§ Mr. Murphy
asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what consideration was given to a full system of local government when preparing "Northern Ireland: A Framework for Devolution".
§ Mr. Prior
Before presenting the White Paper to Parliament, the Government examined in detail a wide range of means by which greater power and responsibility in running their own affairs could be restored to the people of Northern Ireland. The possibility of giving greater powers to local authorities was considered but I remain of the view that devolved government offers the best prospect of political arrangements acceptable to both sides of the community in Northern Ireland.