ILKLEY'S Labour candidate John Grogan handed in his nomination papers at City Hall in Bradford this week.
And as he did so he issued a pledge to constituents across Keighley and Ilkley.
"If elected I will hold regular advertised advice surgeries in each of the six wards in the constituency at which anybody will be able to book an appointment and attend. These surgeries will happen once a month in Ilkley. There will be no filtering system in my office. I believe it is the right of any constituent to see their MP directly with their problems or the issues they feel passionately about. This is the system which existed under Ann Cryer and this is the system I will reintroduce."
Mr Grogan also said if elected he would oppose the proposed Aire Valley Waste to Energy Plant.
He said: "In April 2015 just before the General Election I welcomed the announcement of investment into Keighley as a result of that planning permission. Unfortunately the company concerned, Keighley Clean Energy, had not done their homework properly. They subsequently submitted a very different planning application which reduced the number of plants to two and significantly increased the size of the buildings. A council committee decided in August 2015 to unanimously reject the application on the grounds of its visual impact on the Aire Valley and on nearby East Riddlesden Hall which is an important local employer and tourist attraction. They were of the opinion that these factors outweighed possible economic benefits. Had I been elected as Keighley's MP in 2015 I would have supported that decision. In February 2017 a company now called Endless Energy received approval for a planning application which to my mind was not very different to that which had been rejected in 2015. The height of the buildings and the chimney stack were much the same as had been suggested previously. It is noteworthy that the National Trust which owns East Riddlesden Hall maintained its objection. In addition Bradford Council's Landscape Officer outlined his continuing concerns including the visual impact of the plume from the chimney stack. I think the committee was ill advised to change their decision from that taken in 2015. My own opinion is that there were sufficient grounds to reject the application using similar arguments to those employed in August 2015.
"I will therefore oppose the development if I am elected as Keighley's Member of Parliament."
He added: "Some of the evidence regarding environmental issues which are the responsibility of the Environment Agency rather than the Council requires further investigation. An MP has a duty to act upon the concerns of their constituents. If elected as Keighley's MP I will commit to make it my number one priority to become a member of the House of Commons Select Committee on the Environment. I will seek to persuade the Committee to start an urgent inquiry into the economic, environmental and health impacts of Waste to Energy Plants nationwide. This matter affects not just Keighley but many areas and needs to be placed higher up the national agenda. I would expect the Environment Agency to consider the findings of the Select Committee as they carry out their statutory duties. I would seek to meet with them every two months to monitor their actions. I will work with others to ensure they take into account all available evidence."