“Break the Power of Westminster and Whitehall” – Liverpool Council urged

Whitehall

Too many decisions are made in Whitehall and Westminster by people who have no idea about our local circumstances. We need to bring decisions back to our area and all the other regions of England.

Liverpool’s Liberal Democrat Group are calling for a major transfer of power from London to the Liverpool City Region at this Wednesday’s meeting of the Liverpool City Council. In a motion from my colleague Woolton Lib Dem Councillor, Kris Brown the we are suggesting the transfer of responsibility for Health, Policing and economic development from London to Liverpool.

Cllr Kris Brown will say, “For too long well-meaning but ill-informed people in London have set targets and spending priorities with no knowledge of our area, our people and our organisations.  That has meant a huge waste of money and a failure to concentrate on the things that really matter. Not only have we had the wrong targets we have been totally failing to link up central and local government, the voluntary sector and the private sector in a meaningful way”.

I will say, “this move would bring Halton policing into Merseyside and abolish the position of Elected Police Commissioner. It would bring money from central government to support trade and economic activity in partnership between the Liverpool City Region, Councils and private business. As we approach BREXIT which is already causing so much damage to our industry this local joining up will help preserve many jobs and industries which are under threat.

ENDS:  The Council meeting will take place on Wednesday 14th November at 5 p.m. at the Liverpool Town Hall

The full text of the motion to the Council meeting

14. Devolution of Powers to the Liverpool City Region by Councillors Kris Brown and Richard Kemp CBE

Council welcomes the fact that all 8 Regional Mayors, including the Elected Mayor for the Liverpool City Region have jointly asked for more powers to be devolved to them by central government. It believes that the best value for taxpayers’ money will be created by locally elected decision makers devising policies and implementing plans based on a detailed local knowledge and the ability to create necessary local partnerships.

Accordingly, it resolves to ask its representative on the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and the Elected Mayor for the LCR to work to the following objectives:

1.  The incorporation of the political oversight and tax raising functions of the Elected Police Commissioner for Merseyside to be brought under the control of the Elected Regional Mayor with appropriate scrutiny arrangements through the Combined Authority with the subsequent abolition of the post of Police Commissioner;

2.  That Halton Borough Council be asked for their support to agree that the Government be asked to transfer policing responsibilities for the Halton area from Cheshire to Merseyside Constabularies;

3.  The transfer of elements of control for the Health Service within the LCR boundaries on the lines of the power transfers of the Greater Manchester model; and

4.  Reduction in the budgets of the Department of Business, Enterprise, Industry & Science with an equivalent increase in budget to the Regional Mayor to improve investment in technology, trade missions, universities and grants to industry within the City Region.

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About richardkemp

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool. Deputy Chair and Lib Dem Spokesperson on the LGA Community Wellbeing Board. Married to the lovely Cllr Erica Kemp CBE with three children and four grandchildren.
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