The government today welcomed publication of the report by the Commission on Devolution in Wales (the ‘Silk Commission’) recommending the devolution of certain fiscal powers to Wales.
The report entitled Empowerment and Responsibility: Financial Powers to Strengthen Wales, makes recommendations to devolve certain tax and borrowing powers to the National Assembly for Wales and the Welsh government. The UK government will now consider the recommendations and will respond in due course.
The commission, set up last year, will now turn to the second part of its remit, to review the current powers of the National Assembly for Wales. As a result there will be a number of changes to the make up of the commission.
Dyfrig John CBE, an independent member of the commission and the Welsh Labour member Sue Essex will step down. They will be replaced by Helen Molyneux, Chief Executive of New Law Solicitors, Cardiff, and Jane Davidson, a former Welsh Minister, respectively. Trefor Glyn Jones CVO, a former Lord Lieutenant of Clwyd, will also join the commission to ensure the views of North Wales are fully represented.
Secretary of State for Wales, David Jones said:
I am grateful to Paul Silk and the commission for their hard work in bringing this report to fruition.
They have sought opinions from across Wales, and have ensured its recommendations are agreed unanimously across all the commissioners, which include representatives from all four parties in the Assembly.
The government will now consider the report’s recommendations, discuss with relevant colleagues across government and respond formally in due course.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank both Dyfrig John and Sue Essex for their hard work and expertise in developing the recommendations. The commission can be rightly proud of the cross-party consensus it has achieved in publishing this report.
As we look towards Part II, I know that the commission will benefit from the wide range of expertise the new commissioners, Helen Molyneux, Trefor Glyn Jones and Jane Davidson, will bring to the task. I am sure all three are keen to get started.
The Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander said:
I am grateful to Paul Silk and the commission for the expertise and rigour that they have brought to this important work. We look forward to reviewing the commission’s recommendations and working with the Welsh government and all parties in the Welsh Assembly to deliver an ambitious outcome that best meets the needs of the people of Wales.
Notes for editors
A copy of the Written Ministerial Statement can be found here. http://www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-vote-office/November_2012/19-11-12/8-Wales-DevolutionCommission.PDF
The Silk Commission’s report Empowerment and Responsibility: Financial Powers to Strengthen Wales is available here. http://commissionondevolutioninwales.independent.gov.uk/files/2012/11/English-WEB-main-report.pdf
The Silk Commission was set up last year and the terms of reference were agreed by all four political parties in the Assembly. A copy of the terms of reference can be found here http://commissionondevolutioninwales.independent.gov.uk/files/2011/11/Commission-ToR-Final.pdf