Hampshire County Council leader calls for devolution rethink following Brexit

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The leader of Hampshire County Council has warned the government not to implement a devolution deal for the Solent area following the UK’s exit from the EU.

Councillor Roy Perry has said in a letter to prime minister David Cameron and to members of his cabinet that a devolution deal for the area which includes Portsmouth, Fareham and Gosport ‘would risk damaging public investment in essential transport schemes.’

He said: ‘The closure of the referendum campaign brings an ideal opportunity to reset the agenda on devolution and refocus on what we’re actually trying to deliver - strengthened local democracy, sustainable local growth and reformed public services.

‘We shouldn’t be spending time and resources on these disputes at a time of such uncertainty for the future of the economy and public services’.

The county council is planning a public consultation for residents to give their views on devolution later this month with the results set to be published later this year.