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Birmingham joins 'Core Cities Cabinet' to call for greater freedom from London

Sir Albert Bore joins council leaders in Glasgow to sign key declaration seeking radical shake-up of way UK is run

Sir Albert Bore
Sir Albert Bore

Birmingham is among eight English cities which today will call for greater freedom and government funding to drive economic growth and create jobs.

Birmingham City Council leader Sir Albert Bore has joined council leaders at a meeting in Glasgow to sign a declaration calling for a radical shake-up of the way the country is run.

The leader of Glasgow City Council even argues that handing power to the UK's largest cities would have more radical and far reaching consequences for the country's economy than Scottish independence.

Known as the 'Core Cities Cabinet', the group comprises Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield.

They have joined today with the leader of Glasgow City Council to call for funding and powers to be released from government departments in London to enable them to invest in transport, infrastructure and support local industry.

They argue property taxes like business rates should be handed to city councils rather than Whitehall and that cities could be drivers for wealth and job creation.

Sir Albert said: "The Core Cities are meeting today in Glasgow to make a very clear statement about our commitment to our sister cities in Scotland.

"Our desire to work together across the UK has been warmly welcomed by the leaders of the major Scottish cities.

"The truly radical agenda for change in the UK is to return powers and freedoms to our great cities. The 21st century will be the century of cities rather than nations.

"We are determined to work together to take that agenda forward in the years ahead."

Sir Richard Leese, chairman of the Core Cities Cabinet and leader of Manchester City Council, said: "The Core Cities and Glasgow have a great deal in common and we share a proud history of industrial ingenuity.

"Both the Core Cities and Glasgow are in favour of radical constitutional change. Greater freedoms to our nation's cities should be granted, starting with the devolution of property taxes.

"There is also a desperate need to build better connectivity and by working together, for example to deliver HS2, we will make life better for people and businesses in every UK city. This should be our shared vision."

 

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