St David's Day Agreement


The St David's Day Agreement, also known as the St David's Command Paper, is a command paper which set out the proposals of the UK coalition government. It was published in the command paper Powers for a purpose: Towards a lasting devolution settlement for Walesr. The document was announced on 27 February 2015, by Prime Minister David Cameron and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.

David Cameron (left) and Nick Clegg (right) announcing the St David's Day Agreement at the Millennium Stadium

Recommendations


The document's recommendations include:

  • Energy projects up to 350 megawatts should be decided by the Welsh Government. This would include most offshore wind farms and renewable technologies to harness tidal power and fracking.
  • The National Assembly should have powers over the development of ports to improve Wales' transport infrastructure.
  • The National Assembly should have the power to lower the voting age to 16 for Assembly elections. The Assembly already had the power to lower the voting age to 16 for a referendum on devolving income tax powers.
  • All powers relating to National Assembly and local government elections should be devolved. This includes deciding the electoral system, the number of constituencies, their boundaries, the timing of elections, and the conduct of the elections themselves.
  • The Welsh Government should have the power to appoint one member of the Ofcom board to represent Welsh interests.
  • A review should be carried out of Air Passenger Duty which could open the door for it to be devolved to Wales.
  • The agreement says the Welsh Government should be able to set its own speed limits and transport regulation for ports, taxis and buses.[1]

The majority of the recommendations of the second report by the Commission on Devolution in Wales, commonly known as Silk II, have gone into this command paper.[1]

Criticism


The command paper was criticised by the Welsh Government for "not [treating Wales] with the same respect as being afforded to Scotland".[2] Plaid Cymru, a Welsh nationalist party, called the recommendations "3rd rate devolution".[3]

See also


Notes


  1. "Landmark funding announcement and new powers for Wales in St David's Day Agreement". Gov.uk. Retrieved 2015-03-29. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. First Minister of Wales [@fmwales] (February 27, 2015). "However, Wales is still not being treated with the same respect as that being afforded to Scotland #devolution" (Tweet) via Twitter.
  3. Plaid Cymru [@Plaid_Cymru] (February 27, 2015). "'I've heard no good argument as to why Wales should accept 3rd rate devolution' @LeanneWood #Ge2015 #Plaid15" (Tweet) via Twitter. line feed character in |title= at position 81 (help)