14/10/2012 Sunday Politics North East and Cumbria


14/10/2012

Andrew Neil and Richard Moss with the latest political news, including an interview with the Conservative Party Chairman Grant Schapps and a debate on the future of Scotland.


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Transcript


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Here in the North East, the rights and wrongs of wonder. MPs react to

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the new football sponsors. Is the region losing up to Scotland in the

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Apology for the loss of subtitles for 2170 seconds

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Hallow and a warm welcome to your local part of the show. Coming up,

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online shopping giant Amazon was going to bring hundreds of jobs to

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North Tyneside but they ended up in Scotland instead. We will be asking

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if we can compete with our economic rivals north of the border. My

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guests will chew over that. I am joined by Nick Brown. You were at

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the Conservative conference when David, and launched his speech.

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think it will strike a chord with voters across the country. People

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who are out there trying to get on with their job and do well for

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their families and build a better future for them, at think the

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message I hear more than anything in the North East is I want better

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for my children. That is the challenge that David Cameron wants

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to crack, to make sure that the framework is there for families to

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get the best out of whatever it is they want to do with their lives.

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He is on your side is in't? If he means it, a has to get that

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practical effect. There are people in this region who want to work but

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cannot find jobs. He has to help the region rebuild the private

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sector economic base so that there are jobs for people who can do them

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and for people who want to do them. Thank you very much. Let us move on

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to one of the biggest changes ever made to policing, the election of

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new police and crime commissioners. For the first time, voters will be

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able to elect the person leading the police forces. They will set

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spending priorities and hire and fire at the Chief Constable. The

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government is standing accused of not doing enough to tell people the

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elections are taking place. On 15th November, you will have the vote.

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You might have spotted this advert on television this week, it is an

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attempt by the Home Office to encourage us to vote on 15th

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November, but how many people know about the next date with the ballot

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box. Do you know what is happening on 15th November? Have not got a

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clue. I know I have not missed anyone's but they. What is

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happening on 15th November? Were do not know. It is the Police and

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Crime Commissioner elections. have heard about it. I did not

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realise it was that day. It is the election for the Commissioner for

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the police. That is right. How much do you know about it? I have not

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seen any flyers or anything. Do you think there has been enough

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information? No. Up knowledge is a little bit hazy, but that is not

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really surprising. There are no free postal drop so we will not get

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information about candidates unless they pay for it themselves. In a

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large rural county like Cumbria, it is difficult if not impossible for

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campaigners to visit every street, so it seems it might not just be

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the weather putting people off next month. Information about the

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selection is mainly based on-line, but if you live in an internet

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blackspot like this area, forming an opinion is a bit tricky. This

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particular election, we cannot get any access to it, we cannot get the

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internet and I must admit I was unaware that there was an election

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because of the lack of news. We just cannot get on the internet to

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access any information about who is up for election or to put our votes

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in or anything. Team voters like this man can phone at the Home

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Office and asked for a candidate information to be posted to them,

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but the information will not be sent out until November and there

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are concerns that the lack of publicity now could have a lasting

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impact on our police forces in years to come. The it is a huge

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change in the dynamic of policing with the public having a stake in

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someone who is holding the police to account. These areas are huge

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compared to my MP's constituencies. If the turnout is low, less than

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one in five people know this is taking place, and if we get an 18%

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turnout, then it really will cause doubt in terms of the hold

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principal of represents a -- of selecting people to represent the

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community. This is your party's flagship policy on policing, but it

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does not have been publicised. agree, I think we need to raise the

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profile so that all our candidates will have the chance to be heard

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and to show why they are standing. Was it a mistake in not to allow

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free postal drops? A I have not had that discussion with the Home

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Office. I think it would be a hugely difficult challenge. Our

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candidate has got 2 million people to talk to so finding ways to do

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that in a short space of time is difficult. The government had

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agreed to fund a free postal drop, it would have been simple. It would.

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There is a case for that. We need to make sure that we can sell the

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whole idea which is accountability and making sure that you can have a

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stake in how you -- your area is being policed. I hope the BBC will

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give us all the opportunity to hear our candidate speak. Here we are.

