There have been hints that a decision on tax and borrowing powers for Wales was close, but don't hold your breath.
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.
Professor Noel Lloyd, a member of the Silk Commission, says that even though this opinion poll shows clear support, it won't forget that there are many 'shades of opinion' on devolution.
Most people backed the Assembly retaining the powers it has in six key areas: tourism, agriculture, housing, roads, education and health. But a significant minority want to see responsibility for health and education returned to London.
20% said education should be the responsibility of the UK Parliament and Government and 27% said the NHS should be administered from London. The survey points out that these are two areas which received most media coverage.
The poll for the Silk Commission also finds that people living here in Wales are more likely to trust the Assembly to act in the best interests of Wales than they are the UK Parliament. These are the results for the Assembly:
- 29% - Trust it a great deal
- 50% - Trust it to some extent
- 13% - Don't trust it that much
- 7% - Don't trust it at all
In contrast, just 37% of respondents said they trusted the UK Parliament to act in the best interests of Wales. These are the results:
- 3% - Trust it a great deal
- 34% -Trust it to some extent
- 39% - Don't trust it that much
- 29% - Don't trust it at all
A majority of people support an increase in the powers of the Welsh Assembly, an opinion poll has found. The survey was carried out by Beaufort Research for the Silk Commission on further devolution.
62% of those questioned said they'd want to see more power and responsibility transferred to the Assembly. That figure brings together those who want more devolution (53%) and those (9%) who want independence.
- 53% want to see more the Assembly given enhanced powers
- 9% think Wales should be independent
- 3% believe the Assembly should have fewer powers
- 9% want to see it abolished
The Welsh arms of both the Federation of Master Builders and the Confederation of British Industry have said that they will support the devoltion of Stamp Duty to the Welsh Government when the UK Government consults on the idea.
– Federation of Master Builders Cymru Director Richard Jenkins
We welcome the Treasury’s intention to seek the views of business on this matter and therefore will make our policy clear. We urge UK Ministers to respond positively to the recommendation to devolve Stamp Duty made by the Silk Commission. Our view is that Stamp Duty Land Tax should be devolved to the Welsh Government as a matter of urgency. The Welsh housing industry is in a poor state of health and Stamp Duty could be used to creatively to support the sector, and to offset the accumulated costs of development, which are set to rise.
– CBI Wales Director Emma Watkins
The views of the CBI are very clear in supporting the devolution of stamp duty. If used effectively, devolving and reforming stamp duty could be used as a tool for growth, stimulating housebuilding and supporting home buyers. We will engage with the Treasury over the summer and make the views of business known. The lack of certainty and clarity on a deadline for Silk is not helping business - both those in Wales and those looking to invest. CBI will continue to engage with all parties for a swift resolution, in the interests of driving forward the economy - and growth.
Welsh Finance Minister Jane Hutt says she's putting her "trust and confidence" in today's statement from the Treasury that the UK Government will devolve tax-raising and borrowing powers to the Welsh Government.
– Finance Minister Jane Hutt AM
It's a great step forward, it is a recognition and as Danny Alexander, the Chief Secretary [to the Treasury] said, the final step to enable us to get those economic and financial levers to help us boost our economy. Today it is clear that the UK Government and the Treasury in particular wants to devolve this. Let's get over this little step in terms of consultation and then let's get the announcement.
Ms Hutt said she was sure that the consultation on whether to devolve Stamp Duty, which is levied on property sales, would lead to that tax being included.
We have already consulted on stamp on Stamp Duty ... [the housebuilders] were up for both -devolve and reform Stamp Duty.
Welsh Secretary David Jones rejects the accusation that the consultation on stamp duty is a delaying tactic saying that 'this is a very serious piece of devolution and it's important we get it right.'
Plaid Cymru's Treasury Spokesman Jonathan Edwards says the consultation on stamp duty will 'only cause further delay and .. may be seen as a cynical move to halt the transfer of power.'
When looking at best practice of decentralising taxation around the world, property taxation is seen as one of the most appropriate taxes to devolve. The Secretary of State’s anxiety flies in the face of global evidence.
It’s important to note that the Silk Commission had consulted widely in coming up with these recommendations, why is the UK Government second-guessing the careful work of the Commission?
– Jonathan Edwards MP, Plaid Cymru
It’s obvious that all three London parties are deeply split on the issue of financial powers for Wales, and the dithering of the Labour Government over whether it wants the full Silk package or only part of it hasn’t helped matters.
Finance Minister Jane Hutt has issued this statement following the news that the UK Government will consult businesses on the likely effects of transferring stamp duty to the Welsh Government.
The recognition that the Welsh Government should have early access to borrowing powers for the M4 is welcome news, however we are impatient for a full response to Silk which was first due in the Spring.
As a result of our negotiations I fully expect any issues to be resolved in September which is crucial if we are to meet the timetable for draft legislation to be published in the Autumn.
The issue of stamp duty has been looked at exhaustively. The Holtham Commission, Silk Commission and Calman Commission have all recommended its devolution.
– Jane Hutt AM, Finance Minister
The Welsh Government held an event with the construction industry and business leaders earlier this year to gain their views and there was a clear sense of agreement that stamp duty should be devolved and reformed.
We need taxes such as stamp duty devolved so we can boost house building, create jobs, backing the Welsh economy and continue to deliver our priorities for Wales.
We now expect the UK Government to deliver on Silk, for Wales. We believe rapid progress on this issue would provide a genuine ‘win win’ for both the UK Government, Welsh Government and crucially the people of Wales.