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MPs relaunch devolution inquiry

A cross-party group of MPs has relaunched an inquiry into devolution in England and how it can help boost local economies.

The housing, communities and local government parliamentary select committee originally launched the inquiry in July 2019, but it was curtailed by the December general election.

The inquiry will examine the impact of devolving increased powers in the cities and regions where deals have been agreed and consider how any benefits can be realised in more areas of the country.

The committee will investigate the roles of directly elected mayors, quality of scrutiny in decision making and public accountability.

It is now looking for written submissions based on the success and scope of the devolution deals already implemented, including the impact on local economies and health economies.

The committee is also looking for written evidence on the geographical spread of existing deals, including to non-metropolitan areas and the impact on adjoining areas and the government’s commitment to devolution.

‘The approach the government has taken is to develop bespoke arrangements for different areas, both in terms of the powers devolved to them and the administrative systems to execute them,’ said committee chair, Clive Betts.

‘We have launched this inquiry to understand the impact of the current approach. Has tailoring devolution to each locality improved decision making, the local economy and public services?

‘Most importantly, we want to discover what opportunities there are for improving outcomes across the country,’ added Mr Betts.

‘Notably in areas such as transport and health where provision doesn’t match existing local government structures, but also in improving the local economy, environment and infrastructure. We will be looking to see how improved devolution can boost cities and regions, and how it can be implemented more quickly.’

More information on the inquiry can be found on the committee’s website.

Photo Credit – TheDigitalArtist (Pixabay)

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