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You can see the government's., spending �30 million on a mailshot

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does not sound like a good use of money. Most of the candidates are

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from political parties, the parties can fund them count they? They

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cannot, they do not have the money. I would have preferred to see a

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mail drop if we were going to have... Even though it would cost

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�30 million? You either agree with having add directly elected police

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commissioner and the functions of the old police committee being done

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by a single person that the public have chosen, or you do not. If you

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do agree with it, you have to agree that the people will know the

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election is on and understand what it is they are being asked to

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decide and will get some information about it, democracy

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does not come cheap, and other forms of government are more

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expensive. It is even tougher for an independent to try and leaflet

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people. That is more generally true and I think that is a good thing. I

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think the political parties to a good service in choosing a

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candidate that members of the political parties have confidence

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in. A ensure you have an excellent candidate! I am going to move on.

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If turnout, as some predict, is barely 20%, it will be a disastrous

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combination of the whole idea. think there is a real risk, getting

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people out to vote will be a challenge, there is no doubt about

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that. I would have much rather have seen it in May with the local

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elections across the country. I am told that there was a battle within

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the coalition on that and that the November date was the one that was

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fixed. How higher turnout would be acceptable? Assuming our local

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councils are around 20 to 30%, that would be a starting point. I'd will

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certainly be out and about all the time, talking to people and getting

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people to understand what it is about but you cannot talk to 2

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million people individually. There is a challenge there. To get any

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sense that there is it any public interest in these elections? There

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is no real understanding of what the new commissioner will be doing

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and what the powers are and what they can expect. When he or she

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tell police what to do? Can they give instructions to the chief

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Constable? The answer to that is No. The public will say well what do

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they do? You have to explain that they are carrying out the functions

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of the old police committee. The Labour party consulted on a similar

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idea about collecting the whole of the Police Committee and we

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consulted on it and there was a lot of resistance to it. I actually

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think the old way of doing it was probably better. We are stuck it

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that way amid will have to see how the elections go.

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If you want to know more about the elections, there is a way, you need

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to go to this website. They will be a growing amount of information. On

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the show next week, we will have candidates being questioned by

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victims of crime. It is always a fierce battle when

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it comes to attracting jobs and investment to the North East and

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Cumbria and one of our biggest competitors lies just north of the

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border. Scotland has its own parliament and a powerful economic

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development agency, but does it have an unfair advantage? Our

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correspondent reports on the jobs that a region has missed out on. At

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North Tyneside Industrial Estate, plenty of empty offices, it might

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not have been that way. Amazon was considering bringing 900 jobs here,

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instead they went north after Scotland offered a �1.8 million

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grant. A gut reaction at the time was the devastation. A lot of

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people had worked very hard to bring the jobs here but it suddenly

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felt as though our hands were tied and we feel that at the moment the

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way that all of the funding is under way that the economic

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development programmes have been run, Scotland have an unfair of

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vantage which makes it very difficult for us here in the North

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East when we see more happening down into the South East rather

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than here, so we are being pulled in both directions and missing out

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in the middle. The Conservative mayor of North Tyneside was so

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incensed at the decision she took the issue to the top. We have made

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this an issue to government. I have written to the Financial Times I

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have spoken to the ministers myself and we need to have the access to

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government which we do. independent Scotland will

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inevitably get extra economic powers, where does that leave the

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North East? We would have to make a our case to Government and say this

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is what we would like. If that is what you are doing and you are

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going to allow that, then we would like some of that money to give us

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in level playing field. This is what North Tyneside could have had.

