Cameron hails localism as he kicks off Tory election campaign

9 Apr 16

David Cameron has said the government’s “devolution revolution” is introducing localist reforms to give councils more control over their finances and greater freedoms over development.

Launching the Conservative Party’s local election manifesto ahead of the May 5 polls, the prime minister said moves to give local authorities four-year funding deals and full retention of business rates from 2020 would ensure they had a direct stake in economic growth.

“This government’s localist reforms are empowering local councils, local neighbourhoods and local residents,” Cameron said.

“Local councils now have more control over their finances, more freedoms to decide where development should and shouldn’t go, and more powers to boost jobs and support local firms.”

He said the government wanted to knock down every barrier to opportunity in the country. “Our plan: giving everyone the chance to own a home; taking on the vested interest and bringing excellence to every school; sweeping new powers for local people; a seven day NHS; creating jobs; raising wages; taking on extremism, ending segregation,” he added.

The Conservatives said that the government had also simplified the planning system – protecting the green belt and introducing local plans intended to give residents have more of a say over decisions in their area.

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