, and then I got onto the association and then became a local councillor to the very ward where my parents came to when they came to London. I served there for 16.5 years. I was a council leader for six years.

DM: Yeah, leader of Hammersmith, we need people to know that…

SG: Leader of Hammersmith and Fulham Council, and I worked my way up from the bottom, if you like, and I make no apologies that my campaign will be much more of a grassroots campaign.

DM: So you and Ken, you and…

KL: We’re the same. We’ve got…

DM: That was the point exactly I was going to make, so why isn’t he a lefty?

KL: No, but during the break, you and Stephen were talking…

DM: I’m sorry…

KL: …and both of you were getting on fine, because your local government were at your fingertips.

DM: I have this sense that someone with Stephen’s experience is much more likely to be a more effective mayor than someone who sort of breezes in with a Pepsodent smile and some money in his pocket.

KL: I think this is the problem with our politics. I mean, when you and I came into politics, David, everybody broadly followed this route. You did something local like run a small business or, you know, regional union official or something like that; now it’s all these people straight out of doing politics and philosophy at Oxford or Cambridge, and then political advisor and then they’re… I mean, the tragedy is, and I’ve said before, I mean, Cameron and Obama and Blair, the first thing they get to run is the whole country.

DM: Well, I mean, I remember, funnily enough, it’s very interesting for you to say that, a friend of mine, who was a very successful businessman, a very successful fixer for the Democratic Party, senior ambassador under Clinton – he was one of Clinton’s main backers – he assured me in Obama’s first election that, you know, although Obama, he agreed, had been a social worker in Chicago only four years before he ran for President, Obama was so bright, he’d been an editor of the Harvard Law Review, he’d make a great job of it. Well, I spent part of my New Year’s holiday with dear old Ed [Elson] in Florida last year and I said “How are you feeling about it, Ed?” and then he said “well, he’s been a disaster”, and part of the reason he said, you know, he thinks the people who got him elected, and the people who run a government, made every mistake in the book, and we even have Obama – we’ll be talking about this later on – talking about, you know, the things he failed to do, gun control, all that sort of stuff and…

SG: Well Cuomo got it right, didn’t he? You govern in prose but you have to campaign in poetry and very few people can do both.

DM: Exactly. Now, look…

KL: Hang on, before we move on, while we’re still dealing with our origins. I mean, before you got into politics, what was your chosen career? What did you do?

SG: Well, I’m going to disappoint you, Ken, because the only place I’m going to go to is Cambridge, my dad was the first person in his family to go to university, and I grew up with maps of Cambridge colleges in front of me, and I went to Trinity, because I was taken there as a kid. I left there and joined Procter and Gamble, worked my way through brand management. It was the boot camp of marketing and learning how to run businesses. I tried to set up my business. It didn’t work out the first time and eventually got that going, and it’s now a local business and employs nearly 30 people.

KL: Yeah, right, so you’ve actually run and you’ve learnt from mistakes.

SG: If you get it wrong, don’t make the same mistake twice. That’s my definition of stupidity.

DM: Now, Stephen, what is troubling me is the manner in which… we know how far… and I obviously don’t expect you to criticise David Cameron, but you know, we don’t need to, I can do all that’s needed on that, who in his attempts at party management, he has an A-list, a lot of manipulation going on, very little is left to chance. There are rumours that what they’re looking for is only to let two or three people through to the short list that is then voted on by Tory Party members, and since this is more of a coronation than an election, there are two other candidates, the leader of Kensington and Chelsea Council…

SG: Westminster City Council.

DM: Westminster, sorry. A woman who is, obviously, gifted but hasn’t been around for very long and an MEP whose name even eludes me, such as you who is a household name. The worry is that you will not survive today, and yet, how can they not allow to go on the ballot someone who is deputy mayor and who has a record of service to the Conservative Party at local government and at London Government level stretching back more than two decades. How could that happen?

SG: Well, it has not yet happened. And the truth is that I think the party needs competition, competition is a good thing, it is one of the reasons that I think and believe that enterprise is important, it is what drives growth and growth can drive prosperity and it can benefit everybody. And if we have a coronation, I don’t think that is good for anybody, including the front-runner.

KL: Let’s work on the assumption you get the nomination, which Labour Candidate would you most fear? Which do you think would be your strongest opponent?

SG: Do you know I started watching… I mean, I concentrate on my own race, but I am interested that David Lammy nicked an idea of yours around this bond idea, which is, effectively, the values…

KL: Not James Bond, it is municipal bond.

DM: Is Municipal Bond James Bond’s cousin or what?

SG: And I think that idea of using the inherent value of the land in London to borrow against and build things is absolutely the right way to go. That is how you can shape a city, so it is a good idea, I will nick it.

KL: This is the key thing, it is investment. Every economics and [inaudible] investment, and there is no discussion about this taking place in the Labour leadership contest or our investment that was in Britain basically the lowest since the Second World War. And if you look at… London’s success today is based on the fact that we did get a lot of investment in transport, in the Olympics and now Crossrail coming along and that is what attracts the private sector to then come.

DM: Stephen, can I just press you just one more time on this.

SG: Sure.

DM: Are you worried that this small group of people who will be evaluating you today for reasons I cannot begin to comprehend might prefer to have Zac running against a woman and someone with an Asian heritage, rather than a tough guy like you. Could you accept it, if you were excluded, when you have done so much? Don’t you deserve – regardless of what they say – your chance with the people.

SG: David, life is not fair, but I am going to give it my best shot, and that is all I can do. I can’t control the committee. I don’t know many of the people on the committee, I will do my best, and then I will have to take stock.

DM: Why do the Tories not trust the people? I mean, I appreciate they have got one or two weirdos like Ivan Massow, who has just made himself self-publicist and a whole lot of other things. I was saying, when you have got John Bercow and Ivan Massow, you realise if your name ends in O-W, you have got problems. But basically, what is it, why don’t the Tories trust the people. The job of the Evaluating Committee should be to say whether that person, and it was last time, because I know various people who were on that committee last time, when Boris went through. The assessment was, ‘was that person capable of being a credible candidate’? How can they run it on any other basis? And manifestly, you are capable of not just being a credible candidate; you’re capable of being an extremely credible candidate, so why don’t they trust the Tory voters to make that decision.

