Friday, 13 July 2012

Why do English cities get devolution and not Cornwall?

Devolution has many benefits, among them it frees areas from "Whitehall control" to allow more local specific solutions to be found, it allows areas "to decide for themselves how to boost their local economies". Devolution promises to help "young people looking for jobs" and "businesses to expand". Now these arguments and the quotes in italics, are not the words of me or a member of Mebyon Kernow or the Welsh Assembly or the Scottish Parliament or a London Assembly member, they are not the words of a nationalist but of Nick Clegg. Announcing the plans to devolve power to eight English cities (Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, Nottingham, Manchester and Sheffield) the benefits for these cities are:

1. More power to invest in growth.
2. More freedom to support local businesses.
3. More power over budgets and resources to drive infrastructure and development.
4. Powers to deliver the skills training local people and businesses need.

Certainly these positive attributes of devolution are not merely confined to cities. Cornwall could do with more power to invest in growth. Cornish businesses could do with tailored help. In infrastructure too, we could do with some investment. There are obvious advantages to a tailored Cornish skills training package being rolled out to help our economy.

My only question is why can't the government see that Cornwall could benefit too from such measures? That a Cornish assembly could easily form an integral part of localism. It is obvious to me that is cities can be given the powers and responsibility to fix their own problems why not Kernow? We as much as anywhere on this isle deserve to have change, so we too can be ambitious, so we can drive growth by investing in infrastructure, skills and training. The time has come for Cornwall to gain devolution we were ignored when London, Scotland and Wales were granted their own powers, hopefully this time can be our time.

All quotes taken from the Communities and Local Government website.