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TEES VALLEY MAYOR: We take a look at everything you need to know about this years local elections

Tees Valley Mayor - we take a look at everything you need to know about this years local elections.
Thursday the 6th of May is local Election Day, and councils across the region are striving to make it as covid secure as possible in what will probably be the most unique Election Day to ever take place. If you are voting in person, you can expect to see screens between you and staff members at the polling stations.
Enhanced signage as well as floor markings and marshals directing people along one-way systems will also be present. You are encouraged to wash your hands before you leave your house and bring a face covering. You will need your own pen to mark the ballot paper.
If you have coronavirus symptoms, under no circumstance should you attend the polling station to vote. There are measures in place to ensure your vote still counts, as you can apply for an emergency proxy vote up until 5pm the day before, and nominate someone to vote on your behalf.
Remember, rules and regulations may differ depending on where you live so do check ahead with your own local authority before May 6th.
Over in Teesside, the race for Tees Valley mayor is well and truly on as Conservative Ben Houchen hopes to defend his position from Labour's Jessie Joe Jacobs. If elected, Jessie Joe Jacobs would be one of the country's first female metro mayor.
She promises to create thousands of green jobs for the area as well as investing in local leisure businesses, with the ambition of turning the area into an exciting visitor destination with the aim of generating a further 26,000 jobs in the culture and tourism sector. She says she will enhance transport routes, improving connectivity and create more affordable housing for key workers.
The current mayor, Ben Houchen has made securing investment and good quality well paid jobs his priority since his election in 2017. He says his campaigning over the past few years has seen the creation of Freeport's in the UK, with the Teesside freeport expected to create 18,000 skilled jobs for local workers. Securing the future of Teesside International airport has seen more airlines fly to more destinations, and a year long campaign saw central government make the decision to establish Treasury North in Darlington.
Both candidates are putting emphasis on jobs and employment, which could prove crucial to so many as we start the long road to recovery and look to bounce back from the devastating impacts of the pandemic.

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