Austin Macauley 21 September 2015

‘Fairer funding and powers’ will unlock £80bn boost to economy, says LGA

‘Fairer funding and powers’ will unlock £80bn boost to economy, says LGA image

Shifting power and funding to local areas will boost England’s economy by at least £80bn, according to council leaders.

But the Local Government Association (LGA) said this potential would only be realised if Government matches the devolution ambitions of towns, cities and counties and accepts that ‘local people will know best how to spend money and run services’.

Some 34 devolution proposals have been submitted to the Government ahead of the Spending Review. In order to bring greater balance to the economy, said the LGA, these areas need greater freedom to break down the barriers to growth.

In its own submission to the Spending Review, the LGA outlined a series of recommendations including the devolution of more than £60bn of growth, skills and infrastructure funding.

The Spending Review ‘should be about spending smarter, not only about spending less’, it said.

Cllr Gary Porter, LGA chairman, said: ‘Decades of centralised control over funding for local growth have failed to produce a more balanced economy. It is time to spend smarter on infrastructure to get maximum value from every public pound. This starts with a much more effective and efficient approach to investing in local growth.

‘The ability to improve transport links and digital connectivity would allow councils to boost our visitor economy which is worth £60bn to the UK each year and supports one in 10 jobs. An integrated transport system would also lead to less congestion, giving more choice to commuters and consumers and making a huge difference to helping businesses succeed and grow.

‘Devolving education and skills funding would allow them to ensure businesses can access a skilled workforce and avoid growing skills gaps costing almost £500bn in lost growth and lost tax by 2022.

‘Local leaders know their local economies best and hold the key to removing the obstacles limiting the productivity of businesses and holding back local growth. We need the Spending Review to hand us the fairer funding and powers to unleash the full potential of local businesses and economies.’

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Service Manager - Children in Care

Pembrokeshire County Council
£46,514 - £48,412
The successful candidate will need to be able to manage a large number of competing and at times conflicting priorities, whilst... Pembrokeshire (Sir Benfro)
Recuriter: Pembrokeshire County Council

Neighbourhood Services Divisional Manager

Northumberland County Council
You will provide professional and technical advice on all Neighbourhood Services functions. As an effective leader you will coordinate and manage... Northumberland
Recuriter: Northumberland County Council

Service Fulfilment Analyst (IT Technician)

Essex County Council
£24001.0 - £28280 per annum + plus benefits
Please note this is a 6 month, fixed term contract / secondment opportunity. Essex County Council (ECC) is one of the largest and most dynamic local a England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Team Manager - Adoption South Essex

Essex County Council
£46001.0 - £57000.0 per annum
Essex County Council (ECC) is one of the largest and most dynamic local authorities in the UK, serving a population of 2 million residents, and has a England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Social Worker - Family Support & Protection

Essex County Council
We are one of the most effective and progressive Children and Families Service in the country. Our vision is to support families through strengths bas England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how public sector organisations can unlock the hidden value in their land, and why a new approach to construction could help boost the outcomes of the Government’s One Public Estate programme.

The December issue also considers why learnings from ancient cities could provide the key to promoting wellbeing in the modern built environment. It also contains a case study on how the London Borough of Westminster has provided high quality care for the elderly alongside a block of luxury apartments.

Register for your free digital issue