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Local Government: Urban Areas

Volume 494: debated on Monday 22 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) if he will take steps to seek the views of those living in the most deprived areas when examining the merits of formal city regional governance in conurbations outside London; (280595)

(2) whether he plans to propose the introduction of formal city regional governance in conurbations outside London.

Part 6 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Bill, which is currently being considered by the House, provides the legislative basis for economic prosperity boards and combined authorities. These bodies will provide a means for local authorities to pool functions and manage joint activity on economic development and regeneration as well as, in the case of combined authorities, transport issues. They will be entirely voluntary for local authorities and each council will have to give its express consent before it becomes part of one of these bodies.

Local authorities that are considering setting up an economic prosperity board or combined authority will be expected to consult widely when drawing up their scheme for submission to the Secretary of State.