Rotheram joins Regional Mayors in calls
for more devolved powers and greater fiscal freedom
LIVERPOOL City Region Metro Mayor,
Steve Rotheram has agreed a joint statement with London Mayor, Sadiq Kahn and
the country's 5 recently elected Regional Mayors calling on Government to agree
greater spending powers, and commit to further devolution.
The statement comes on the eve of the 1st ever meeting of the UK's 7 most
powerful local politicians. The 3 Labour and 4 Tory Mayors represent cities and
regions that generate 40% of the UK's economic growth.
In a strongly worded joint statement, the Mayors describe the UK as still
"1 of the most centralised states in the western world," where local
political leaders have "far less control over the key economic levers and
far less say over the management of public services, than their counterparts in
other Cities around the world." Steve Rotheram said:- "Devolution
is the single most important means of achieving a more economically balanced and
prosperous UK. It transfers powers, resources and autonomy to the places that
will be our country's most important growth engines. It is vitally important
that the Government sustains and accelerates its commitment to devolution."
The Mayors will be pressing the Government for further powers relating to
skills, training and apprenticeships as a key to driving local economic growth,
as well as arguing for greater fiscal autonomy and local control over existing
taxes and the revenues they create. The meeting is scheduled to be the 1st in
a series aimed at redressing the UK's lack of political and economic balance.
Steve Rotheram added:- "This is the 1st time that we have met as 7
regional Mayors and this represents a decisive shift in the centre of political
gravity in this country. By working together across the party political divide
we can develop and present a joint case for greater devolution and enhanced
democracy. There is abundant evidence that decisions taken closer to the ground
are better informed, more accountable and more likely to deliver better outcomes
for local people."