SUNDERLAND RESIDENTS and businesses being invited to find out more about what a £4.2 billion pound North East devolution deal could mean for them, their city and the region at a special event at City Hall next month.
Local Leaders and Mayors signed up to a provisional deal in January which would unlock over billions of pounds of investment and see additional powers transferred from Whitehall to local people.
Negotiations with government over the devolution deal have now reached the stage where all councils and combined authorities can consider the details, before a final decision is made.
The event in the Council Chamber at City Hall on Friday 10 March will see Patrick Melia, Chief Executive of Sunderland City Council and Head of Paid Service for the North East Combined Authority, and Cllr Graeme Miller, Leader of Sunderland City Council, sharing details of the recently announced deal. There will also be the opportunity for those attending to ask questions.
Councillor Graeme Miller, Leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to find out what the North East Devolution Deal means for you and your community so I’d encourage everyone to come along, find out more and have their say on the implementation of the plans.”
The new deal would see the formation of a new combined authority, headed by an elected ‘Metro’ mayor and cover the LA7 area of Newcastle, Gateshead, North Tyneside, Sunderland, South Tyneside, County Durham and Northumberland.
The deal, which is subject to a governance review and this public consultation, offers a potential £4.2bn of investment into the region, made up of elements including:
- An investment fund of £1.4bn, or £48m a year, to support inclusive economic growth and support the region’s regeneration priorities
- An indicative budget of around £1.8bn, or £60m a year, for adult education and skills – to meet local skills priorities and improve opportunities for residents
- A £900m package of investment to transform the transport system in the North East, with £563m from the City Regional Sustainable Transport Fund, on top of funding already announced for buses and the metro system
- £69m of investment in housing and regeneration, unlocking sites to bring forward new housing and commercial development
It is expected to create 24,000 extra jobs, deliver 70,000 courses per year to give people the skills to get good jobs, and leverage £5.0 billion of private sector investment.
Once established the new authority, covering an area which is home to around 2 million people, will have the power to make decisions on areas such as transport, skills, housing, finance and economic development. The potential deal does not involve any changes to existing councils.
It is expected a Mayoral election would take place in May 2024 and a new authority formed.
The North of Tyne Combined Authority (NTCA), which was set up in 2019 covering Newcastle, North Tyneside and Northumberland, and the separate North East Combined Authority (NECA) covering Sunderland, South Tyneside, Gateshead and Durham would no longer exist.
Details of the event are below:
North East Devolution Deal Consultation Event – Sunderland
Friday 10 March 2.30pm – 4pm
City Hall Plater Way,
Sunderland SR1 3AA
Pre-registration for the event is essential as no walk ins will be allowed on the day.
To register to attend the event visit: here.
You can also find out more about the consultation here: https://www.sunderland.gov.uk/devolution