On Thursday 26 November, Kevan spoke in a Westminster Hall debate on North East devolution where he raised a number of concerns about the plans for devolution in the region.

Kevan said, “If we were having a serious debate about devolution, we would have had a far clearer, worked-out policy and a debate within the region. Frankly, the debate in the region has been pathetic. Devolution has been sold by some of its proponents as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the region, as though it is akin to selling sofas or other bargains in the Christmas sales, but if people ask questions about it, they are treated as though they are somehow anti the region or anti-business and are holding back the region, which I find insulting.

“Those individual councils and others who oppose the devolution settlement and the mayoral system that, whatever the Government say, has been imposed as part of the deal have a great track record of working closely with business in the north-east; they are not anti-business.”

You can read Kevan’s full speech, and the rest of the debate, here: http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201516/cmhansrd/cm151126/halltext/151126h0001.htm#15112636000170