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Amazon it came to Dunfermline and the fact that they are here has

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given the local economy is vital boost. In the town centre, you can

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see the differences made, streets are full of shoppers, all told

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Scottish Enterprise funds encouraged Amazon to open centres

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here and in Edinburgh. The result is 1,600 new jobs. We are in the

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middle of the coalfields which have been decimated completely, so it to

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see my home town flourished, albeit in a new type of work, has to be a

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positive thing. But what is positive for Dunfermline and any

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number it might not be for the North East. Overall enterprise and

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economic development here is �184 and Scotland compared to �134 per

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head in the North East. Scotland can offer regional grants worth

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�306 million last year, they are not available in the North East. So

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here at the Scottish Parliament, what do the SNP say? Scotland

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contributes more to the Exchequer than it gets back out. What you are

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talking about really is the success of Scottish development

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internationally, that has been so successful in securing money in

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from abroad. It is a competitive market. It is unfair! All markets

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or unfair. The North East has had a hard times, so has Scotland and it

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has to adapt. The differences are that we have a degree of devolution

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that allows us to do certain things, a degree of economic freedom.

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still some North East office blocks lie empty, increasingly we're after

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the same business as Scotland but are we being given a fair chance to

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compete? Let us get the view of the chair of the development agency

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that was abolished earlier this year. If the North East have the

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financial cloud at this time, could it have persuaded Amazon to come to

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the North East? Quite possibly. Certainly we had a very successful

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time at attracting businesses to this region and you can see them in

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North Tyneside which is why the Amazon jobs would have been, the

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Tesco bank there, you can see the developments of Nissan and the new

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jobs there, so yes we did create a lot of jobs and it is disappointing

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to see them going elsewhere. Presumably when this happened,

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someone will come in with a bigger incentive, there is no way you

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could have guaranteed this? And so that the not. This is a very

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competitive market. We are missing the point a little bit. It is a

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global market, international investors are looking at a series

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of different locations. The issue we have here is not that Scotland

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is doing what we would have done in exactly the same circumstances, it

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is the fact that the UK now actually has a view that all

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they're interested in is bringing jobs to the UK and anywhere in the

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UK. There is no specific mandate to create jobs in the region. As long

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as they hid their numbers of new jobs in the UK, they get a pat on

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the head. What we need to have is some form of regional influence

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into the UK system. Let us focus on Scotland, how well to think the

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region is equipped to compete with Scotland? The Enterprise Agency is

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very successful as was the one and the North East. What we have put in

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place in the UK are a local enterprise partnerships which we

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support holy. The problem is that they are just a really getting

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started. They are trying to find their feet and raise funds and we

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have got a difficult time here, where what is happening at the

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moment it would not have happened if there had been something in its

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place, it is now a two year since the election and we are now only

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really getting our act together in the North East. Thank you. There is

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a lot of justifiable anger here. Hundreds of jobs heading to

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Scotland that would have come here if you're government had not

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abolished the regional development agency potentially. A do not think

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that is how you should look at it. The private sector is growing and

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we are seeing new jobs. What we have seen and we had been very

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effective in getting this influence is to get two really good

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enterprise zones here which I hope in the next five to ten years will

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see a huge influx of private investment into the North East.

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you St that those partnerships will be able to compete with his big

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Scottish Development Agency and stop something like Amazon

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happening again? I have that issue with Manchester and the Midlands

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and we will always be the relatively small region fighting

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for business. I believe our transport infrastructure is really

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poor compared to some of the other regions and we have to fight hard

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to make sure that the Department of Transport understands that and

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starts to see that we need better investment in this region. This is

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the kind of competition for jobs that happens all the time.

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Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. That is true of course, but

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we are not all at the same starting point. The enterprise zones and the

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new partnership arrangements that the coalition government have

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brought in just do not have the resources behind them to make a

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sufficiently persuasive countervailing offer to the sort of

:54:29.:54:39.
:54:39.:54:39.

things... You spend all the money! If the current financial crisis

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started as a debt crisis in the United States and went around the

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world... And there is still a shortage of money. A you could not

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fund it as she did in the past. You could fund a countervailing force

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to the natural market forces that shot economies to the centre and in

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the case of our country, that is London and the South East. It is

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wrong to highlight Scotland as the competition when we had our own

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well-funded Development Agency and a Minister, me, that could punch

:55:13.:55:15.

our weight right at the heart of government. We were able to get our

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case put forward with the same effectiveness as the Scots and