SG: Well, that is a really nice one. I think we have to see. I personally believe as every person in the race that has commentated on this that we should have a very broad field. It doesn’t cost anymore to have more names on a ballot paper. So frankly, I would have everybody on the ballot paper and have very… you know, and just let people decide.

KL: You should say when you get to that committee later on in the day, you should point out that Labour has allowed everyone who got a nomination from the CLP on that list, and if the Tories rig this, we might mention it during the campaign once or twice.

DM: Well, indeed.

SG: I think we already have, Ken, actually, to fair.

DM: Zac Goldsmith is a maverick, a wealthy maverick who will abort the nomination is a disaster waiting to happen, but there we are. The last person I said that to was a man called Archer, when I said to him, private dinner, ‘Jeffrey, why are you running to be Mayor of London, you cannot survive the scrutiny of an election campaign?’ and with his great respect for truth, Jeffrey said, ‘Well, I haven’t decided to run anyway’, when he had already appointed his treasurer and god knows what. Anyway, this is LBC, it is 10.46

LBC 97.3 Stephen Greenhalgh Interview by Iain Dale

 

Taken from LBC 97.3 Stephen Greenhalgh Interview by Iain Dale 20/07/2015 17:17:54

Evening Standard: Stephen Greenhalgh challenges rival mayoral candidates to match Tube fare cuts pledge

Deputy mayor Stephen Greenhalgh believes he can beat Labour candidates in the race to City Hall (Picture: Lucy Young)

Deputy mayor Stephen Greenhalgh believes he can beat Labour candidates in the race to City Hall (Picture: Lucy Young)

Stephen Greenhalgh is nothing if not gutsy. When the deputy mayor announced he would cut Tube fares by three per cent a year to launch his bid to succeed Boris Johnson at City Hall, he ruffled feathers among his Tory colleagues.

Now, days after outgoing Transport for London chief Sir Peter Hendy explicitly warned that such a move could put services at risk, the former council boss is challenging his rivals in the mayoral race to match his pledge.

“I can deliver it as mayor in the same way as I cut council tax year on year, when they said it wasn’t possible,”  Mr Greenhalgh insists.

“You can’t have Londoners continuing to pay through the nose for the most expensive Tube system in the world. A challenge for a future mayor is to give that fare cut but to continue that investment. I believe it can be done.”

Mr Greenhalgh, 47, is running as the candidate of experience. After studying at St Paul’s and Cambridge, he joined the corporate sector, before setting up a medical publishing firm. From 2006 he ran Hammersmith and Fulham council — where he was feted and despised in equal measure — before joining City Hall in 2012 to oversee the Met.

He got off to a bumpy start — “I had just four days to prepare for the job” — but on his watch crime has continued to fall overall. However, there have been rises in areas including violence against women and knife crime.

Last week he was embroiled in the water cannon row, after Home Secretary Theresa May banned Mr Johnson from using three machines bought for £218,000 on Mr Greenhalgh’s watch.

The deputy mayor has also overseen £600 million of cuts in his time in charge of London policing but insists: “I’m not just a cost-cutter.”

He adds: “There are people on very low incomes and they do need support. But those people want to get on  in life.

“I believe in the hand-up, I’ve never believed in the hand-out. You can never create an equal London but the city can be a great engine of opportunity.”

Mr Greenhalgh shrugs off the suggestion Zac Goldsmith, the Tory MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston, will be hard to beat. “He’s the frontrunner. But not all races end with frontrunners at the finishing tape. There’s a long way to go and I’m in it to win it,” he says.

“I feel I’ve done my apprenticeship. It would be a seamless transition to have somebody that has run a town hall and worked at City Hall.”

He admits it will be a “tough job” for the Tories to hold on to the mayoralty. But he believes he can beat any of the Labour line-up, which includes Dame Tessa Jowell and Sadiq Khan.

“Sadiq is much more like Ken [Livingstone] in that machine-like ability,” he says. “Tessa has a huge amount of charisma, I like her an awful lot and think she’s in politics for all the right reasons. But they’re both beatable.

“In 2006 no one believed we could take [Hammersmith and Fulham council] … I have a clear record of beating Labour in their own back yard.”

He is a family man, with three children, but is aware of the publicity that can come with the job. In 2012, he  apologised for allegedly patting a female colleague’s bottom, although no formal complaint was made.

“Any mayor needs to be prepared for public scrutiny, it’s a high-profile public office and my family are all incredibly supportive,” he says.

Mr Greenhalgh, who was 22 stone at his heaviest, meets a personal trainer every day and has already lost more than four stone. “You’ve got to be physically fit to be mayor,” he says. “I’m going into this race knowing I’m the underdog but I hope people will understand I’ve got a lot to offer.”

MEDIA RELEASE GREENHALGH: 5 POINT PLAN TO TACKLE LONDON’S AIR QUALITY

MEDIA RELEASE GREENHALGH: CONSERVATIVE MAYORAL HOPEFUL’S 5 POINT PLAN TO TACKLE LONDON’S AIR QUALITY

CITY A.M. article: Airport expansion

Thames Estuary: Let's start things small (Source: Getty)

Thames Estuary: Let’s start things small (Source: Getty)

City A.M. online article

Airport expansion: Forget Heathrow and Gatwick – only Thames Estuary can give more than a sticking plaster solution to the UK’s airport expansion needs

Last week big business was on the march with 57 senior business leaders signing a letter urging the Prime Minister to give a third runway to Heathrow.

This follows on neatly from the Davies Commission – a £20m report that has taken three years to recommend political suicide.

The challenge for a future mayor of London is to support a long-term solution to airport expansion that can be delivered politically. Mayoral politics is the art of the possible. Expansion of Heathrow is politically undeliverable and a Gatwick second runway only offers a sticking plaster solution.

It is time to campaign for a bold vision that is politically possible.

But we have a conundrum – London needs a hub airport and yet expansion at any of the existing sites can never deliver one on a single site. Currently London effectively has one large airport (Heathrow), one medium airport (Gatwick) and two smaller airports (Stansted and Luton).

