by Iain Roberts on 6 October, 2015
Liberal Democrats are supporting the Fair Deal Devo campaign launched by the Manchester Evening News, Bolton News, Wigan Evening Post and Oldham Evening Chronicle.
“There’s a growing consensus that, if Greater Manchester is to achieve its potential, we need a fair funding deal from government.” Cllr Sue Derbyshire, Lib Dem leader of Stockport Council said. “Talk of the Northern Powerhouse has to be more than words. We’re starting to see the first signs of real money, but there’s a long way to go.”
The Liberal Democrats have been calling for fair transport funding for the region to close the gap between London and Greater Manchester, and are campaigning against further Police cuts and the government proposals to close courthouses across the region.
“Devolution has the potential to transform the lives of people across Greater Manchester, creating jobs, reducing poverty and making us all better off.” Sue said. “But it won’t work if it’s done on the cheap or if, despite all the rhetoric, the government just uses it to pass on difficult cuts.”
Sue also spoke out about the need for the Combined Authority – where all the councils work together – to up its game and become more open and transparent.
“It isn’t enough just to tell people what’s going on.” Sue said. “Decisions are being taken that affect millions of people. If it’s your life that’s going to be affected, you need to know before any decision is made so you can have your say. You need information in plain English, not council jargon. You need everything to be easily available online. You need the meetings to be webcast, not held behind closed doors, so you can hold your representatives to account. That’s not there today – we have to get it in place quickly.”4 Comments