21 April 2012

2 weeks & counting

May 3rd is just around the corner and things are moving fast. Boris had another jam- packed week of activities whist he continues his tour of all 32 London boroughs. Help spread the word about Boris Johnson's 9 point plan for a Greater London - sign up as a volunteer today: www.backboris2012.com/volunteer

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Categories: Campaign Updates, Get Involved, London | Tags: 9 point plan, Council tax, Ken vs ken, Manifesto, Mumsnet

14 April 2012

Less than 3 weeks!

There are just 19 days until polling day and we’re making every minute count. Take a look below at what we’ve been up to this week, and get involved by signing up to volunteer: www.backboris2012.com/volunteer Just an hour or two of your time will make a huge difference.

Official campaign launch and Party Election Broadcast

On Tuesday Boris marked the official launch of his re-election campaign with a speech to supporters in Richmond.

Speaking to an enthusiastic crowd of 250, Boris framed the choice we face at this election - we can either go forwards with a sensible, moderate and cost-effective government that delivers on its promises or lurch back to the high-taxing, divisive approach of Ken Livingstone. Boris’s programme of modernisation, investment and automation was met with huge applause and support for his re-election bid.

Hot on the heels of the launch, Boris’s party election broadcast aired Tuesday evening.

In the broadcast, Boris offered a strong case for why Londoners should support him on 3 May. His 9 point plan to secure a greater London means 200,000 new jobs, £221 million invested in local high streets and businesses and £3.5 billion cut in waste over the next four years. Watch the broadcast to hear more.

Mayoral debates

It was another big week for debates and hustings. Boris participated in the Evening Standard debate Wednesday night and drove home the point that this election is about trust.  He highlighted the progress we have made over the last four years of his mayoralty and made the case for his 9 point plan for a Greater London.

Boris also participated in both the disability and Black Britain Decides hustings on Thursday, during which he continued to highlight his strong record as Mayor.

Join us on the campaign trail!

In addition to the events and debates above, Boris visited Upminster, Hillingdon, Ealing and Kensington and Chelsea to meet local residents. Next time he goes out on the Battle Bus you could be there too. Have a look at the events page to see where you might be able to join Boris on the campaign trail.

Can't Afford Ken

A new report released by the BackBoris team showed that Ken Livingstone has made £2.7 billion worth of unfunded promises whilst campaigning.

Ken would have to increase the mayor’s share of council tax by £348 for a Band D household over four years and increase the congestion charge by 42.1% or introduce a Heathrow Congestion Charge zone in order to deliver the 24 promises he has made. Take a look at the report, titled “Can’t Afford Ken” to learn more.

Categories: Campaign Updates, Get Involved, London | Tags: 9 point plan, Better off with boris, Manifesto, Volunteer

04 April 2012

Fact Check: Ken Livingstone's Crime Manifesto

Ken Livingstone launched his crime manifesto today, but yet again he is making false claims and empty promises.

And despite his claim not to be engaging in negative campaigning, his manifesto mentions Boris Johnson 17 times in a 19-page document.

Ken Livingstone’s latest false claims on crime:

  • Police numbers. Despite Ken Livingstone claims about cuts, official Met data shows there will be 1,000 more police officers on the beat than Boris Johnson inherited. According to the Met, there are 209 new officers coming on board in April, bringing the total officer numbers to 32,468 – well over a thousand above the 31,398 Boris inherited.
  • Safer Neighbourhood Teams. Ken Livingstone claims that Boris has cut the number of officers in Safer Neighbourhood Teams (Ken Livingstone campaign, Press Release, 4 April 2012). However, the Metropolitan Police have confirmed that there has not been a reduction in the number of PCs and PCSOs within Safer Neighbourhood Teams (MPS Website, ‘Safer Neighbourhoods’, link).
  • Crime rates. Crime is coming down under Boris:
    • Total crime has been cut by 10.8 per cent (MOPC, Monthly Report: Police and Crime Committee, 8 March 2012). Comparing 45 months of Ken Livingstone (Aug 04 – Apr 08) with 45 months of Boris Johnson (May 08 – Jan 12).
    • Robberies are down 16.3 per cent (ibid.).
    • Murders are down by 25.9 per cent (ibid.).
    • Youth violence is down by 13.8 per cent since 2008 (MOPC Statistics).
    • Bus crime is down by 32.9 per cent (MOPC, Monthly Report: Police and Crime Committee, 8 March 2012, 45 month comparison).
    • Violence on buses is down by 21 per cent (TfL, Crime and Anti Social Behaviour Statistical Bulletin, Q2 11/12, Table 2.1, link).
    • Tube crime is down by 20 per cent (TfL, Press Release, 21 February 2011, link).
  • Knife crime.  Ken Livingstone claims that knife crime has risen every year for the past three years (Ken Livingstone, Crime Manifesto, link). In fact, across London knife crime fell by 1.2 per cent in 2009/10 (MPS, Annual Report 2008/09, p. 23, link; MPS Website, link).


