Candidates spell out how they would back small firms

BUDDING MPs were urged to be the voice of small business at a major political debate in Yorkshire.

Date:13th April 2015, Picture James Hardisty, (JH1008/06c). The Federation of Small Businesses West Yorkshire hustings event at Leeds Town Hall. Pictured Members of panel (Left to right) Alex Sobel, (Labour), Adrian Cruden, (Green Party), Rob Butler, (UKIP), Andrea Jenkyns, (Conserative), Neil Kendall, (FSB Regional Chairman - West Yorkshire), and Rod Sutcliffe, (Yorkshire First).

Members of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) called for business rates reform and measures to cut energy bills at a West Yorkshire Hustings event held in Leeds Town Hall.

The event, which was chaired by Greg Wright, The Yorkshire Post’s deputy business editor, copied the format of BBC TV’s Question Time.

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The candidates – Robert Butler of UKIP, Adrian Cruden of the Green Party, Stewart Golton of the Liberal Democrats, Andrea Jenkyns of the Conservatives, Alex Sobel of Labour and Rod Sutcliffe of Yorkshire First – outlined how they would help small businesses to grow if they were elected.

The FSB, which represents small businesses and the self-employed, has 200,000 members in the UK, and 5,000 members in West Yorkshire.

In its Business Manifesto, the FSB calls for the next Govern-ment to place small businesses at the heart of policymaking, and create a coherent long-term plan for business support. The FSB also wants to see increased competition in the banking sector.