The Silk Commission recommends that the Welsh Government should be able to vary income tax rates here in Wales.
The Silk Commission's first report is published today. It's expected to recommend the Welsh Government should have control of some taxes.
An opinion poll for the commission looking at whether the Assembly should get more powers has found support for Welsh taxes.
Welsh Secretary David Jones has welcomed the publication of the Silk Commission's report calling it 'an important report.' As you can see in the video below he told me the UK Government will make a 'very serious assessment' of its 33 recommendations.
Welsh Liberal Democrat leader Kirsty Williams has welcomed the Silk Report as the 'latest step in our long campaign for a federal UK.' She said:
The Welsh Liberal Democrats’ vision for devolution has always included ensuring the National Assembly has the best range of powers available to improve the lives of the people of Wales. The idea that the National Assembly can make laws and spend money, but can't control how much tax is collected has always been an anomaly.
We believe that gaining powers over taxes will make the Welsh government more accountable to the people of Wales and will encourage the government to pursue better polices for growth.
“t is now essential that the UK and Welsh governments work quickly and cooperatively to explore ways to implement the Silk Commission’s significant recommendations. A new Wales bill in the this Parliamentary term is crucial for the implementation of Silk’s recommendations.
We have been arguing for greater devolution for over a century. This is the latest step in our long campaign for a federal UK. It will strengthen Wales and help make a real difference to the lives of people across the country.
The Welsh Conservatives say that, whatever the Silk Commission recommends later, it should make the Welsh Government more accountable. The party's Shadow Finance Minister Paul Davies said:
We look forward to the Silk Commission’s recommendations to make the Welsh Government more accountable for the money it spends. We hope that their package of proposed reforms will finally end the Welsh Government’s excuses culture and deliver fully accountable democratic governance in Wales.
In a speech this evening, the First Minister is expected to outline two big changes he wants to see to the way devolution works. During a lecture to the London School of Economics he's due to reveal what his government will tell the Silk Commission which is looking into the Assembly's powers.
He's expected to call for a move to what's known as a 'reserved powers model' of devolution, similar to the arrangement for Scotland. This would set out what the Welsh Government CAN'T do rather than setting out what it CAN do as is currently the case.
Carwyn Jones will also call for a Welsh judge to be appointed to the Supreme Court. With legislation from Wales being examined by the Supreme court to see if it's lawful, the First Minister is expected to say that it's unfair that Wales isn't represented there.