The South Yorkshire mayoral candidates: Green Party’s Rob Murphy

Improving transport, transparent governance and supporting local businesses are the Green Party’s primary goals for Sheffield City Region.

Rob Murphy, mayoral candidate and Green Party councillor for Sheffield’s City ward, said: “Yorkshire’s local governments are known throughout the world for being very poor.”

The current Labour council has been described as both tribal and undemocratic by critics.

Coun Murphy said: “If a Green was elected it would bring a political earthquake and that could shake council leaders into some sort of communality.”

As a councillor for eight years, Coun Murphy would like a scrutiny board with proportional representation from all parties to scrutinise the actions of the mayor.

Coun Murphy said: “I want to be an inclusive mayor. I don’t just want to govern for the Green Party.”

The Green Party believe South Yorkshire’s economy is being left behind due to bad decision making and poor governance.

Coun Murphy wants to connect cities and villages with a good public transport system to provide wider career opportunities for young people and the unemployed.

“There’s no point in saying you’re going to give training to a young person in a pit village when they’ve got no way of getting there,” Coun Murphy said.

Coun Murphy said he wishes to improve connectivity by expanding high-speed broadband availability to rural areas of South Yorkshire.

To improve transport, Coun Murphy has suggested to introduce a workplace parking levy where large employers would be expected to pay a levy on the parking spaces outside their workspace in return for less congested roads.

Similar to a Nottingham City Council’s parking scheme, Coun Murphy suggested the money from the levy would be used to improve Sheffield’s public transport by introducing segregated cycle routes, a more reliable bus service, faster trains and better local rail links.

While the Sheffield City Region mayor will not have power to cancel the plans to fell Sheffield’s trees, Coun Murphy said he would push for the leader of Sheffield City Council to take up the challenge of publicising the felling contract that has been redacted for ‘commercial confidentiality’.

Coun Murphy said: “I have two young children and I want a better world for them. That starts now, from tackling crime and litter, to reducing road accidents and pollution.”

“I know the area and its issues. Being elected to the council has given me more time and influence to work on your behalf,” he added.

Voters in Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster will vote for a Sheffield City Region mayor on Thursday 3 May.