Ken Livingstone’s previous false claims on crime:

Ken Livingstone’s claim:  Ken Livingstone claimed that crime has ‘sort of flatlined’ under Boris Johnson (BBC TV, London News, 4 January 2012, link).

The truth:  Using a direct comparison with Ken Livingstone’s period in office, crime has fallen by 10.8 per cent under Boris Johnson (MOPC, Monthly Report: Police and Crime Committee, 8 March 2012, link. Comparing 45 months of Ken Livingstone (August 2004 – April 2008) with 45 months of Boris Johnson (May 2008 – January 2012)..  From August 2004 to April 2008 there were 3,486,028 offences reported in London.  Between May 2008 and January 2012 there were 3,110,245 offences reported – a fall of 10.8 per cent).


Ken Livingstone claim: In the last year there has been an 8 per cent increase in murders (Ken Livingstone, BBC London, 26 March 2012). 

The truth:  Taking a rolling 12 month period, murder is down by 24.1 per cent in the 12 months to February 2012 when compared to the 12 months previously (Metropolitan Police Website, ‘Latest Crime Figures for London’, link; Metropolitan Police Website, ‘Crime Mapping: Data Tables’, link).


Ken Livingstone is making promises on police he knows he cannot keep

Safer Neighbourhood Teams – every team or just some?

  • Ken Livingstone won’t say whether these will be PCs or PCSOs or whether he will boost every Safer Neighbourhood Team. He just says ‘more’ SNTs will be increased to 9 officers (Ken Livingstone, Crime Manifesto, p.7). 
  • By contrast Boris has said how he will to boost every Safer Neighbourhood Team with 2,000 more police, including up to 3 more police officers per team. If re-elected, Boris Johnson will work with the Commissioner to deliver a massive boost to Safer Neighbourhood Teams, with an additional 2,000 police, including adding up to three police officers, to every team. Each team will also get three Special Constables to further boost police presence in our neighbourhoods (Boris Johnson, Crime Manifesto, 2 April 2012).


1,700 more police officers – where’s the money coming from?

Ken Livingstone fails to explain how he will fund the extra officers. He says he will:

  • Make TfL pay the full cost of the Safer Transport Command – but they already do. ‘Ensure that Transport for London pays the full cost of the Safer Transport Command (£80 million over the Mayoral term)’ (ibid.). But The Safer Transport Command is already fully funded by TfL (MPA, Finance and Resources Committee: Report 9, 17 June 2010, link).
  • Make efficiencies at Scotland Yard, such as cutting first class travel – but Ken Livingstone charged City Hall £66,000 in expenses when he was mayor. ‘Work with the Commissioner to ensure that all possible efficiencies are found at Scotland Yard, including non- essential spending on such things as chauffeur driven cars and first-class travel’ (Ken Livingstone campaign, Press Release, 4 April 2012). Ken Livingstone charged City Hall £66,000 in expenses when he was mayor, including £6,404 on 1st class flights to Florida (Mail on Sunday, 1 April 2012).


Ken Livingstone’s record on crime 

  • Under Ken Livingstone violent crime increased. Violent crime in London went up 11.2 per cent between 2000/01 and 2007/08 (MPS, Crime Figures 2000-2008, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone drug crime more than doubled. Drug crime in London increased by 201.6 per cent between 2000/01 and 2007/08 (MPS, Crime Figures 2000-2008, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone actual bodily harm almost doubled. Cases of ABH in London increased by 30,641 between 2000/01 and 2007/08, a rise of 84 per cent (MPS, Crime Figures 2000-2008, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone harassment almost doubled. Cases of Harassment in London increased by 20,909 between 2000/01 and 2007/08, a rise of 88.9 per cent (MPS, Crime Figures 2000-2008, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone Tube crime increased. Between 2001/02 and 2007/08 public disorder offences increase by 521 per cent, violent crime was up by 56 per cent and drug crime was up by 128 per cent (British Transport Police, Statistical Bulletin 2002/03 – 2007/08, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone bus crime increased. The London Assembly Transport Committee found at the beginning of 2008 that overall crime on buses had increased by over 17 per cent between 2004/05 and 2005/06 (London Assembly Transport Committee, Crime and Disorder on London’s Buses, January 2008, p.8, link).
  • Under Ken Livingstone violence on buses increased by 9%. At the start of his second term in 04/05 violence against the person stood at 7,712 offences (Transport for London, Crime and anti social behaviour statistics bulletin Q1 07/08, Table 2.1, link). By the end of his second term in 07/08 violence against the person stood at 8,400 offences; a rise of 9% (Ibid. Q1 08/09, Table 2.1, link).

Categories: Campaign Updates, crime | Tags: Crime, Ken livingstone, Manifesto

04 April 2012

Growing the London Economy

By Boris Johnson"Growing the London Economy" - Boris Johnson's Economy Manifesto

Today I launched my economy manifesto and I wanted you to be one of the first to read it.

We are going through tough economic times, and Londoners are understandably concerned about their jobs and the cost of living. That is why my priorities over the last four years have been cutting waste and bureaucracy at City Hall and ensuring your tax money is put where Londoners want to see it spent.

