Boris Johnson’s policy director has called for the Mayor of London to have “more power over taxation” to prevent him having to go “cap in hand to central government, both for money and permission” for new projects and initiatives.
Anthony Browne’s comments were made in an article for Public Servant magazine and come after Mayor Johnson last month set out a wide ranging vision for greater powers for the Mayor and London Assembly.
Browne says the role of Mayor “is appreciated by Londoners” but warns devolution to the capital “is half-baked” – a situation he blames on “Tony Blair being wary of who the first incumbent might be.”
Setting out a number of transport areas where the Mayor could make a difference, including development of river services and suburban rail services, Browne notes that the final say rests with bodies and politicians outside the Greater London Authority.
He also says the Johnson administration is not interested in a “vast land-grab…instead, we want to improve the standard of governance in London by having more devolution from central government, giving clearer accountability at the London level.”
The full article can be read at publicservice.co.uk