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Welsh and Northern Ireland. interviewed Ed Miliband and he

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would not commit to recreating a development agency saw it is not

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necessarily that Labour would have that solution. I am happy for you

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to get Ed Miliband on your programme and ask him to set out

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his policy. I tried to! I think the development agency worked well for

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the region and there is a strong case for this region having a

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regional Minister and his own development agency with its own

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dedicated funds and that would enable us to make their offers to

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Scotland. It is true that be the private sector companies make their

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own choices, but they do want to see that there is a regional offer

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if they come in and create jobs and make this their home. I asked the

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Prime Minister about this and he backed up what my guess just said.

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As the Prime Minister, that is very much his position. The should also

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take a look that the economy here. We must make sure we develop a

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clear voice. I am pleased that Lord Adonis set up his commission to

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bring together that important strategic Messaging from the North

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East which the Prime Minister is keen to hear about. We want to see

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what we consider as a region is the most important thing. He does not

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want a list of begging letters, he wants to know what the North East

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needs to be at the top of its game. I think he believes that he has

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supported and his department had supported quite a lot of

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development into the private sector and he is open to hearing what we

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want for the North East so we can be as good as Manchester or better

:57:03.:57:06.

a week ago the more financially secure of us have probably never

:57:06.:57:12.

heard of Wonga, now people seem to talk of little else.

:57:12.:57:22.
:57:22.:57:27.

He was a look at the rest of the news. Ministers say it is giving

:57:27.:57:31.

parents more choice, but the National Union of Teachers and the

:57:31.:57:33.

North East say setting up a free schools is creating too many

:57:33.:57:38.

surplus places and an MP has pledged to will not set foot inside

:57:38.:57:42.

Newcastle United's ground after it signed a sponsorship deal with

:57:42.:57:52.
:57:52.:57:53.

payday loans company Wonga. He says it is a disgrace. It is a Wonga, it

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is based on the millions made from people in our region who are

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desperate and have not got the money to get into St James' Park

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let alone anything else. Shutting this company with the loss of 500

:58:07.:58:12.

jobs has done little to help the environment, that Tory MPs said

:58:12.:58:15.

similar plans are being set up in Canada were emissions will be just

:58:16.:58:25.
:58:26.:58:33.

as high. It is a long way, but is not a... Let us talk about Wonga,

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would you go and what Newcastle United after they are sponsored by

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then? I do not go often, but it would not stop me from going. I do

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share the reservations about the arrangement, ultimately it is two

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private sector organisations and sponsorship is very important to

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football. We understand that, but Wonga's interest rates, over 40,000

:58:57.:59:07.
:59:07.:59:07.

%, if you annualised a, it is double the rates of other companies.

:59:07.:59:12.

The fact that they can afford to sponsor a Newcastle United show the

:59:12.:59:18.

returns they are making. Ahead huge reservations about the way they are

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doing it, charging very large sums of money to people who are pretty

:59:22.:59:27.

desperate. And I am sure they would defend themselves if they were here.

:59:27.:59:32.

Is he right to be concerned? Should football clubs be thinking about

:59:32.:59:37.

the community? I share the reservations with any organisation

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that is using sponsorship through a business like that, but we do not

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use smoking companies any more to advertise racing, but alcohol

:59:45.:59:48.

companies are still sponsoring things, I do not think there is a

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moral question. I am pleased that investment will go into the

:59:52.:59:56.

football academy. Newcastle United and the North East will benefit

:59:56.:00:00.

from that, so there is an upside. My mother-in-law is a football

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fanatic and she is not impressed. I will just share that. For me, we

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should be seeing the support for credit unions and those sorts of

:00:09.:00:13.

things were people who have financial problems can be supported.

:00:13.:00:20.

Thank you very much. This week's programme was recorded before the

:00:20.:00:24.

announcement that Stuart Bell had died aged 74 from pancreatic cancer.

:00:24.:00:28.

He had been Middlesbrough's MP for 29 years, paying tribute to the

:00:28.:00:33.

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