CFER chair George Morran said:
'CFER believes the white paper provides a starting point for the people in each region to express their views on the direction and pace at which they wish to move forward. We will use the time between now and any legislation to encourage as many people as possible to be involved in this consultation, and to lobby government to strengthen these proposals. We have no doubt that when referendums on devolution to the English regions are held they will be won.'
CFER has said to government that our ambition is that the five underlying principles for English devolution should be:
* A multi-speed approach with individual regions going at their own pace
* A flexible approach with that allows variations between regions to suit their unique needs
* A participative approach ensuring the widest participation in the process of change
* An evolutionary approach that leaves the door open to intelligent development of the new assemblies beyond the initial legislation and
* An inclusive approach that ensure the new assemblies are beacons of best practice for inclusive and participatory democracy
CFER believes that the white paper allows for the possibility for that ambition to be met.