Each one has a different role and the reality is that the lucrative fast-growing business traffic which is increasingly crowded out of Heathrow will never beat a path to Gatwick. Nor will it go to Stansted, despite its existing surplus capacity.

This fact alone suggests that expansion at Gatwick or Stansted is not, and can never be, the right answer to delivering more air capacity in the London area. Similarly expansion of Heathrow is politically a non-starter, whatever angle the deliberations of the Davies’ Commission can seek to put on it.

London is arranged linearly along the Thames and as such any additional airport capacity needs to be located on this axis rather than on one of the other compromised spokes out northwards and southwards.

That leaves only the eastern end around the estuary.

However rather than seek to flip all the airport capacity from Heathrow to a new eastern hub, an alternative approach would be to start to lay the groundwork in a rather more modest way.

There can still be a plan for an eventual multi-runway hub airport but initially let’s go about it more modestly with one runway, start to construct the road and rail connections and build up all the other infrastructure.

It is unrealistic to expect central government to fund a four-runway hub airport in one go as Boris Johnson is pushing for. My approach would not result in a ‘big bang’ that could see the end of Heathrow. Heathrow is far too important economically with its thousands of jobs to be closed and under this plan it would continue as now – although its role would inevitably diminish and shift as the eastern airport expanded.

I am heavily influenced by the thinking of Patrick Ground who, as a planning QC, represented the Greater London Council at the terminal five phase of the Stansted Inquiry. Patrick was also the Conservative MP for Feltham & Heston from 1983-1992.

The livelihood of many of his constituents depended on Heathrow. Heathrow should not be closed but must not get any bigger.

Heathrow should start to behave in an environmentally friendly way in the best tradition of airports globally. All night flights should be banned as Davies recommends and there should be a cap on the number of movements.

But we should go further: Heathrow should become better not bigger. We do not want mixed mode solutions but strict maintenance of the Cranford Agreement, which limits take offs over Cranford. This avoids noisy take offs on the northern runway when the wind is blowing from an easterly direction.

As mayor I will push to build up an estuary airport in phases that will boost the huge regeneration potential along the Thames Estuary, so London continues to have a Heathrow in the West and, in time, another hub airport in the East.

City A.M.’s Opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking opinions and views. These are not necessarily shared by City A.M.

View the original article here

BBC: Mayoral contenders

Stephen Greenhalgh: “Buy to leave” investors are pricing Londoners out of the property market – this is how I’d tackle it

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Much of London property market seems to have been reserved for the super rich (Source: Getty)
by Stephen Greenhalgh

Often it is the non doms in London who are given a really bad press for inflating the property market. However I believe that it is the “non res” rather than the non dom that London should really worry about.
The global non resident super rich see London residential property as a holiday home in the greatest and safest city on earth. The non res are the “buy to leave empty” and do not appear to pay their way. Only very recently did they start to pay capital gains tax on their UK property, so for decades the property in London was also a tax free investment.
Much of London property market seems to have been reserved for the super rich but there are ways to tackle this problem and enable Londoners who live and work here to get onto the housing ladder.
I recommend that the chancellor and my friend, the chief secretary to the Treasury Greg Hands, look at introducing taxation of capital gains made by non res corporate developers of UK residential property. They currently do not pay tax on the development gain.
These tax revenues, which would come from all developments, could be recycled into providing help for young Londoners to own their home of more affordable housing for essential city workers – the people that keep the city alive. Why should some developers have a special tax status? We need to have a level playing field.
My concern over these “buy to leave” investors is why I have already committed as part of my “home ownership” blueprint.
Under this plan, only those who have lived or worked in the capital for at least three years would be able to buy new homes built on public land. A similar condition would apply to housing associations and developers receiving Greater London Authority funding.
This would reserve new homes for Londoners, and help those who live and work in the capital to get a foot onto the housing ladder.

City A.M.’s Opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking opinions and views. These are not necessarily shared by City A.M.

Original arcicle

MEDIA RELEASE GREENHALGH: BENEFITS FROM THE APP-BASED TECHNOLOGY PROVIDED THERE IS A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD

MEDIA RELEASE – GREENHALGH: LONDONERS MUST BE ABLE TO BENEFIT FROM NEW APP-BASED TECHNOLOGY PROVIDED THERE IS A LEVEL PLAYING FIELD

MEDIA RELEASE GREENHALGH: Airport Capacity

MEDIA RELEASE GREENHALGH: THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE FOR THE NEXT MAYOR MUST BE TO INCREASE LONDON’S AIRPORT CAPACITY AND TO ENSURE THAT LONDON REMAINS A LIVEABLE CITY

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Heavyweight Tory packs a punch

By Chris Papadopoullos, City A.M. 24th July 2015
5edcd6a5-ea9e-48ec-800d-f34d63008571Candidate Stephen Greenhalgh tells Chris Papadopoullos why he should be Mayor
“You know what, Chris?” he bellows in the middle of a crowded Westminster café, prodding at my arm. “You know what?”
“I’m the only candidate who has spent over a decade in the engine room of London government.”
Conservative Stephen Greenhalgh, deputy mayor for policing and crime, is certainly more bolshie blue than shrinking violet in his campaign to succeed London mayor Boris Johnson.
Tomorrow, he competes with six others for three spots on the Conservative shortlist for its mayoral candidate.
“I’m the only challenger who will start punching above his weight, and I’m already heavy” he says.
He claims to be someone who knows how to govern – “I’ve walked the walk,” he says. It’s hard to be sceptical.
In classic Conservative fashion, he slashed council tax by 20 per cent while he was head of Hammersmith and Fulham council making it the third lowest in London.
He was also successful in cutting crime. Under Greenhalgh, a drop in crime of 25 per cent followed his decision to put more police in the town.
His crime fighting success led to a call from Johnson, who appointed him deputy mayor for policing and crime.
Since then, victim-based crime across London is down 20 per cent and he has helped the Met Police make £600m in savings. At the same time, he ensured more money is spent on front-line policing, with 2,600 extra officers put in neighbourhoods.
Yet he has not been without controversy. Greenhalgh was recently forced to defend his decision to purchase three water cannons after home secretary Theresa May rules out their use. However, some view May’s move as an attempt to embarrass Johnson and stifle any chance of him succeeding David Cameron as Tory leader.
But now Greenhalgh wants to tackle the capital’s wider problems.
Forget expanding Heathrow, he argues, you need a light version of Boris Island – an airport that would be built in the Thames estuary – which he says would be a “long-term solution rather than a sticking plaster”.
Heathrow’s expansion comes at a great environmental cost and would put another million Londoners under noisy flight paths, he says.
Driverless Underground trains and lower fares are also a target, and he says he will not let labour unions get in the way.
“I’ve wound them up before, I know how to fix them”.
He believes strikes can be avoided through smarter management.
“Strikes are avoided by being clear about the end game – the unions are good people”.
But if worse comes to worst he would plough on without union agreement.
Greenhalgh wants to tackle Generation Rent and get more people owning their own homes.
He wants to free up publicly owned land for 50,000 homes for what he calls essential city workers – these include teachers, police officers and nurses.
He also wants to reform the much-hated Section 106 – which requires big house builders to give some proportion of their development to local councils – that can take years to negotiate.
If Greenhalgh is shortlisted tomorrow, he will face a race against two others to be the Conservative candidate which will be decided in September.

