Labour MPs from the region have responded to today's Queen's Speech.
Responding to the Queen’s Speech, Catherine McKinnell, Labour MP for Newcastle North & Shadow Treasury Minister said:
“The Government continues to provide many warm words about creating a Northern Powerhouse, but we are still to find out exactly what, if anything, this means for the North East.
“What we do know is that they're determined to make any new powers and funding dependent on having an elected mayor. This is anti-democratic and makes a mockery of the notion of localism.
“The Conservatives will deign to give the North East more say in growing our economy - but only if we do as we're told!”
Copeland MP and Labour’s Shadow Health Minister, Jamie Reed MP said:
“The Government have no plans to support the West Cumberland Hospital, no plans for investment in the A595 and no plans to help our young people take advantage of the opportunities we are building in West Cumbria. This is sadly typical - we will succeed despite the government, not because of anything it might do.
“The announced plans for devolution to city areas will do nothing for our communities and the plans are clearly half-baked. Imposing models of governance on areas and limiting the regions which can influence decisions on their own matters is not the right way to achieve meaningful change; the Government are clearly more concerned with playing politics than empowering communities. It is absolutely imperative that we reconnect with communities that are disconnected from London and Westminster, and give areas such as ours the responsibility and powers necessary to affect real change closer to home. This means understanding what is happening in the forgotten England of marginalised towns and peripheral communities, not simply rolling out some headlines for the low-hanging fruit represented by our major metropolitan areas. This is atypically disingenuous approach to devolution and England deserves a better deal.
“The legislative agenda laid out by the Government makes one thing clear: the next five years is going to be a time of further cuts for Copeland. Council budgets will be slashed further and our public services will be under increasing pressure. But, our best days are ahead of us and, even without Government support, I will continue to fight to secure our brighter future.”