Despite the impact of the economic downturn, London has remained resilient. The employment rate has grown faster in London than anywhere else in the country. The capital continues to be the economic engine room of the nation, with Londoners generating around 22% of the UK’s economy (measured by gross value added).  This has been driven not only by the large multinationals located here and our financial services, but also by London’s growing creative and digital industries, its small and medium enterprises, and its sole traders.

The millions of people who work in business here have all, in one way or another, contributed to London’s phenomenal success and will contribute to the sustained recovery of the UK economy as a whole.

My predecessor had no economic growth plan for London. Millions of pounds were wasted by his London Development Agency because the LDA lacked credible systems to create economic growth on a cost-effective basis. Instead, he spent more time on flights to Havana and Venezuela than on securing the investment London needs, and more time sniping at and undermining the industries that provide hundreds of thousands of jobs for Londoners than supporting them.

I have changed that. I have relentlessly stood up for the capital, cut unnecessary waste to reinvest in economic growth and secured record funding from No 10. And will continue to do so.

Above all, I will secure a fair deal for London from the Government. It is time to review the funding arrangements for London, to ensure the capital gets back what it deserves. I will therefore set up an independent commission to examine whether it is time to introduce a Barnett style formula for London.

I will:

  • Continue to move London forward, with positive leadership and fresh ideas to bolster London’s premier position as a global city.
  • Help grow Greater London’s economy, protect existing jobs, create new ones, and boost skills and training
  • Safeguard hard-won investment in our transport network, and cut council tax.
  • Establish the London Enterprise Panel across Greater London, and stimulate growth through investment in the Enterprise Zone in the Royal Docks and relief for business rates.
  • Invest £221 million to transform high streets and support small businesses.
  • Launch a new London Growth Fund with the £70 million I persuaded the Chancellor to allocate to London in this year’s Budget, supporting businesses to expand and creating thousands of new jobs.
  • Directly create more than 200,000 jobs for those seeking work, and continue to improve skills by creating on average 1,000 new apprenticeships every week and ensure they benefit from the same travel discounts as full-time students.
  • Continue to support London’s green economy, with plans to deliver a total of 20,000 street trees, restoring 300 acres of green space, and retrofitting tens of thousands of homes to reduce household energy bills by an average of £180 a year.

Every pound possible has been removed from unnecessary bureaucracy and reinvested in economic growth. I have stood up relentlessly for the interests of the London economy, combating pointless red tape and crippling taxes, whether they come from London or Brussels. I have always energetically promoted London internationally.

I have secured record funding from No 10 for the capital’s transport network of more than £20 billion, delivering both the Tube upgrade and Crossrail to create the modern transport network our economy needs, and creating 32,000 jobs in the process. We have also secured the Thameslink upgrade.

I have also transformed opportunities for young Londoners by creating more than 54,000 apprenticeships. I intend to do more and deliver 100,000 new apprenticeships by the end of this year.  I have helped the unemployed get back into work through subsidised travel and expanded the London Living Wage.  I have reduced business crime, and started to transform great swathes of the capital through the regeneration of the Royal Docks and the Battersea, Nine Elms, Vauxhall area, creating jobs and securing new funding to drive even more growth.

Having provided a record number of affordable homes for low and middle income Londoners, I have also secured major new investment powers on housing. Despite a tough spending round I secured more than £3 billion for housing and regeneration, in addition to negotiating the transfer of 530 hectares of land to City Hall at no cost.

We have made progress despite difficult times. At the Mayoral election on 3rd May this progress is at risk. The choice at this election is between taking London backwards, and my plan to ensure we continue to grow our economy, working constructively with the private sector to create jobs, drive investment and make London the best city to live in.

Categories: Campaign Updates, economy, housing, jobs and skills, London, quality of life | Tags: Economy, Growth, Investment, Jobs, Manifesto

26 March 2012

My Transport Manifesto

Today I am launching my transport manifesto. It's a critical part of my 9 point plan for a Greater London.

A world class city should have a world class transport system that is safe, efficient, economical and reliable. A transport system that uses modern technology to meet the changing needs of Londoners and to guarantee long term sustainable lower fares.

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Categories: Campaign Updates, London, transport | Tags: Boris bikes, Boris johnson, Buses, Congestion, Crossrail, Cycle hire, Freedom pass, Investment, Manifesto, Rail, Roadworks, Suburban rail, Transport, Tube, Unions

14 March 2012

Reporting back to Londoners

In the coming weeks I will be setting out my manifesto commitments for taking this great city forward over the next four years.

And I want my promises to be judged by the determination and success with which I fulfilled the promises I made to Londoners in 2008.

The last four years have been a long road, but despite the toughest financial times in a generation, we have a strong record of delivering for London.

I am proud of what we have achieved, which is why I am publishing a Progress Report on my 2008 manifesto commitments.

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Categories: Campaign Updates, crime, economy, environment, Fighting London's corner, housing, jobs and skills, London, Olympics, quality of life, sport, transport, youth | Tags: 2008, Manifesto, Progress report, Promises delivered