Out and about

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What fun to win and will double in value when signed by next Conservative Mayor of London after Boris!

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KS2 Langford pupils getting level 4+ in reading, writing and maths is up 12% points to 73%!

446f5451-9b51-41e2-99e6-a83872de0740

Enjoyable chat with Sol Campbell at Hustings!

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With Omar Hajaj before Iftar and after meeting the youngsters at the West London Islamic cultural centre

I can deliver Tube fare cuts, claims Boris deputy with eyes on top job

Pippa Crerar, City Hall Editor Evening Standard writes

0459269b-4ab1-410b-9d91-1501afc78d09STEPHEN GREENHALGH is nothing if not gutsy.

When the deputy mayor announced he would cut Tube fares by three per cent a year to launch his bid to succeed Boris Johnson at City Hall, he ruffled feathers among his Tory colleagues.

Now, days after outgoing Transport for London chief Sir Peter Hendy explicitly warned that such a move could put services at risk, the former council boss is challenging his rivals in the mayoral race to match his pledge.

“I can deliver it as mayor in the same way as I cut council tax year on year, when they said it wasn’t possible,” Mr Greenhalgh insists.

“You can’t have Londoners continuing to pay through the nose for the most expensive Tube system in the world. A challenge for a future mayor is to give that fare cut but to continue that investment. I believe it can be done.”

Mr Greenhalgh, 47, is running as the candidate of experience. After studying at St Paul’s and Cambridge, he joined the corporate sector, before setting up a medical publishing firm. From 2006 he ran Hammersmith and Fulham council – where he was feted and despised in equal measure – before joining City Hall in 2012 to oversee the Met.

He got off to a bumpy start – “I had just four days to prepare for the job” – but on his watch crime has continued to fall overall. However, there have been rises in areas including violence against women and knife crime.

Last week he was embroiled in the water cannon row, after Home Secretary Theresa May banned Mr Johnson from using three machines bought for £218,000 on Mr Greenhalgh’s watch.

The deputy mayor has also overseen £600 million of cuts in his time in charge of London policing but insists: “I’m not just a cost-cutter”.

He adds: “There are people on very low incomes and they do need support. But those people want to get on in life.

“I believe in the hand-up, I’ve never believed in the hand-out. You can never create an equal London but the city can be a great engine of opportunity.”

Mr Greenhalgh shrugs off the suggestion that Zac Goldsmith, the Tory MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston, will be hard to beat. “He’s the frontrunner. But not all races end with frontrunners at the finishing tape. There’s a long way to go and I’m in to win it,” he says.

“I feel I’ve done my apprenticeship. It would be a seamless transition to have somebody that has run a town hall and worked at City Hall.”

He admits it will be a “tough job” for the Tories to hold on to the mayoralty. But he believes he can beat any of the Labour line-up, which includes Dame Tessa Jowell and Sadiq Khan.

“Sadiq is much more like Ken [Livingstone] in that machine-like ability,” he says. “Tessa has a huge amount of charisma, I like her an awful lot and think she’s in politics for all the right reasons. But they’re both beatable.

“In 2006 no one believed we could take [Hammersmith and Fulham council] … I have a clear record of beating Labour in their own back yard.”

He is a family man, with three children, but is aware of the publicity that can come with the job. In 2012, he apologised for allegedly patting a female colleague’s bottom, although no formal complaint was made.

“Any mayor needs to be prepared for public scrutiny, it’s a high profile public office and my family are all incredibly supportive,” he says.

Mr Greenhalgh, who was 22 stone at his heaviest, meets a personal trainer every day and has already lost more than four stone. “You’ve got to be physically fit to be mayor,” he says. “I’m going into this race knowing I’m underdog but I hope people will understand I’ve got a lot to offer.”

Londoners must be able to benefit from new app-based technology provided there is a level playing field

de0d2599-2a95-4044-8ea2-031a1a935e4fClick edit button to change this text.

