We asked each of the parties to say what they would do for St Albans. Below, Cllr Simon Grover writes for the Green Party.

The St Albans District Green Party stands for:

  • A society that puts people first and works for the common good
  • A planet protected from climate change now and in the future
  • An economy that gives everyone their fair share
  • A publicly funded, publicly provided NHS free at the point of use
  • Affordable and secure homes for all
  • A public transport system that puts passengers first
  • Sustainable local communities
  • Open and accountable decision-making

St Albans District Council could do a lot better in the services it provides. It could do more to support the local economy, provide truly affordable housing, and reduce pollution and congestion through a sustainable transport policy. It could reduce the waste our district produces, improve our green spaces, improve the state of local democracy and fight climate change.

Our main focus this year is to retain our seat on the council, in St Peters ward. But we are standing candidates in most other wards too, and every year we get more votes, taking us closer to getting more councillors.

We oppose building on the Green Belt and I was the only party leader at the council to vote against it in the recent debate on the local plan. This building would not provide the affordable housing we need – we don’t need more million-pound mansions. The answer is careful redevelopment of existing sites, to provide modern, well-planned, affordable housing for the next generation of families.

Another major and increasing issue facing the district is air pollution. We’ve discovered that pollution exceeds safe levels in locations across the city. Pollution is a silent killer and the council must act to keep heavy lorries out, stop idling, clean up buses and taxis and reroute through traffic.

National politics does influence the way many people vote. That’s fair enough because your political badge is a short cut for people who want to know what sort of person will be representing them. But votes are not stupid. When they meet local candidates face to face they get a much better idea of what the person is like, and can make a better decision about who to vote for.