Headlines: May 9th, 2001

With the election campaign now firmly underway, Publicnet will supply information on where parties stand on issues of modern government, while continuing to concentrate on reporting new developments in public service.The Conservatives were away ahead of the official announcement with their manifesto for local government – which will also see elections on June 7.

The party is the largest party of local government in county and district councils and will be fighting on a platform of efficiency. They point to rising council tax bills among labour-controlled authorities, and statistics from the Audit Commission showing conservative councils have cleaner streets, more reliable street lighting, pay their bills more quickly, and achieve better exam results in local schools.

The manifesto promises to deliver ‘free schools’ that put parents and teachers in charge, to renovate rundown council housing, protection from unwanted development for green spaces and Green Belt from unwanted development, doorstep recycling for all households, new resources to remove litter, graffiti and abandoned cars.