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Historic devolution deal proposals signed today

2:41 pm, Monday, 27th November 2023 - 3 months ago

Devolution

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Levelling Up Jacob Young met the three Greater Lincolnshire Council Leaders today as they united to sign the greater county’s proposed devolution deal.

Mr Young (second left) joined North East Lincolnshire Council Leader Cllr Philip Jackson (right), along with Cllr Martin Hill OBE from Lincolnshire County Council (left) and Cllr Rob Waltham MBE from North Lincolnshire for the ceremonial event held at Scunthorpe’s 20-21 Visual Arts Centre.

Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Levelling Up Jacob Young said: “It’s fantastic to be here in Lincolnshire today announcing our devolution deal for the Greater Lincolnshire area. It comes alongside extra funding, more powers and a new directly elected mayor for the Lincolnshire area. I know it’s going to have a dramatic impact across the whole of the Lincolnshire County.”

North East Lincolnshire Council Leader, Cllr Philip Jackson, said: “This is a deal which will be fantastic for Greater Lincolnshire, from the Humber down to the Wash. It gives us a lot of extra spending power over the next 30 years, £24million a year for the next 30 years, and some additional money straight away that we can spend on our priority areas. But importantly it will give us extra powers as well to make sure that we can direct that spending in areas that we know local people need it, around infrastructure, around transport, around housing, flood defence and various other areas where we know we’ve got need in the county. We know it’s going to be great for us in determining the future direction of Greater Lincolnshire.”

Following the speeches and with fellow councillors and dignitaries looking, the agreed Greater Lincolnshire proposed deal was then signed. This formality comes ahead of the next stage of the process, which are the meetings of the Full Councils.

Councillors in North East Lincolnshire will hear more details of the proposed Greater Lincolnshire Devolution deal when they attend a meeting of the Full Council on Thursday, 30 November, with full council meetings of Lincolnshire County Council and North Lincolnshire Council occurring in the following days.

The paper, asking elected members to vote on the proposal and that it goes out to public consultation, detail how devolution provides ‘an opportunity to seek the transfer of a range of powers and budgets from Government that can be targeted to local need, used to boost growth in the local economy and level up communities’.

It further outlines how devolution is moving important choices about local investment, infrastructure, and training from Government to local decision makers and how such arrangements are already in place in core cities like Manchester, Sheffield and Birmingham and more recently new devolution deals have been developed with neighbouring areas including Nottinghamshire, Norfolk, East Riding and Kingston upon Hull.

With councils and businesses across Greater Lincolnshire having a ‘strong history’ of working together, it says devolution is now needed to achieve ‘strategic change’ for the people who live and work in the greater county.

“Councils in Greater Lincolnshire have been working collaboratively to secure devolution for our area, to deliver the leadership required to address unique long-term challenges across Greater Lincolnshire, maximise the area’s opportunities to deliver future prosperity and to ensure that Greater Lincolnshire’s residents and businesses do not miss out or fall behind other areas,” it adds.

As already reported, it was announced in the Autumn statement that Government had agreed the proposed devolution deal, which – as the Full Council report goes on to detail – offers:

  • A Mayoral Investment Fund of £24 million per annum for 30 years to invest in infrastructure and skills development totalling £720m.
  • A one off £28.4m capital investment in Greater Lincolnshire’s priorities.
  • £2m capacity funding over 3 years.
  • £1m skills for job funding.
  • Local control over the Adult Education Budget from 2026.
  • A consolidated, multi-year transport fund, providing increased financial certainty.

A ‘stronger voice’ regionally and nationally is also highlighted. As has already been reported, this voice will make the case for more investment on Greater Lincolnshire’s priorities including the UK Food Valley, renewable energy, ports and logistics, and delivering on the potential of the area from the Humber to The Wash.

The formal process towards adoption of the deal will only begin when the Full Councils of North East Lincolnshire, North East Lincolnshire and Lincolnshire County vote – with North East Lincolnshire the first to do so on Thursday.

The proposal will then go out for eight-weeks of public consultation with Greater Lincolnshire’s 1.1m residents, before more formal meetings to assess the consultation results and put a recommendation to the Government.

The result of that, if all is favourable, will see a Mayoral Combined County Authority, (MCCA) formed with the election for a Mayor in May 2025.

More details about public consultation will be available and dependent on the Full Council meetings.

Devolution for Greater Lincolnshire: your questions answered at www.nelc.gov.uk/devolution

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