CAMBRIDGESHIRE AND PETERBOROUGH COMBINED AUTHORITY BECOMES OFFICIAL

devolution team

CAMBRIDGESHIRE AND PETERBOROUGH COMBINED AUTHORITY BECOMES OFFICIAL AS ORDER FORMALLY SIGNED IN PARLIAMENT

The Combined Authority for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is now an official body, after the Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, signed the Order to formally constitute it on Monday 6th March.

The Order was signed after having being debated and agreed in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords and passed without amendment. The official Order can be viewed here: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2017/251/contents/made

The powers which have been devolved from central Government to the Combined Authority include:

  • Control of a new additional £20 million a year funding allocation, over 30 years, to be invested to the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Single Investment Fund, to boost growth.  Recognising the exceptional housing market conditions in Greater Cambridge, Government will provide the Combined Authority with an additional £70m over five years, ring-fenced for Cambridge to meet housing needs.
  • Responsibility for chairing an area-based review of 16+ skills provision
  • Joint responsibility with government and the single Employment and Skills Board to co-design the new National Work and Health Programme designed to focus on those with a health condition or disability and the very long term unemployed
  • Responsibility to develop a more effective joint working with the Department for International Trade to boost trade and investment through agreement of a Joint Export Plan

The first meeting of the new official Combined Authority will take place on Monday 20th March at The Boathouse in Wisbech from 2pm-4pm. A publicity campaign around the election of a Mayor to head up the new Authority, called ‘Our Mayor, Your Vote’ has also been launched by the Department for Communities and Local Government today (6th March).

Powers which have been devolved to the new Mayor as part of the devolution plan include:

  • Responsibility for a multi-year, consolidated and devolved transport budget
  • Responsibility for an identified Key Route Network of local authority roads that will be managed and maintained by the Combined Authority on behalf of the Mayor
  • Powers over strategic planning, control of a £100m housing and infrastructure fund, the responsibility to create a non-statutory spatial framework for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough and to develop with Government

Councillor Robin Howe, Chair of the Combined Authority said: “This is a major milestone in the future of our region and we are thrilled to have been formally constituted by the Secretary of State. The members and officers of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA) are committed and determined to bring real change to the people of this area and we are looking ahead to our first meeting on 20th March, and the Mayoral election on 4th May.”

The first tranche of funding is being made available to the CPCA at the end of March.

The creation of this body was an important part of the deal which was agreed by all seven involved Local Authorities. This serves to ensure that democratically elected representatives of local communities and the Greater Cambridgeshire and Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership (GCGP LEP) are making decisions about how and where the money is spent.