Sion Jones says:If the Conservatives amend the Wales Bill now, to remove the lockstep, that could send a strong signal to Scottish voters that they are committed to the income tax proposals put forward for Scotland by the Strathclyde Commission today. Lack of trust in what a future UK Government will do in the event of a No vote in the Scottish referendum is an issue that the unionist parties need to address.
Plaid Cymru Treasury spokesman Jonathan Edwards said:
“The Tory proposals for Scotland are for full income tax devolution for Scotland and go way beyond the tax-sharing arrangement between the Welsh and UK governments proposed in the Wales Bill. Full income tax devolution would give the Scottish Government maximum flexibility to boost their economy and achieve their social justice objectives. It would also increase borrowing capacity to invest in infrastructure creating jobs and growth.”
“Whatever the result of the independence referendum in Scotland it seems that the Scottish Government will have far more job creating powers at their disposal. Wales must not be left behind and a first step would be for the Wales Bill to be amended in the House of Lords to remove the lockstep mechanism currently included in the Bill.”
But its the mighty Wings over Scotland who put the whole explain the Tories seemingly keenness over devolving Tax powers.
1. The Tories never expect to control the Scottish Parliament. They expect, quite reasonably given that Scotland hasn’t voted Tory for almost 60 years, that for the forseeable future it will always be controlled by either the SNP or Labour.
2. Therefore, it’s not in the Conservatives’ interests to ever do anything to make it stronger, because all it’s ever likely to do is get in the way of a Tory government at Westminster and cause trouble.
3. Therefore, anything the Tories actually propose will in fact be designed to have the effect of weakening the Scottish Parliament so that it can be less of thorn in Westminster’s side. This isn’t particularly evil, just sensible, pragmatic politics.
(In this particular case, the mechanism of weakening is to impose a large burden of additional and pointless bureaucracy in order to administer an abstract and unusable “power” and put extra strain on the Scottish budget, limiting its ability to introduce or maintain social-democratic policies at odds with Tory ideology.)
I wonder how devolving powers even with the lockstep was removed how much real lleway DevoMax will give a Scottish Parliament to adjust Tax to Scottish circumstances .
Don't get me wrong . There must be a time that a grown up legislature starts working on its own revenue but one wonders whether with out an almost Federal structure this can work ,
Having Tax raising powers without an increase in Powers in virtually every other sector probably means it will hardly be used.