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UPDATE: Cornwall Calls For Devolution

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6:11am 22nd September 2014
(Updated 6:11am 22nd September 2014)

Officials campaigning for Cornish devolution brand the Scottish vote a 'game changer.'

55% of people said no to independence.

But the Prime Minister is promising more powers for Scotland and says the English voices must be heard too.

Dick Cole from Mebyon Kernow said: "People have shown their disenchantment with central government, the Westminster elite and we've got to build on that to say, we want a new democratic settlement for Cornwall and it's got to be meaningful, it's got to be powerful and it's got to be really able to make a difference to the lives of the ordinary people of Cornwall.

"We need to be treated as a historic nation in our own right, just as they accepted the Cornish as a national minority and significant economic powers, similar to what the Scottish parliament has already got. Let's be ambitious for Cornwall and let's get those powers down here; let's bring them home from Westminster."

On Thursday, Pirate FM told you how Cornwall Council was setting out its case for more local control.

Officials are asking government for more powers over how they raise and spends our money.

They want to put issues like a rural fuel discount back on the table.

"Over the past few weeks we have seen the Government offer sweeping new powers to Scotland", said Cornwall Council Leader John Pollard.

He said: "At the same time Ministers are doing deals with cities to give them more powers.  We want the same freedoms for Cornwall.

"Not only are we a distinct region with a single Local Enterprise Partnership and a single health commissioner covering Cornwall, we were recently granted National Minority Framework Status because of our unique culture and heritage.

"Last month we successfully persuaded the Government to let us decide how to spend the funding we receive from Europe and we now want to build on this success to see more powers transferred from Whitehall to County Hall."

Adding that transferring powers to the Council would not create an additional layer of bureaucracy, Mr Pollard said that the authority wanted to have a sensible discussion with the Government over how any new system would work: "We don't want to see the "cities" system imposed on Cornwall - this is not a case of a single devolution model fits all.  We know that Cornwall is unique and we need to ensure that we work with the Government to create a model which is right for us."

The Council is currently developing a new Strategy which sets out the authority's aim to create a sustainable Cornwall, which is prosperous, resilient and resourceful with strong communities where the most vulnerable are protected.

"One of the key aims of the Strategy is to create an "Ambitious Cornwall" which has more local control over Government spending" said John Pollard.

"This is echoed in the Strategic Economic Plan which was recently published by the Local Enterprise Partnership.  We don't want the way we spend our money and deliver services to people in Cornwall to be dictated by the Government - we want to make our own decisions.

"Cornwall has a proud history of standing up and fighting for what it believes in and we are determined to take advantage of this moment and shape our own destiny."

6:11am 22nd September 2014

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