Primary school pupil is deemed at risk of Islamist radicalisation

Sophia Sleigh and Kiran Randhawa, London Evening Standard, 23rd July 2015

A pupil at a Hampstead primary school has become one of the youngest children to be referred to a counter-terrorism agency after being deemed at risk of Islamic radicalisation.
Concerns about the child at Fleet Primary School have been escalated to the Government’s Channel project, which was set up in the wake of July 7 bombings in 2005 to identify children likely to be drawn into extremism.
The referral of the child to the programme, run by the Home Office and Association of Chief Police Officers, was revealed by the chairman of governors at the school, Kim Issroff.
At a meeting of Camden council’s children, schools and families scrutiny committee, she said: “The concern is that it is an increasing problem in our community. Unfortunately, there are lots of parents who had a bad experience at school and we are not always able to engage with them. Through community leaders is the way to do it.”
It is believed the behaviour of the child’s parents caused concern among staff which led to the referral to Channel. The initiative is part of the Prevent programme, which identifies those at risk of being drawn into terrorism.
The child’s referral comes as Deputy Mayor Stephen Greenhalgh warned the capital needs to be “extra vigilant” as growing numbers of young Londoners are becoming radicalised online.
Hundreds of children across the UK have been identified as possible future extremists since the Channel project was launched.
Fleet Primary School, near Hampstead Heath, has 230 pupils aged three to 11. Councillor Richard Olszewski, another governor at the school, said it had intervened on other occasions when children were deemed at risk of radicalisation. The concerns were resolved after working with parents.
Mr Greenhalgh, who has previously warned that children under the age of 10 were being “trained to be junior jihadis”, said: “The current threat level in London requires us to be extra vigilant. There are a number of incidences where radicalisation occurs online and parents are unaware of this.”
He said the Mayor’s office has its own board dedicated to preventing radicalisation in schools because “we need oversight over London”.
Fleet Primary School’s website has a page dedicated to “promoting British values” and states that it ensures the Government’s counter-terrorism strategy, Prevent, is regularly reinforced.
It says: “We have a commitment to actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British values, including ‘extremist’ views.”
Camden council said it was unable to comment on the case, adding: “We do not provide information on numbers of local Channel referrals as disclosing this could have an adverse impact on local community relations.”
On Monday, David Cameron unveiled a five-year plan to tackle extremism including giving parents the ability to confiscate their children’s passports and reducing segregation in schools.
Since 2011, Camden has been classed by the Home Office as a “priority area” to tackle extremism through Prevent.
Joseph Watts Political Correspondent, London Evening Standard, 23rd July 2015

Sell off TfL land to fund fare cuts

A SELL-OFF of Transport for London land could net London taxpayers a £20 billion windfall to fund fare cuts and Tube upgrades, a Tory mayoral candidate said today.
Stephen Greenhalgh claims TfL is sitting on hundreds of acres of prime central London development space that could be sold to fund schemes including a blanket three per cent fares cut, which he has promised if elected. TfL has suggested the plan would require £1.9 billion by 2020-21.
But Mr Greenhalgh said: “We could get 20 times that amount from selling land. You would also be able to invest a lot of money into capital projects that TfL want to carry out. TfL needs to stop acting like a developer and concentrate on running its services.”
He believes there are at least 1,000 acres of developable TfL land, worth about £20 million an acre.
A TfL spokeswoman said the organisation has a £16 billion “savings and efficiencies target” for 2020-21 and a plan to maximise revenue from commercial assets, including property, to generate a further £3.4 billion.
She added: “Our modern approach … will give us a long-term sustainable revenue stream now and well into the future, which a one-off sale of all assets would simply not deliver.”

Stephen’s reaction to the election results in London

Stephen GreenhalghStephen Greenhalgh has a proven track record of delivering for Londoners both as a Council Leader and as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime. In 2006, he led the Conservatives to a two-term victory in Hammersmith & Fulham, taking majority control of the Borough for the first time since 1968. Stephen cut council tax five times in six years, with residents’ satisfaction with council services increasing at the same time, and the Conservatives retained the council under his leadership at the 2010 election. He stepped down as Leader when he was appointed Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime (DMPC) by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, in June 2012. Since then he has set the budget plans for the Metropolitan Police and devised a cost-reduction strategy to realise £600 million of savings by 2016. He framed the 20-20-20 Challenge for the Met Police which forms the basis of the Mayor’s strategy outlined in the Police and Crime Plan – to cut key neighbourhood crimes by 20 per cent, to boost confidence by 20 per cent, whilst cutting costs by 20 per cent. Public safety is the foundation for any city’s prosperity and whilst Stephen has been in his current post, victim-based neighbourhood crime in London has already fallen by 20% and public confidence in the police is rising. Stephen launched his bid to become London Mayor at the end of last year with a pledge to make the capital less expensive for working Londoners on low and middle incomes through:

  • Cuts to bus and tube fares with a specific pledge to cut tube fares across the board by 3% every year so that Londoners will, for example, save more than £900 on annual Zone 1-3 Travelcard over four years
  • Prioritising more new and existing housing for essential workers who keep the city alive such as police officers, paramedics, nurses, firefighters and teachers
  • Regeneration of London’s most deprived areas to create jobs and build homes

Greenhalgh unveils London ‘home ownership’ blueprint

Mayoral candidate Stephen Greenhalgh today set out a ‘home ownership’ blueprint for the capital that will ensure thousands of hard-working young Londoners can again afford to get on the property ladder.

Greenhalgh – running to win the Conservative nomination to be Mayor of London from 2016 – said he was determined to give the capital’s residents the chance to buy their own home.

And he promised to build on the achievements of the current Mayor of London, Boris Johnson – who has already built 87,000 affordable homes since 2008 and is currently fast tracking 20,000 additional homes through nine new Housing Zones – by pledging to build 50,000 new affordable homes over four years for essential city workers such as police officers, firefighters, paramedics, nurses and teachers.

Greenhalgh said he had the track record to deliver on his pledges. He pointed to his record as Council Leader of Hammersmith and Fulham between 2006 and 2012 where he delivered more than four times as many “intermediate” homes to buy than his Labour predecessors had over the previous six years. He also created a dedicated Home Buy Unit for first-time buyers and key workers.

Today Stephen Greenhalgh announced that as Mayor of London from 2016:

  • Only those who have lived or worked in the capital for at least three years would be able to buy new homes built on public land. A similar condition would apply to housing associations and developers receiving Greater London Authority funding. This would reserve new homes for Londoners.
  • 50,000 new affordable homes would be built for the city’s key workers – such as teachers, paramedics, police officers, firefighters and nurses, “the brilliant people who keep our city alive”.
  • He would tackle empty homes in London by pushing for a new Empty Homes Corporate Tax to be levied on companies – which account for the vast majority of foreign property investment – whose properties are not occupied for at least half the year. The burden of proving residence would be on the business.
  • He would also push for action to be taken against “land banking” where owners buy brownfield sites, do not develop them and watch their value increase before selling the land. Greenhalgh would push for a new levy on any financial gain made by landowners who fail to redevelop sites.

