HAVE you got a question for Redditch MP Karen Lumley? If so email firstname.lastname@example.org with Standard Questions in the subject box. Questions are welcome on any subject but please try and keep them brief.
Q:IN A recent answer you came over as very much pro-decentralisation. It is all the rage in the wake of the recent Scottish political farce. However, do you really believe in devolving more political power to incompetent authorities such as Worcestershire, Birmingham or Tower Hamlets? While one might consider some sort of local enterprise board as a good thing one worries about the local authority’s fiscal abilities. Perhaps you might spell out the extent of your support for de-centralisation?
A: Ultimately my support for decentralisation comes from the belief that people are better at deciding what is best for their local area than central government. This doesn’t wholly have to be about creating another layer of politicians. Government doesn’t have all the answers and indeed it shouldn’t try to. In recent years we have seen communities given more powers to come together to address local issues, but we must see more of this.
I’m not going to pretend to have the perfect formula and indeed there is no such thing. Each region of our country is different and one size certainly won’t fit all. What is needed is for local people to sit down together and work out what is best for their area. One such example of where this is happening already is the Business Leaders group which I set up in 2011 to build on the fantastic business foundations in Redditch, allowing businesses and stakeholders to develop their story together so that there is clarity of vision and goals to help grow the local economy. I want to see more powers and rights given to our communities. Power should not just come from the top down. Redditch is our town and we should all have a say on its future.