City MP Oliver Colvile in live online Herald Q&A
Andy Chapman: Since your party have been in government do you think the average Plymouth citizen's disposable income has gone up or down? What ever your choice is please can you give a reason why you think this is.
Oliver Colvile: I think that disposable incomes have gone down because the Coalition Government inherited a very large deficit in our public finances.
Jason: Now that you have failed, along with your party, and you do nothing for our city and worry about trips abroad etc, are you all worried more people will vote UKIP next time around as they seam to be the only party who lissens a little?
Oliver Colvile: The choice you will face at the next General Election in 2015 will be between David Cameron or Ed Millband as our Prime Minister. Do you really want to give the keys back to the guys who crashed the car?
ThisIsPlymouth: Question sent in from Charlie Dodd: Was the Church of England right to ban women bishops?
Oliver Colvile MP: I don't think they were right to stop women from becoming bishops. I have to declare an interest in that, one of my sisters is a vicar in the Church of England.
Roger Duque: How can this Government justify closing tax loopholes for online retail companies resulting in job losses and higher prices?
Oliver Colvile MP: I think that the whole matter of internet sales has changed the whole tax system. We need to have a low tax regime which will attract businesses to invest in the UK. One of the key issues in making this decision will be the level of tax. The higher it is the less likely companies are to invest in the UK.
Dan: This government spends less per head for regional transport in this area than anywhere else in the UK and in the recent national rail transport plan, Devon and Cornwall got absolutely nothing with upgrades finishing in Bristol. Do you and the other Devon and Cornwall MPs do nothing to highlight this?
Oliver Colvile MP: You are quite right. We have seen little investment in our transport network for some while. That is why I called on the Government in the House of Commons to dual the A303, improve the A38, have more three-hour train journeys from Plymouth to London and have trains getting into Plymouth before 9am. I have also got the Secretary of State to come down to Plymouth in a few weeks time.
Rick OShay: You are on record as having voted against the smoking ban and having received gifts and hospitality from Japan Tobacco International. How do you explain this link?
Oliver Colvile: Thanks Rick. I have always been very clear on this. I think that adults should take responsibility for their own lives. That is why I have said that we should have two kinds of pubs – ones where you can smoke and one where you can't. I am keen that we discourage children from taking up smoking and that is why I have supported plain paper packaging. By the way, I don't smoke.
Charlie Dodd: What are your views on the loss of Plymouth Airport and can it be reopened?
Oliver Colvile: Thanks Charles. I am very sorry that the airport has been closed, for the time being. Unfortunately the Labour council decided to sell the leasehold to Sutton Harbour in 2004. For it to reopen a private investor needs to buy that lease off Sutton Harbour. I have written to both the council and Sutton Harbour asking them for a value. Unfortunately neither have been willing to give a price. If you are going to produce a business plan you need to know how much it will all cost.
John: what should the future of the Dance Academy be? Would it make a good mosque?
Oliver Colvile: Hi John. I am very keen that we should see the Dance Academy restored as it was the last place that Laurel & Hardy performed in the UK. It has real history.