This is the most understated section in the Power Inquiry, and I have omitted number 11 as it deals with our membership of the EU, which is simply no longer relevant.
The excuse most often made for the shape of British government - a highly centralised State that determines 96% of all taxes, a lower tier of government tasked with the rationing decisions of a proportion of those taxes on local services (determined centrally), with the poorest rate of democratic representation in the developed world - is that it is both efficient and effective. Utter spew.
The central power grab is just a century old, born of emergency war powers that were never reversed. Before 1914 just about everything - water, power, gas, health, hospitals, almshouses, welfare, roads, lighting, transport, planning, public health, licencing, education and policing - was taxed, designed and managed locally by democratically accountable members and bodies.
Arguments about economies of scale - that a public body can only economically collect waste, police the streets, licence building and so on at a certain size is an absolute fallacy. My own small gemeinde here provides 2,500 souls with water and sewerage at a quarter of the cost I paid in London for those services. Look back in this blog and you will find a similar analysis of the small town of Vail in the US, which maintains its own police force in addition to providing all local services. Cheaply. There is no objective, scientific reason for the shape of local government in the UK except for the convenience it offers to its masters in Whitehall.
Once you accept that arguments for scale are pretty much spurious, and accept also that all public administrative functions should be carried out at the lowest level possible in order to maximise democratic control and accountability, you cannot excuse the gross insult to democracy that exists in the British structures.
As we all know, in Switzerland, functions are split roughly into thirds between the central State - including the army, air traffic control, law and justice and suchlike, functions that can only be done nationally - and the Cantons and Municipalities. Each tier has independence in levying and collecting tax for its functions. If the UK did the same, we could shrink Whitehall and the Treasury by two-thirds and remove an irrelevant burden from the hands of our national legislature and its unaccountable NDPBs and fake charities.
The phrase 'postcode lottery' is a quite brilliant con perpetuated by globalist sympathisers seeking to impose a homogeneous system of taxation, spending and services across all lands and peoples. UK Corporation Tax lower than France's? Postcode lottery! they cry - the EU must impose a harmonised rate of CT across the Union, to make things 'fair'. It's rubbish. It's fallacious. It's risible nonsense. And yet it's one of the excuses that Whitehall globalists make to justify their own existence. If my gemeinde, unlike others in the area, wants to impose a local and punitive tax on certain types of commercial activities that its voters find undesirable, it's not a postcode lottery, it's democracy.
The 'Big bang' decentralism required in the UK to free our nation from the malign grasp of the Whitehall authoritarian central Statists is far, far beyond the feeble recommendations made in 'Power', but here they are nonetheless:
Recommendation 6: There should be an unambiguous process of decentralisation of powers from central to local government.
Recommendation 7: A Concordat between central and local government setting out their respective powers.
Recommendation 8: Local Government to have enhanced powers to raise taxes and administer its own finances
Recommendation 9: Government should commission an independent mapping of quangos and other public bodies to clarify and renew lines of accountability between elected and unelected authority.
Recommendation 10: Ministerial meetings with representatives of business including lobbyists to be logged and listed on a monthly basis.