Regional role for Smith

Ross Smith has been appointed as regional affairs correspondent of The Journalin Newcastle.

He has already been at the forefront of one of the biggest debates in the North East surrounding the regional assembly referendum.

On the referendum, which will take place in October, Smith said: ” The Journal has really made this a big thing and is trying to be the place where people will come for information.

It will state out exactly what it (the North East Assembly) will and won’t do and how much it will cost. It will tell people how it really is.”

An elected Regional Assembly would set out the framework for employment and the effect it may have on jobs in the area.

Smith continued: “One main issue for the North East is the impact on jobs, so it has been of great interest.

The situation is getting better but it is still a long way from catching up with the South.”

Smith started his career in 2000 when he became a trainee reporter at the Evening Gazette in Teesside. He left the paper having become a senior reporter and then moved to Northern Ireland to work on The Newsletter.

The Journal’s editor, Brian Aitken, said: “Ross’ political knowledge of the North East Assembly Referendum was very impressive.”

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