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Devolution: Silk Commission recommends more power for Wales

The Silk Commission has ruled that the Welsh Assembly should be given more powers over youth justice and policing as part of the ongoing devolutionary process, reports the BBC.

The Commission, chaired by Paul Silk, a former clerk to the Welsh National Assembly, was convened to look at the issue of greater power and responsibility for Wales.

The Commission's final report has concluded that the system of youth justice and policing should be devolved to the Welsh Assembly, alongside the ability to plan and execute large-scale energy projects.

The Commission has also recommended that the number of assembly members be increased to give the Assembly more credibility and purpose.

This was the second time the Silk Commission had convened. In its first report, the Commission recommended greater financial autonomy for Wales.

This time the Commission concluded that the power-sharing agreement with Westminster was too complex, and that ordinary people were unsure of where power lies.

The Commission also concluded that the institutions of power needed to work better together, and set out a ten-year plan in order to achieve clearer, more effective devolution.

At present the Welsh benefit from a list of powers that have been devolved; however, in the long run the Commission concluded that it should be assumed that all powers are devolved, save those in a 'reserve' list that are retained by Westminster.

"At a time when constitutional issues are high on the agenda in the United Kingdom, we have agreed recommendations that will provide a stable and well-founded devolution settlement fit for the future," said Commissioner chairman, Paul Silk.

The Commission has also recommended that policing powers be moved to be under the control of the Assembly, but that the work of organisations such as the National Crime Agency (NCA) should remain centralised.