Outside the marginals

A commentary on the politics that followed the UK 2010, 2015 & 2017 elections (and THAT referendum)

Archive for the tag “North East England”

No Mayor, No Wey-Aye

Communities Secretary Sajid Javid has confirmed that a planned devolution deal for the North East will not go ahead after a majority of local leaders voted against it.

Mr Javid said he was disappointed that four of the seven councils to form a planned North East Combined Authority – Durham, Gateshead, Sunderland, and South Tyneside – voted against the deal.

He insisted they would have received guaranteed investment of more than £1 billion and powers over transport, skills and regeneration.

Legislation to devolve the powers and enable 2017 elections for a North East mayor has now been shelved.
Morpeth Herald (quoting Reuters), 8 August 2016 | North East devolution plans shelved after local leaders reject deal

This sounds like petulance – on both sides, but I suspect it is more complicated.

First the £1bn is not as massive at it sounds; it is £30m a year for 30 years. For a population of a little under 2 million, that is £15 per head per year.

Read more…

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North East England is not Metropolitan

The mini devolution deal for North East (of England) is apparently in danger of running out of time.

In a letter sent to the councils which make up the North East Combined Authority, and which has been seen by the BBC, Mr Javid said: “I reaffirm the government’s commitment to implementing the North East devolution deal in full.

“[However] without an elected mayor the deal cannot progress.

“There is a significant risk now that we will run out of time to implement the deal unless you publish your governance review and scheme, and move forward with the consultation immediately.”
BBC News Website, 26 August 2016 | North East devolution delay ‘risks £900m investment’

Why does an area that includes two conurbations (Newcastle-Gateshead-Tyneside and Sunderland-Washington) and a huge rural area (Northumberland and Durham) need an elected mayor to manage transport, skills and training? The LEPs (remember them?) where set up by the Conservatives to address issues that included skills and training. Read more…

Brass Plaques

Salmond says he is not worried about Banks and Financial institutions threatening to leave Scotland when it votes for independence.

Quick look – What are banks saying now?

  • Lloyds – It said it could shift its legal home to to the headquarters it has in London. However, Lloyds said this was just a legal procedure and “there would be no immediate changes or issues”.
  • Clydesdale – The financial institution, which is part of National Australia Bank, said its contingency plans for a “Yes” vote included re-registering as an English company.
  • RBS – It confirmed it will relocate its registered headquarters to London if Scotland votes for independence next week.
  • Tesco – Its contingency plans include the creation of a “new registered company, domiciled in England”

BBC News Website 11 September 2014 : Scottish independence: RBS confirms London HQ move if Scotland votes ‘Yes’

Salmond has said:

“We know the moves both from Lloyds and the Royal Bank of Scotland will have no impact on operations or jobs. They are about brass plaques.
ibid

If he is happy for Scotland to become a “branch economy”, he needs to look at the experience of the North East of England. Read more…

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