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Why Hopkins is right to float idea of a breakaway
The residents of Ilkley and Keighley pay more in Council Tax than those who live in the three Bradford parliamentary seats combined – but do not get anything like value for money in return.
So claims MP Kris Hopkins, who is calling for the people of the two towns to be given the chance to vote to break away from Bradford.
His convoluted argument says that once the relative wealth is taken away from Bradford the true level of deprivation of the city would be seen and more help given.
It is all part and parcel of his stated objection to having a directly-elected mayor for Bradford and wants to lead the ‘No’ vote campaign in Ilkley.
He is right when he says the arguments in favour of independence are strong – a move which this newspaper would support.
People do want accountable, locally-based representation.
Money should be spent on local priorities and not on projects dictated by City Hall.
There will be lots of hoops to jump through before this becomes a reality and lots of people will quite rightly raise questions about how any break from Bradford would work.
Mr Hopkins is right to float this idea and stick his head above the parapet.
But he needs to put flesh on the bones of the idea to help people make an informed decision on both the ‘No’ to an elected mayor vote and the breakaway further down the line.