Deputy PM grilled over Welsh powers delay


I've just realised it's almost lunchtime on Tuesday and I haven't written about the Silk commission this week. (New readers start here). Apologies.

Liberal Democrat MP Mark Williams has just raised the UK government's delay in responding to the commission's suggestion that the Welsh government should get control of some taxes.

Mr Williams told his own party leader, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, that the recommendations were "of critical importance to the people of Wales" and asked when the response would be published.

Mr Clegg, who last month blamed the Conservative half of the coalition government for the delay, told Mr Williams at question time:

"I understand the impatience for progress to be made on adoption of the recommendations. As you know, we have done some work latterly on the implications of stamp duty, devolution aspects of the system of stamp duty.

"I am a huge supporter of the thinking behind the Silk commission. I'm acutely aware that it's supported by all parties in Wales and I hope we'll be able to make progress on it without further delay."

At least he didn't say "in due course". Mr Clegg once promised a decision by spring this year, but springwatch turned into summerwatch, which has now turned into autumnwatch - with little obvious sign of an imminent announcement.

Tomorrow, it's the turn of the Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones to ask the UK government about the timetable, at the risk of confirming the prime minister's views about the priorities of those who work in Cardiff Bay.

David Cornock Article written by David Cornock David Cornock Parliamentary correspondent, Wales

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  • rate this

    Comment number 35.

    #34 Ah yes, Mab. We see from the USA how successful having two elected Houses with compensating powers is. You avoid tyranny by having perpetual lock-up.
    So your glorious plan is to have 100AMs and then perhaps 50 Senators, all on the public payroll.
    Then abolish the SoS(W) because we don't need to talk to Westminster: they can just send the cheque and mind their own business.
    Fantastic !

  • rate this

    Comment number 34.

    32: Get rid of the Welsh Office , the money then can be spent on the 40 AMs needed along with the 60 already there then create a second chamber voted in by the people not appointed my politicians every other Senedd election similar to the house of representatives in the US so it can scrutinize Welsh Government's legislation whilst holding them to account as use so much desire.

  • rate this

    Comment number 33.

    #32 If there are not enough AMs available to scrutinise assembly business, maybe we should insist that AMs give up other jobs, including government posts at all levels. Let us see if we can manage with 60 full-time AMs before spending millions.

  • rate this

    Comment number 32.

    29 Boxer - I believe that there are 14 ministers/deputy ministers which leaves 46 AMs failing to scrutinise/hold the WG to account.

    Several AM's are also local councillors and have other roles so squeezing time in for Assembly business is difficult for them. There is no lack of AM's just a lack of quality

  • rate this

    Comment number 31.

    Well to answer your question we could look at the fiscal elements of the WAG to see how they have performed since its inception. Well on the tax take we have seen a decline which leaves a fiscal black hole of over £10bn against expenditure. Then we can look at education which has seen again a constant decline dipping faster over the last couple of years. The NHS follows the same trends. So on....


Comments 5 of 35



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