Doncaster mayoral election candidates tell you why you should vote for them

The first ballot boxes are emptied in Doncaster and the count begins. In one of the closest general elections of recent times hundreds of thousands of votes are counted in the Labour leader, Ed Miliband's constituency, Doncaster. Party leaders Miliband and Cameron are hoping to win an overall majority but It's expected to be the closest general election in decades.

Tom Maddick / Rossparry.co.uk
The first ballot boxes are emptied in Doncaster and the count begins. In one of the closest general elections of recent times hundreds of thousands of votes are counted in the Labour leader, Ed Miliband's constituency, Doncaster. Party leaders Miliband and Cameron are hoping to win an overall majority but It's expected to be the closest general election in decades. Tom Maddick / Rossparry.co.uk
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Have your say

Doncaster goes to the polls next month to elect the mayor who will run the borough.

It will be the fifth time voters have elected a mayor, in a system that replaced the previous council leader system in 2002. This year there will be six candidates fighting for your vote - and today we lift the lid on their plans.

George Jabbour - Conservative

“I would like to use my skills, business background and experiences to serve the people of our town, create more jobs, increase investment in Doncaster and explore the opportunities that Brexit offers.

With my civil engineering and investment background, I am equipped with the skills and expertise needed to make the infrastructure, planning and investment decisions that the Mayor of Doncaster has to consider.

I am passionate about science and innovation. I will rely on my experience in information technology and in school governance to drive an ambitious agenda and to inspire young people.

Having set up a successful small business and having worked with investors from all over the world, I understand what businesses require to thrive and grow and what it takes to be an effective ambassador for our enterprises.

Over the past seven years, the Conservative Party has competently run the UK Government, successfully created millions of jobs and introduced the living wage. Unfortunately for us in Doncaster, we have been left behind as we have had years of unreliable ineffective Labour Council. However, this election provides an opportunity to break away from the past. It is only by voting Conservative that you can make a difference.”

Ros Jones - Labour

“When I became Mayor I inherited a failing council in Government special measures.

With my Labour team we’ve turned things around. We led the Council out of special measures early and put Doncaster on the right track.

I only take half the Mayor’s salary, I don’t claim expenses and I’ve delivered on my promises.

We’ve created over 1,100 new apprenticeships and my ‘buy local’ policy’s given a £108m boost to Doncaster businesses.

We won the National High Speed Rail College, being delivered on schedule and on budget.

Employment’s at an 11 year high. Regeneration and infrastructure schemes are creating thousands of jobs.

We’ve built hundreds of new council houses, bungalows and extra care apartments for older people.

Fines for litter, dog-fouling and fly-tipping have trebled.

Waste-cutting projects like our LED streetlights enable us to protect Doncaster’s most vulnerable from Conservative Government cuts.

Our long-term plan’s working, but there’s more to do.

If re-elected, I’ll deliver more high-skilled jobs, more new homes, better support for the elderly and for our veterans. We’ll regenerate our town centres too, using funding I secured through Sheffield City Region.

I’ll put Doncaster people first. Be part of our long-term plan - vote Labour on May 4.”

Steve Williams - Trade Unionist & Socialist Coalition

“I was born, bred and still live in Conisbrough. I’ve been an NHS mental health nurse for 27 years.

30 years ago, I stood on miners’ picket lines fighting Thatcher’s attack on our communities. Now I am a Unison shop steward and recently marched with 250,000 others to Save Our NHS.

If elected as mayor, I would stand up for local people and propose a budget based on the needs of Doncaster, not the demands of the Tory government.

Ordinary people need an alternative to the austerity agenda of the political establishment and to the racist far-right who try to scapegoat immigrants rather than the greedy capitalists and bankers who caused the economic crisis.

My policies if elected:

# Stop the council cuts – use reserves and borrowing powers

# Defend our NHS – oppose STP cuts and privatisation

# Introduce £10/hour minimum wage – Scrap zero hour contracts

# Keep guards on trains – Safety before profit

#Build council houses to end the housing crisis and homelessness

# Re-route HS2 and stop fracking –invest in public transport and green energy

# Women’s lives matter – restore/sustain funding for Women’s Aid

# Vote against cuts, save our NHS

#Elect socialist Steve on a worker’s wage.”

Brian Whitmore - UKIP

“I live in Mexborough.

We need a change in Doncaster and a council that will listen to you.

Work with south Yorkshire police for better policing.

Work with all our townships and villages as they are in decline, and not to keep putting money into the town centre.

Listen to our shop keepers and market traders.

Introduce cheaper car parking and more spaces to attract shoppers.

The streets need clearing of vagrants and people begging, drinking and spitting so people and visitors can shop and not feel intimidated.

Care in the community for the elderly, disabled, sick and children this is a must.

Support our amazing veterans in jobs and housing.

Work to relive traffic congestion.

Better waste control to stop fly tipping.

To continue to support the people of Mexborough, Denaby, Harlington, Barnborugh against HS2.

Vast amounts of money have been wasted £20m in five years on consultants. This needs to stop.

Doncaster jobs for Doncaster people. We must think of OUR future and the future of our children and grandchildren.

There are difficult times ahead but if we can do some straight talking we can avoid further cuts.”

Chris Whitwood - Yorkshire Party

“I am a trained primary school teacher and standing for election because I believe Doncaster deserves better. Our town has been neglected for far too long. My five point plan will reverse this neglect:

I will work to bring new high-quality jobs to Doncaster by offering support to local businesses and investment in world-class infrastructure.

I will introduce new planning guidelines and a programme of Compulsory Purchase Orders to ensure developers protect our heritage, so our historic buildings are no longer allowed to crumble.

Over the past 30 years, the number of social houses in Doncaster has been cut by two thirds. Increasing access to social housing is essential to tackling homelessness in Doncaster - a priority for me as Mayor.

Our towns and villages are being neglected. I will hold referendums to give residents the opportunity to establish town or parish councils and take control of their own future.

Finally, to succeed we must compete with neighbouring cities. As Mayor, I will apply to make Doncaster a city - celebrating Doncaster’s successes and highlighting our potential.

If you think Doncaster deserves better, vote for someone who will end our town’s neglect. Vote for Chris Whitwood and the Yorkshire​ Party.”

Eddie Todd - Independent

“I’m a professional business development man,I have worked down a pit and in retail sales.

If I become Mayor I will be favoured by all parties not just one.

I am on first name terms with council officers and councillors.

Market traders and shop owners will be happy that a real worker is Mayor. Doncaster International Airport will be developed and thousands of jobs will be created.

Break away from the grip of Sheffield and The West of England.

Then we can start spending on the people of Doncaster.

Total War on Drugs and antisocial behaviour.

Dustbins emptied weekly, Potholes sorted, a few road crossings at Rossington, Reduce rates for market traders, make available places for the homeless, clean up and develop Moorends, bring Mexborough and Doncaster back to life,

Help the NHS and Health workers, Introduce walk in clinics.

Most of you will have seen or talked to me. Trust me, I remember everything you say and do.

Please when you vote for me put two crosses on first and second choice. Eddie Todd, the man not the Party.”