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Tories to press ahead with 'English votes for English laws'

The Leader of the House William Hague has thrown down the gauntlet to Labour over English devolution.

After a meeting at Chequers between the Prime Minister and backbench MPs, it emerged that the Tories plan to press ahead with what were said to be "robust proposals" to give English MPs control over English laws.

"If other parties make it impossible to deal with these issues in tandem, " Mr Hague warned.

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Council chief: 'Devolution genie is out of the bottle'

The head of the Local Government Association, which represents councils in England and Wales, has said "the devolution genie is out of the bottle" following the Scottish referendum.

David Sparks said any new powers that Scotland receives "must be given to local areas in England and Wales", adding: "The appetite for devolution does not stop at the border and the rest of the UK will not be content to settle for the status quo."

The LGA called for an urgent meeting of a Constitutional Convention and called on the Government to set out a timetable for devolution across England, with a pledge for immediate new powers to areas which are ready for them.

The Scottish referendum campaign has shown that public trust in the old ways of central control has been shattered beyond repair. That is why establishing an English Parliament, with MPs still calling the shots, would not represent true devolution.

It is locally elected councils - driving their local economies through devolved taxation and greater control over council tax and business rates - which can satisfy the desire of people in England to have greater say in the places they live and work.

– Local Government Association chairman David Sparks

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