Mayors seek control over replacement for EU cash

The metro mayors of Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield and Tees Valley have lobbied the government to devolve spending authority over the proposed capital that will replace their current European funding after Brexit.

With central government funding being cut across England, the funding from the European Union has become increasingly important to authorities, with the Conservative’s pledging as part of their 2017 election manifesto to create a UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Now demanding control over the replacement funding, Andy Burnham of Greater Manchester, Steve Rotheram of Liverpool city region, Dan Jarvis of Sheffield city region and Ben Houchen of Tees Valley said in a joint statement to the Financial Times that ‘substantial devolution of power and resources’ must come out of Westminster and be given to the English regions.

The EU currently provides annual financing of £50 million to Greater Manchester, £32 million to Liverpool, £30 million to Sheffield and £25 million to the Tees Valley.

Houchen said: “What I don’t want is another Whitehall power grab. Post Brexit, we need to ensure that EU funding comes directly back to metro mayors so we can direct investment most effectively to meet the needs of local people and local businesses.”

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