Stephen Greenhalgh, who discussed his housing plans at a roundtable last week with some of London’s leading housing experts, attacked Labour for their obsession with providing only social rented homes the result of which would mean even more Londoners being priced out of the housing market for longer.

He said: “Boris has done a great job building almost 100,000 new affordable homes across London, often with many boroughs resisting, but we still need more new homes of every kind – that’s why I have already pledged 50,000 new affordable homes for the brilliant people who keep our city alive, the essential workers like teachers, paramedics, police officers, firefighters and nurses.

“The priority from 2016 is also to deliver a home ownership revolution in London. At the moment we risk having an entire generation priced out of the London housing market, stuck on rent and unable to buy – something Labour’s obsession with providing only social rented housing will perpetuate. I will put Londoners at the front of the queue to buy new homes they can afford.”

Stephen Greenhalgh’s policies are backed by a new YouGov poll. It reveals:

  • Voters across the political spectrum want to prioritise getting Londoners on the housing ladder, not simply providing just more social housing, with 42 per cent of Londoners think allowing more people to buy a new home and get on the housing ladder should be the priority for affordable housing in London. Only 21 per cent want to prioritise more council or housing association properties. There was a similar lead across age ranges and social groups. Labour voters also agreed, with 36 per cent wanting affordable homes to buy prioritised over social housing (28 per cent).

Better buses for London

Greenhalgh: I will put passengers’ needs at the heart of a new London bus service

Mayoral candidate Stephen Greenhalgh today said he would revolutionise London’s bus service – to ensure passengers are the top priority.

He said his buses blueprint would not only work in favour of London bus users but also allow for reductions in the level of public subsidy required. Current Mayor, Boris Johnson, has already successfully reduced the annual subsidy from £800m to £400m.

Mr Greenhalgh – who is running to win the Conservative Mayoral nomination – pledged to introduce performance incentives so companies were encouraged to run more quickly and pick up more passengers, and said he would run more buses on the most popular routes.

To ensure buses help passengers – especially workers during rush hour – reach their destinations as quickly as possible, bus companies would be rewarded for running their services more quickly. This contract model – which will bring an end to buses resting at stops to “regulate the service” – is used in other parts of the country’s transport network. This would see Transport for London (TfL) rolling out SCOOT (a road signal system that keeps traffic flowing) more rapidly, and Metropolitan Police traffic officers ensuring disruptions are quickly dealt with and kept to a minimum.

The new “net cost contracts” would also encourage bus companies to pick up more passengers, as they would be entitled to keep all revenue from fares (set by the Mayor of London), less the costs of providing the bus service for that route. It would mean that although less popular routes would still require some of the public subsidy, profitable routes would generate an income to TfL.

Buses are currently contracted to run timetabled services, not incentivised to reduce travel times or have more passengers.

Transport for London will also be required to concentrate more resources on the routes used by most passengers – more buses will run on these, with frequency reduced on under-utilised routes. There will be no reduction in overall bus mileage across the capital. At the moment buses on some routes (such as early-week night buses) often run near-empty, costing money and adding to pollution.

Mr Greenhalgh said he welcomed an idea proposed by Lord Adonis, the former transport minister, for a “ticket transfer”. Currently passengers who use two or more buses to reach their location currently have to buy a fare for each trip. The transfer plan would see a time limit placed on each ticket, which could be used on any bus for that period. Mr Greenhalgh said he would now carry out detailed costing and a feasibility assessment for the plan.

New polling by YouGov out today reveals that Londoners back Mr Greenhalgh’s plans:

  • Many more Londoners supported (48 per cent) than opposed (13 per cent) his pledge that more of the payments made to bus companies are based on performance – a 35-percentage point lead in favour.
  • Many more Londoners supported (45 per cent) than opposed (27 per cent) his pledge to ensure more buses ran at the busier times and places, with fewer running on less popular routes – an 18-percentage point lead in favour.

Mr Greenhalgh said: “My bus revolution will deliver a better bus service at lower cost – with passengers the priority. As Mayor I will ensure that every bus is a jobs express for London’s workers.

“I frequently take buses for short journeys closer to home and people tell me that the slowness of the buses means they often get into trouble because they are too often late for work. Bus companies need to work to passengers’ needs – not bureaucrats’ timetables.

“New contracts will mean companies will be incentivised to ensure their passengers arrive in good time and to pick up more passengers. And I will match bus supply to demand – there will be no loss of service and the cost of running empty buses will be hugely reduced.

“Londoners need an integrated, passenger-orientated public transport network of 24-hour buses and tubes as well as overground rail services in a city that never sleeps. This is critical to millions of Londoners striving to get to work and live their lives.”

The announcement is the latest major transport pledge from Mr Greenhalgh, who has already promised to cut all Tube fares by three per cent every year that he is Mayor by overhauling TfL’s existing structure and finding back-office savings, slashing non-operating costs, reviewing TfL’s balance sheet and all its assets including land holdings, and driving efficiency through introducing new technologies more quickly. The pledge – which over four years would save Londoners £905.21 on an annual Zone 1-3 Travelcard, for example – has already been backed by a number of experts, including Transport for London Board member Brian Cooke.

Mr Greenhalgh has a track record of delivering high-quality services while reducing costs for Londoners.

  • As leader of Hammersmith and Fulham Council, Mr Greenhalgh cut council tax in five years out of six from 2007, bringing it down from one of the highest in the country to the third lowest. He also brought the council’s debt to below £100m for the first time in over 25 years. At the same time, residents’ satisfaction with services rose and Mr Greenhalgh was re-elected in 2010 with a large majority.
  • And during his time as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, the Metropolitan Police has made savings of £240m, while spending more on front-line policing which has led to a 19% fall in victim-based crime while public confidence in the police has risen.

Improving the bus service is one of Mr Greenhalgh’s ’15 Challenges for a Future Mayor’ – the key issues he has promised to address should he be elected in 2016. Among the other challenges he will tackle are providing affordable housing, protecting neighbourhood policing numbers, and ensuring every London child has a good school place.

