Council Leader welcomes calls for regional devolution

Somerset County Council Leader John Osman has welcomed calls for devolved powers for regions of England following last night’s independence referendum in Scotland.

But he said it was important that rural areas like Somerset – and not just cities –were given greater say over their own affairs and a fairer funding arrangement.

Although Scotland voted to reject independence, they were promised increased devolution of powers. And Prime Minster David Cameron also added: “Just as Scotland will have more power over their affairs, it follows England, Wales and N Ireland must have a bigger say over theirs.”

Cllr Osman commented: “I’m very pleased to hear Scotland has chosen to remain part of the UK, and I’m particularly pleased to hear the Prime Minister talk about giving all the regions more powers.

“I truly hope this includes rural areas like Somerset. We have suffered from chronic underfunding and have been ignored for far too long. I hope this is the first step towards greater powers and fairer funding for Somerset, and I will be working hard to make sure our voice is heard.”