UKIP leader in Huntingdonshire ponders bid for mayoral role

Councillor Paul Bullen

Councillor Paul Bullen - Credit: Archant

The leader of UKIP in Huntingdonshire has revealed he is considering standing for the newly-created post of mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Cambridgeshire County Council member, Councillor Paul Bullen told The Hunts Post he is looking to represent the party in the contest, despite being against the current devolution deal.

“I don’t completely agree with the devolution agreement as it is pushing more powers upwards rather than taking them down to the local people – unfortunately this devolution deal does not do that,” Cllr Bullen, from St Ives, said.

If voted into the position Cllr Bullen has insisted his first job will be to demonstrate the authority does not need to be headed up by a mayor.

“We already have three tiers of local government, I believe we need smaller local governments which is why a unitary authority the size of Cambridgeshire is the way

forward,” added Cllr Bullen.

“What we have done by voting in the deal is devolved powers into another tier.”

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Cllr Bullen said he has been approached by a number of party members asking him to put himself forward for the position.

Elections for the party’s representative will take place in January and full elections for the mayor of the combined authority will take place in May next year.

If he isn’t chosen Cllr Bullen has said he will consider whether to stand again as a

county councillor.

The combined authority will have reasonability for transport, key roads, strategic planning and control of a £100million housing and infra-structure fund.

The mayor will also be given control of an additional £20 million funding allocation for 30 years to boost growth.

The government will give the county a further £70m million over five years to meet housing needs.

Also standing in the election is independent candidate Peter Dawe, with Conservative,

Labour, and Liberal Democrat parties yet to select their official candidates.