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,011 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 27th February – 2nd March 2015. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all London adults (aged 18+).

London Mayoral Candidate Stephen Greenhalgh meets London’s Air Ambulance Chief Executive

Greenhalgh: Let medically trained firefighters back up paramedics – and save lives

London Mayoral candidate Stephen Greenhalgh today called for medically trained firefighters to be allowed to respond to serious medical emergencies – and help save Londoners’ lives.

Mr Greenhalgh – the former leader of Hammersmith and Fulham Council – is running to win the Conservative Mayoral nomination.

He challenged the London Fire Brigade Union to change its rules so firefighters, if suitably trained, are permitted to assist paramedics in the case of serious emergencies (eg cardiac arrests) and at times of high demand, such as New Year’s Eve, or industrial action.

Many FBU branches in other parts of the country agree locally to help. But in London, leaders of the Fire Brigade Union want a national agreement to be struck before allowing this.

His call for medically trained firefighters to be allowed to back up paramedics comes as a new poll by YouGov reveals the majority of Londoners back him on his proposal.

Nearly six in 10 Londoners (58 per cent) think medically trained firefighters should be able to respond, while only three in 10 (30 per cent) oppose and just over one in 10 (12 per cent) were unsure.

The results are even more stark when those intending to vote Conservative (69 per cent support) or Liberal Democrat (72 per cent support) in May’s General Election are taken into account.

Mr Greenhalgh, currently London’s Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, said: “I challenge the Fire Brigade Union in London to provide medical back-up to the London Ambulance Service in serious emergencies or when demand is high, like New Year’s Eve or industrial action.

“Unlike other parts of the country where blue light services work more closely together, union rules in London stop the fire brigade from using medically trained firefighters to assist paramedics, even though demand on the brigade is falling and ambulance staff are under huge pressure and struggling to cope.”

The call is part of Mr Greenhalgh’s proposal to overhaul emergency services in the capital so they are an integrated unit with faster 999 response times – and save money.

He said he would also create a new “super control room” covering the three emergency services – police, fire and ambulance – where all 999 calls would be routed.

At the moment the London Ambulance Service runs two control rooms, with the police and Fire Brigade running one each. All these do a similar job with comparable technology. By joining these up into one “super-control room” – as in other big cities and other parts of the country – the 999 response service would be improved while money could be saved and re-invested in the frontline.

Figures show that while demands on the police and fire service are falling, pressure on the ambulance service is rising:

  • The police still receive the most 999 calls in London (1.8 million calls in 2013/14) but demands on it are falling and its response times have improved since 2011.
  • The fire service received 170,000 calls in 2013/14. Demands on it are also falling and its response times have remained within target overall.
  • The ambulance service received 1.7 million calls in 2013/14 – and its response times are well below the national target of 75 per cent, with just 64 per cent of top priority calls responded to within eight minutes in October 2014.

Mr Greenhalgh said: “Our police officers, firefighters and paramedics do a wonderful job keeping us safe – but they need help.

“The challenge for a future Mayor is to find ways to improve the speed and quality of the emergency response of all blue light services across London – while saving money that can go back into frontline services.

“As demand on our emergency services grow, it is imperative that a future Mayor re-designs services so that 999 continues to be a service that all Londoners can rely on.

“As Mayor, I will get the fire, police and ambulance services working more closely together – this will ensure a faster and more integrated emergency service response that will hugely benefit Londoners.”

Today’s call forms part of a series of five public safety challenges for a future mayor that Stephen Greenhalgh is outlining during his selection campaign.

Reaction to Mayoral Candidate Stephen Greenhalgh’s pledge to cut tube fares by 3% a year

15 challenges for a future Mayor of London

Read Stephen Greenhalgh’s 15 challenges for a future Mayor of London.

Stephen Greenhalgh: 15 Challenges for a Future Mayor of London

Greenhalgh Tube fares pledge: Londoners will save more than £900 on annual Zone 1-3 Travelcard over four years

3 per cent tube fare cuts guaranteed

3 per cent tube fare cuts guaranteed

London Mayoral candidate Stephen Greenhalgh today announced that Tube passengers will save hundreds of pounds a year under his pledge to cut Tube fares and make the Underground affordable.

With more than four million Tube trips every single day, Mr Greenhalgh vowed to cut Tube fares across the board by three per cent every year that he is Mayor, if elected, by overhauling Transport for London’s back-office functions, slashing non-operating costs and introducing cost-effective technologies more quickly.

A poll by YouGov has found that cutting fares is Londoners’ top demand of the next Mayor.
The first Tube cut would take effect from January 2017 and will mean that Londoners will save hundreds of pounds over the course of the four-year term, which starts in 2016.

Setting Mr Greenhalgh’s annual 3% decrease against an assumed annual Tube fare hike of forecast RPI +1%, Londoners would make the following savings four years later (based on increases / decreases on today’s prices):

  • £1.15 on a cash Zone 1 single fare – £4.25 against forecast £5.40 (and 55p cheaper than today’s price).
  • £29.62 on a monthly Zone 1-2 Travelcard – £109.16 against forecast £138.78 (and £14.14 cheaper than today’s price).
  • £362.25 on an annual Zone 1-3 Travelcard – £1,335.02 against forecast £1,697.27 (and £172.98 cheaper than today’s price).

And over the course of four years (with the new fares again compared to assumed annual Tube fare increases at RPI +1%), Londoners would save a total of:

  • £770.75 on an annual Zone 1 Travelcard.
  • £905.21 on an annual Zone 1-3 Travelcard.
  • £1,407.03 on an annual Zone 1-6 Travelcard.

Current London Underground fare prices compare poorly to the cost of travelling on subway systems in other major world cities:

  • £2.30 in London (Oyster single fare Zone 1 to 2).
  • Approximately £1.80 in New York ($2.75 cash single across the whole network).
  • Approximately £1.34 in Paris (E1.80 cash single across the whole network).
  • Approximately £0.94 in Tokyo (Y170 cash single).

Mr Greenhalgh said: “Over the last few years the Mayor took tough decisions for the much-needed investment in London’s public transport. This has created extra capacity and improved services.

