Protecting Sheffield’s trees is a key pledge in the Liberal Democrats’ local election manifesto.
The Building a Better Sheffield Together manifesto says “trust, truth and transparency” needs to be at the heart of everything.
Lib Dem Leader Shaffaq Mohammed said: “This year’s elections on May 3 are set to take place in the backdrop of huge controversy engulfing the council around how it manages its major projects and contracts.
“I will rebuild trust by opening up the council to residents. At the moment, we have a council that does things to communities rather than work alongside them. We need to restructure how decisions are taken and we have a plan to do that.
“Truth will be at the core of a Liberal Democrat council. We would open up contracts to the public and make services actually serve the people they’re meant to.
“We will be transparent by streaming council meetings live so you know councillors are working for you. We will also build an app to let residents access council information whenever they want.”
Coun Mohammed says the council is the “only credible alternative” to Labour in Sheffield. He said: “The Conservatives haven’t won an election here in over 10 years and the Greens have never had more than four councillors,”
Key themes within the Lib Dem manifesto are an Open Sheffield which involves communities in local decision making.
Coun Mohammed said: “There is particular emphasis in encouraging local residents and tree campaigners in reviewing the implementation of the controversial Streets Ahead contract with a view to explore ways to maintain more of the city’s much loved street trees.
“The Lib Dems will work to maintain war memorial trees planted across the city to mark the sacrifices made by service personnel in their military duty.”
A Keep Sheffield Green fund would be an additional pot of money to improve the local environment by retaining trees, improving cycle routes and recycling.
There’s a pledge to support businesses to increase prosperity and bring jobs to the city. And the city’s most vulnerable residents would be supported with quality housing to buy or rent, giving residents access to open space, cleaner air and safer roads.
Key policy points include:
Empower communities to make decisions over their local public transport
Increase the budget for small business support by 5-10%
Free evening and Sunday city centre parking
Extend the recycling of plastics
Increase the number of green bin collections in the autumn
Increase support for community libraries