London’s local and regional politicians have today written to Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles to set out a “united case” for enhancing the capital’s devolution settlement and drawing down further powers from central government.
The letter, which has been signed by London Mayor Boris Johnson, London Assembly Chair Dee Doocey and London Councils Chair Mayor Jules Pipe, sets out the devolution priority for each signatory which the three say will “result in significant savings for the taxpayer through streamlined and more efficient government structures.”
Proposals include turning the Royal Parks Agency into a GLA funded body with a board chaired by the Mayor and comprising three borough representatives and three Mayoral appointees.
It’s also suggested that the Port of London Authority become a GLA Group body, with a board appointed by the Mayor which would include representation from the London Assembly, boroughs and Kent and Essex.
There is also agreement that the Mayor and Transport Secretary “should jointly award the rail franchises for London suburban rail lines” with the Mayor then having an ongoing monitoring role.
All three signatories have also agreed that the London Thames Gateway Development Corporation “should expire at the end of its current life (two years), and powers should be returned to the boroughs.”
Another transport related change would be a reform of passenger watchdog London TravelWatch which would allow Assembly Members to sit on the body for the first time.