“However, we must now bring Tube prices down, especially for those who keep the city running – the nurses, teachers and paramedics. Fares have reached the point where they are unaffordable for many working people.

“People struggle to earn in the first hour of their shift what they have just paid to get to work. Continuing with these annual fare hikes will hamper London’s economic growth for years to come unless tackled.

“London needs more transport investment but we can’t keep expecting passengers to shoulder the burden – more should come from businesses and developers who directly benefit when new tube lines are opened.

“Ordinary working Londoners should not have to pay more every year in fares as they strive to take advantage of the jobs and growth London is creating.

“People don’t believe that this can be done – but I have a track record of delivering on my pledges of reducing costs for hard-working Londoners while maintaining high-quality public services. The savings we can make from Transport for London will be ploughed back into keeping fares falling.”

As leader of Hammersmith and Fulham Council, Mr Greenhalgh cut council tax in five years out of six from 2007, bringing it down from one of the highest in the country to the third lowest. He also brought the council’s debt to below £100m for the first time in over 25 years. At the same time, residents’ satisfaction with services rose and Mr Greenhalgh was re-elected in 2010 with a large majority.

And during his time as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, the Metropolitan Police has made savings of £240m, while spending more on front-line policing which has led to a 19% fall in victim-based crime while public confidence in the police has risen.

A three per cent fare cut is equal to around £90m each year, the same as two per cent of overall Transport for London (TfL) revenues. Mr Greenhalgh said the money would be found by identifying a range of savings, including:

  • Overhauling TfL existing structure and finding back-office savings.
  • Slashing non-operating costs by 25% in three years.
  • Reviewing TfL’s balance sheet and all its assets including land holdings.
  • Driving efficiency through introducing new technologies more quickly.

Richard Tracey AM, the GLA Conservative transport lead since 2008, said: “An incoming Mayor must deliver and be able to manage the whole Transport for London ’empire’ cost effectively and with new directions. Stephen Greenhalgh has fully demonstrated his innovative powers and skill in making costs savings as Deputy Mayor and as a former London borough leader.”

Cutting Tube fares is one of Mr Greenhalgh’s ’15 Challenges for a Future Mayor’ – the key issues he has promised to address should he be elected in 2016.

Among the other challenges he will tackle are providing affordable housing, protecting neighbourhood policing numbers, and ensuring every London child has a good school place.

“The people who keep our city alive can no longer afford to live here. I have the track record and expertise to deliver for them.”

teamGreenhalgh

teamGreenhalgh

Stephen Greenhalgh launches bid to become London Mayor, with pledge to make the capital less expensive for working Londoners on low and middle incomes through…

  • Cuts to bus and tube fares
  • Prioritising more new and existing housing for essential city workers
  • Regeneration of London’s most deprived areas to create jobs and homes

Stephen Greenhalgh – Boris Johnson’s Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime – has confirmed that he will be campaigning to secure the Conservative Party’s nomination to become the next Mayor of London.

Stephen – whose mother had been a refugee who was expelled from Czechoslovakia and whose father was the first in his family to go to university – has nearly 20 years’ experience in London Government, where he has gained a reputation for delivering better public services that cost people less.

In 2006, Stephen led the Conservatives to a two-term victory in Hammersmith & Fulham, taking majority control of the Borough for the first time since 1968. As Leader of the Council, he reduced Council Tax by over 20% in eight years, with residents’ satisfaction with Council Services increasing. Public safety is the foundation for any city’s prosperity and whilst Stephen Greenhalgh has been in his current post, victim-based crimes in London have fallen by 19% and the Met Police has managed to save £240 million so far whilst investing more in frontline policing.

Speaking today Stephen Greenhalgh said: “Increasingly, London is home to either the very rich or the poor. But what about everyone else? Many Londoners on middle incomes have to flee the city to find homes they can afford and then travel back long distances to work on crowded commuter trains. It’s not good enough.

“The majority of our police officers live outside London; London’s NHS struggles to recruit and retain nurses, doctors and paramedics; and our young professionals can’t get a foot on the property ladder.”

“The people who keep our city alive can no longer afford to live here. I am determined to change that and if elected as Mayor of London I will:

  • Cut bus and tube fares
  • Prioritise more new and existing housing for essential city workers
  • Regenerate some of London’s most deprived areas to create jobs and homes

“I have the track record and expertise to deliver for them. For me this would be the best job in the world.”

Mayor of London Boris Johnson, said: “We need the strongest possible field and I am very pleased that Stephen Greenhalgh has decided to contest the nomination after an outstanding career in London government and in his current role as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime.”

Sonia Brown MBE, Founder of National Black Women’s Network (NBWN) added: “Stephen Greenhalgh has shown a tireless commitment to the diversity and inclusion agenda. He has been an avid and dedicated supporter of the work of the National Black Women’s Network around women in business and their contribution to the success of London’s economy. He has worked tirelessly around diversity and the talent pipeline which has been demonstrated by his ongoing work to increase representation of BAME officers in the Met Police.

“Stephen’s impressive track record as an entrepreneur and public servant speaks for itself and I wholeheartedly support his candidacy. I believe he will make an excellent Mayor upon Boris’s departure.”

Former TfL Board Member Steve Norris said: “Stephen would bring energy, enthusiasm and commitment as London’s Mayor. His bid to become the Conservative party candidate in 2016 should be taken extremely seriously and I applaud his pledge to bring tube and bus fares down. This is a real issue for Londoners.”

Founder and Governor of The Fulham Boys School – Sophia Wade said: “Stephen was instrumental in helping us to open The Fulham Boys School, a new Church of England free school for boys in West London. In fact, without him, I doubt we would have been able to open. He combines a real passion for London with the practical ability to solve problems and get things done.”

Rt Hon Greg Hands, MP for Chelsea and Fulham: “I have worked closely with Stephen Greenhalgh in the Conservatives for 16 years. His record as Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council was one of the best in the UK.

He was a council tax cutter and used his business skills to deliver better public services at the lowest reasonable cost. He would be a formidable Mayor candidate, and an excellent Mayor of London, who will do us all proud.”

Stephen Greenhalgh’s pledge on Transport – in conversation with Steve Norris