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Scarborough Borough Council Scrapped Under Devolution Plans?

Scarborough Borough Council Scrapped Under Devolution Plans?

Published by Karen Liu with contributions by Local Democracy Reporter Carl Gavaghan at 1:58pm 13th July 2020. (Updated at 2:03pm 13th July 2020)

Scarborough Borough Council COULD be scrapped under plans for a devolution deal in York and North Yorkshire.

It is holding advanced talks with the County Council and other authorities to bring power on a local level.

The county’s seven district councils, which includes Scarborough Borough Council, have been told they must go if North Yorkshire wants devolution, which would bring more powers and spending potential to the county.

Following a meeting with Local Government Minister Simon Clarke last week it is proposed to create one or two combined authorities under a metro Mayor for the county in 2022.

The size of the new authority, which would also include York, is still to be decided but the combined 800,000 people living in North Yorkshire and York is considered too large for one stand-alone council.

Councils in the area have until September to submit their proposals for what the future unitary authority could look like.

Steve Siddons, Leader of Scarborough Borough Council, said:

"We would support that. I would certainly support that and I think that makes far more sense than the complex system that we have in place.

The services would still be provided locally. It would bring more money into the local economy, it means that we'll have more control over economic regeneration, transport and over infrastructure."

Steve has been speaking to Yorkshire Coast Radio's Karen Liu:


RELATED STORIES: Talks Being Held For North Yorkshire Devolution Deal

Under the present system, North Yorkshire County Council is responsible for education, highways, social care and transport. The seven district councils are responsible for the majority of planning matters, licensing, bin collections and council tax collections.

York has one council to run all services.

Any of the councils involved in the process can submit a proposal to the government to be considered.

The government’s intention is to make the changes from April 2022, with Mayoral elections taking place in May alongside elections to the new unitary authority or authorities.

If the devolution plan moves forward the county council elections scheduled for next year would be cancelled, as likely would be the elections for the Police, Crime and Fire Commissioner as those responsibilities are presumed to rest with the new elected Mayor.

The government hopes to put the proposals for the new authority structure before Parliament in the new year.

The devolution progress has also been welcomed by Cllr Carl Les, the Conservative Leader of North Yorkshire County Council.

In a statement, Cllr Les said:

“In North Yorkshire we support devolution and see it as an important mechanism to release more funding which will greatly strengthen our economic regeneration and recovery – particularly in the context of emerging from the human and financial impact of Covid-19.

We have always been clear that key decisions about our county, which impact on our people and communities, are most effective when made here. We would therefore welcome more money and powers to move North Yorkshire’s economy and infrastructure forward in this way.

Linking strong devolution deals to unitary status is the challenge Government has issued. We are at a critical time for our county and region and can see the positive opportunities to simplify structures and access to high quality services, strengthen our economy and voice nationally to lobby for greater investment and save significant sums of money.

These are important to the people we serve and we will consider this more in the days ahead.”

Comments

There are 4 comments on this page.

zara, on 13th July 2020 6:13pm
Councillor Siddons has had his money out of the council and is now happy to hand the reins over to a regional authority. It is not bringing power to a local level it is taking it away from that level. You can bet your sweet a... that the smaller areas will suffer financially from this. I may not approve of our councils but they are at least local and can be held accountable locally. Once it becomes centralised in York(and it will be) the other areas will just be treated as a cash cow. As for the position of Mayor, is that likely to be someone from North Yorkshire or some ex politician foisted on the county?
Diddy dave, on 13th July 2020 8:03pm
agree totally sbc is no good as it is but it is local and it would def need a local mayor/ess
Karl Doab, on 13th July 2020 8:27pm
Devolution is a government project. How is Siddons personally to blame for something the government wants to push through.
Tangoe, on 14th July 2020 9:51am
I note York is consulting with their residents "Given the potential scale of funding that a devolution deal could unlock for York, local residents and businesses are being invited to find out more at https://www.york.gov.uk/devolution, and share their thoughts via Our Big Conversation at https://www.york.gov.uk/OurBigConversation. There will also be a Facebook live ‘Ask the Leaders’ event on Thursday from 5 to 6pm, where a panel will answer questions about York’s ‘Big Conversation’ consultation, and what devolution might mean for York’s future." When will SBC do this?
How can a region with two National Parks, a small city and a very rural economy attract enough investment? I totally agree we need to improve the local management of this area, Whitby at present has three Councils – NYCC, SBC & WTC, with the North York’s Moors National Park also restricting any growth as it surrounds Whitby, yet is dependant on Whitby for tourism. I am amazed at the difference in population between the Yorkshire regions and wonder why we would be linked to Leeds in the future as this is already by far the biggest devolved area.
West Yorkshire/Population 2.32 million (2018)
South Yorkshire/Population1.403 million (2018)
North Yorkshire Total 649,032 (2017). Harrogate 75,070 residents, Scarborough 52,100 residents & York 44,132 residents
East Riding of Yorkshire & Kingston upon Hull 925,0702
Tees Valley 667,500 (2015)
The mid-2015 population of Tees Valley is estimated to be 667,500 of whom: 128,600 people are aged 0-15 (19% of population), 415,900 people are aged 16-64 (62% of population), and 122,900 people are aged 65 and over (18% of population). I think the North of the region, the old Hambleton, Richmond & Whitby CCG should joined Tees Valley - this would reduce the number of elderly in the area as a whole, and give a much better opportunity for our younger population, but if this cannot be I think the North Yorkshire area should be made up of 3 Unitary authorities based in the leading towns and city, however communication and consultation with the residents is key and this has been sadly lacking.

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