23 April 2011
Brighton & Hove's Royal Pavilion
The Green Party's election campaign in Brighton and Hove isn't shy about its aims: to form the UK's first Green-led council.
Brighton and Hove Greens are running a full slate across the city in the wake of last year's successful campaign to elect the UK's first Green MP - Party leader Caroline Lucas in the Brighton Pavilion constituency.
Bill Randall, Green council convenor, said: "We have 13 councillors - the same number as Labour.
"Our hard work and Caroline Lucas' impact have given us the credibility to win more council seats, and maybe even to lead the city council after 5th May."
"People take politics seriously here and know that the Green Party is principled and committed to serving the interests of all rather than the privileged few."
"But it won't be easy. The Government is cutting £84 million from the council's budget - an average of £700 from every household in the city. People understand these cuts are made at source by the Coalition, and whoever runs the council will have to cut their coat from the cloth they are given.
"That's why our manifesto sets out not only our aspirations for Brighton and Hove, but also our commitment to consult local residents, unions, the business community and voluntary groups about taking clear and wise decisions to make the most of every public penny.
"We want to protect every service we can from the crippling cuts being forced on our community by the Coalition."
The Greens' commitment to ‘make the most of every public penny' also sees them promising an ‘open book' approach to council budgeting - by combining budgets with local organisations, and making budgeting figures available.
Local groups and residents will be offered unprecedented participation in allocating neighbourhood budgets.
Goldsmid Green councillor Alex Phillips adds: "Our manifesto is a template for a more open and democratic city offering residents greater power to make decisions for their neighbourhoods and influence the way budgets are shaped and money is spent.
"This marks the Greens out from other parties who pay lip service to residents' views.
"In these difficult times Green councillors will do their very best for the city. We urge Brighton and Hove residents to turn out, take positive action, and vote Green on 5th May."