Hackney Conservatives are delighted to announce that their candidate for next month's election for the Mayor of Hackney is local resident and campaigner Imtiaz Lunat.
Imtiaz has lived in Hackney for over 25 years, and currently lives in Hackney Downs ward.
He has run his own electrical business for the last 15 years, working predominantly with local housing associations. He and his wife have fostered vulnerable children for the last five years.
Celebrating his selection, Imtiaz said:
"I am delighted to be the Conservative candidate to be the next Mayor of Hackney. I've brought up my family here and this is where I run my business.
I first got involved in local campaigning when the Council tried to impose an unfair and un-transparent consultation process for a Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) in my area.
The Mayor and my ward's Labour councillors dismissed residents' concerns and wouldn't listen to what we had to say but I kept fighting until the Council U-turned and I realised the power that we all have to fight for what's best for our communities.
I want to do what I can to keep the cost of living down for families in Hackney. I'll freeze council tax-it's gone up by 3% this year.
I'll scrap the propaganda sheet Hackney Today and invest the savings in freezing council tax and cutting the price of parking permits. Over-zealous parking enforcement and high parking charges push up the cost of living, drive people out of town centres, harm local shops and make it difficult for friends and family to visit.
In the last two years Annual Parking Permits have gone up by up to 90%(£112 to £213 for an average diesel car). I'll halve this cost and introduce a Free Residents Roamer Scheme that will give Hackney Parking Permit holders the freedom to park in resident bays within any Parking Zone in the borough between 11am and 3pm.
I will make it a priority to tackle social isolation and loneliness. More than one in ten people in Hackney say they have too litle contact with other people and feel socially isolated-that's the highest rate for any council in England, and significantly higher than the inner London average of 7.7%. We should be ashamed of that and I think the Mayor could do more to bring people together.
Solving the housing crisis has to be a priority. The research shows that people want to live in streets not skyscrapers and I'll make sure we build mid-rise, high density and good quality genuinely affordable housing. We also need to make it easier for people to extend their existing homes so they can keep their families together and stay in the borough.
The Council's attitude to issues like my local CPZ shows that Hackney need change. Long-standing single party dominance in the Town Hall is not healthy for local democracy for local democracy and is bad for Hackney."