England & Wales

David Cameron, Conservatives and local democracy

UPDATE:  The BBC are now running this story, with video clips of David Cameron’s speech, and quotes from me

Over the weekend the Milibands highlighted devolution as part of the way forward from the current political mailaise and it is great to see David Cameron stepping up his commitment to decentralise power, in this article published this morning in the Guardian.   I gave reaction earlier to the Guardian and am  quoted here on the power of general competence.   It is quite a negative slant on what I said which was that the Power of General Competence is a good idea and something we support, but it isn’t a silver bullet to change our system of government.    We also need a new constitutional settlement between central and local; a new approach to local taxation and local finance, so that more money which is spent locally is raised locally and is subject to greater accountability at the ballot box;  and much more emphasis on local delivery of key public services.    The disappointing aspect of today’s media comment by David Cameron is the renewed commitment to directly elected police chiefs which I believe would prove a disaster.    I’ll post more on this but must rush now.