Making the Case for Devolution of Powers to Cornwall

Posted on: 6th December 2014

Making the Case for Devolution of Powers to Cornwall, the Council Leader, John Pollard, has launched the start of a debate on the powers Cornwall should be demanding from the Government with the publication of the draft “Case for Cornwall”.

Presenting the first draft of the Case for Cornwall to Members of the Council, Mr Pollard said it was time for Cornwall to be given the freedom to manage its own affairs.

“Seeking more powers for Cornwall is not new – we have been striving for more autonomy for years” he said. “This has provided us with experience, expertise and confidence and we want to continue that journey. We know that we can deliver and we now want to seek the ability to act as the people of Cornwall wish, not as Westminster will allow.”

“Cornwall has a clear border, the Cornish have minority status, we have one heritage and we are one council. These are the special attributes that devolution can and should capitalise upon.”

The draft document, which has been developed by a group of Members and officers over the past few months, sets out a number of “asks” based on the granting of new powers and freedoms for Cornwall. These range from a five year fairer funding settlement for all public services in Cornwall and devolved delivery of funding and investment streams, to greater control over large scale energy infrastructure, additional powers to decentralise bus regulation and retaining a fraction of fuel duty to maintain Cornwall’s extensive road network.

The Council will be holding a consultation on the draft Case for Cornwall in the New Year. This will include a consultation with partners and stakeholders and the opportunity for members of the public to give their views by letter or e mail. All views will be considered and will help shape a final document which will be considered at a meeting of the full Council on 20 January.

“We need to create a document which can speak for the whole of Cornwall, for all sections of society and all interests, including businesses, local communities, and politicians”said Mr Pollard.”We need to create something that is direct, clear and well- founded and will gain widespread support. The proposals have been divided into those we want to achieve now, some of which are already in the pipeline and have widespread support from partners, such as the LEP, while others still need further discussion”.

“I recognise that no one will be happy with everything but I believe we can set a campaign, support our Strategy, fight for change and bring greater devolution to Cornwall, if we are all prepared to act together and stand up for Cornwall.”