'Return rural powers to UK'
Britain should claw back power from Brussels over farming, fishing and regional regeneration, a group of Conservative MPs are demanding ahead of David Cameron's major speech on Europe tomorrow.
The Fresh Start Project, backed by Tory MPs from across Devon and Cornwall, warns that the European Union "status quo is no longer an option".
Its Manifesto for Change demands five significant revisions to EU treaties, as well as changes to policies that cause deep frustration across the Westcountry.
There is the potential to loosen ties with Brussels over farming and fisheries policies, which have long been the bane of key Westcountry industries, the document states. It also urges that Britain pays for its own regional development policy, rather than paying into a Europe-wide pot and being short-changed when cash is sent back to boost jobs.
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A think-tank last year said Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly would get £207 million more, over seven years, than at present, and Devon £36 million extra.
The Fresh Start Project is fronted by Mr Cameron's former aide George Eustice, the MP for Camborne and Redruth.
He said: "It is now essential that the EU is reformed. When it comes to regional policy and structural funds, Cornwall could receive more financial support if the dead weight costs of EU administration were removed and our farming and fishing industries would benefit from policies which are tailored to our own needs."