Latest News | 7 September 2022

Government opens door for £1.14bn devolution deal

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The Government has confirmed that a £1.14 billion devolution deal is on offer for the East Midlands, which would cover Derby and Derbyshire.

The deal would provide the region with a guaranteed income stream of £38 million per year over a 30-year period – and would cover an area home to around 2.2 million people.

All four city and county council leaders in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Derby, and Nottingham have signed up to work on the devolution deal with the Government.

Recently, the leaders, including Councillor Chris Poulter, leader of Derby City Council, met with Greg Clark, who up until the appointment of Liz Truss as the new Prime Minister this week was Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, at Rolls-Royce in Derby, to agree the devolution deal in principle.

In a joint statement, they said: “We welcome the £1.14 billion devolution deal from the Government on offer for our region. It’s fantastic news.

“We want to make the most of every penny so this can be used to make a real difference to people’s lives.”

As well as the £1.14 billion, the devolution deal includes an extra £16 million for new homes on brownfield land, and control over a range of budgets like the adult education.

It would also mean a new elected regional mayor, like those in other areas such as the West Midlands and Greater Manchester, who would represent both cities and counties.

Local councils would all continue to exist as they do now and would still be responsible for most public services in the area.

The mayor and combined authority would focus on wider issues like transport, regeneration, and employment across both cities and counties.

The councils will now work on the details of the deal – and each one will take a report to approve a more detailed proposal for a consultation later this year, so that residents, businesses, and other organisations can have their say.

In the joint statement, the leaders said: “As leaders, we have all fought for a fairer share for our cities and counties, and a bigger voice for our area, to give us the clout and the influence we deserve, and to help us live up to our full potential.

“This deal would help make that a reality, creating more and better jobs through greater investment in our area, with increased economic growth, better transport, housing, skills training, and an enhanced greener environment, as we move towards being carbon neutral.

“These are what we all want to see, and we will work together for the common good of the East Midlands.

“We haven’t always had the same level of funding or influence as other areas, which has held us back. This is a golden opportunity to change that and put the power to do so in our own hands.

“There is a lot still to be agreed, and this is the beginning of the journey, not the end. We’re determined to build on this deal over time, as other areas have done.”

If the devolution deal is formally approved, the Government will pass legislation bringing a new combined authority for the East Midlands into existence.

The first election for a regional mayor for Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham, and Nottinghamshire, would then be in May 2024.

Devolution is backed by a number of organisations and key employers across the region, including East Midlands Chamber of Commerce, the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, the University of Derby and Rolls-Royce.

Mark Gregory, from Rolls-Royce’s general counsel, said: “Rolls-Royce has based itself in the region for over a century.

“We have more than 12,000 colleagues at four sites across Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, work with over 500 businesses here and partner with both major universities to ensure we remain at the forefront of technological innovation.

“We welcome the new combined authority and look forward to the focused investment, regional growth and wider opportunities this new partnership brings.”

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