Give new Ministers a chance to prove levelling up credentials – The Yorkshire Post says

THE long-held contention of The Yorkshire Post is that all new Ministers deserve a chance to prove themselves – and this applies to Boris Johnson’s latest appointments.

Michael Gove has been given responsibility for levelling up in the Cabinet reshuffle.
Michael Gove has been given responsibility for levelling up in the Cabinet reshuffle.

They can also expect to be judged by this newspaper, and this region, through the prism of levelling up after Mr Johnson cited this as a reason for his shake-up.

And – in fairness – the PM deserves recognition for some of his more significant changes instead of ‘Westminster Village’ gossip about personalities.

Simon Clarke is the new Treasury chief secretary.

This begins with Michael Gove being given the levelling up remit at the reconfigured Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.

His wide experience – and insight from his upbringing in Aberdeen – will be crucial to the country and also Kemi Badenoch, a former Treasury minister, who will have day-to-day policy responsibility.

She will be under no illusion about this region’s expectations after responding to Sheffield City Region mayor Dan Jarvis’s debate on levelling up hours before her new role was formally confirmed.

And, as Nadhim Zahawi begins catch-up work as the new Education Secretary, the significance of the new-look Treasury team should not be under-estimated ahead of next month’s spending review.

Boris Johnson made levelling up a key test of his Cabinet reshuffle.

This follows the appointment of Middlesbrough South MP Simon Clarke as Treasury chief secretary and deputy to Rishi Sunak, the Chancellor and neighbouring Richmond MP. A former local government minister, he is all too aware about the Government’s debt to the fabled ‘red wall’.

As such, the challenge facing this new top team is to bring about the joined-up government, and clarity of purpose, that has held back the country – and levelling up agenda – for too long. Sincerely, we wish them all well, look forward to their forthcoming visits here and also a meaningful dialogue about new policy ideas.

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