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Stephen highres

Stephen Morgan, MP for Portsmouth South has joined Council Leaders from across the Solent region in expressing their shock and disappointment at news the government has dismissed the area’s devolution bid.

The three council’s involved in submitting the bid for a Solent Combined Authority in 2016, the Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and Southampton, have had no formal notification but found out from Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan.

Mr Morgan was advised the Solent proposals were no longer being considered in a letter from Devolution Minister Jake Berry which said: “the 2016 devolution deal is not on the table.”

Stephen Morgan MP said:

“I was very disappointed to hear the devolution plans were no longer being considered and even more disappointed that the government hadn’t even told the councils. This scrapping of our bid without notification is a kick in the teeth for Portsmouth and means our city missing out on millions in much-needed funding.

The Solent region has the potential to achieve so much more, but it needs government to finally give us the funding and power we need. The devolution plans were a vehicle for this. If the Government is intent on ignoring them, they must step up with an alternative.

“I’ve been raising questions with Ministers to get to the bottom of this and will continue to lobby Government to back our city with proper funding”.