HL Deb 08 July 2003 vol 651 cc25-6WA
Lord Greaves

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether it is the case, as stated in the Boundary Committee for England news release of 17 June, that "If electors vote for a regional assembly next year, new unitary authorities will replace the existing two levels of local government in Cheshire, Cumbria and Lancashire", or whether the Secretary of State will still be able to decide not to go ahead with a regional assembly if the vote is affected by factors such as low turn-out, or different parts of the region voting clearly in different ways. [HL3794]

Lord Rooker

The Government intend that changes to local government would only be implemented if an elected assembly is established.

The referendums on whether to establish an assembly will be advisory, as were the referendums in Scotland, Wales and London. Our expectation is that we will establish an assembly where there is a "yes" vote in a referendum. But we will assess the results of each referendum before deciding to do so.