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13.07.18

Council leaders call for consultation on post-Brexit regional funding

Local government leaders have welcomed the government’s Brexit white paper, with the LGA arguing that it gives “a clearer understanding of what the government’s vision of post-Brexit Britain will look like.”

Moreover, the LGA welcomed the white paper’s acknowledgement of the importance of replacing EU regional funding through the European Structural Investment Funds, currently worth £8.4bn, with the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF).

However, the association said that details of the funding must be fleshed out to secure the financial future of councils.

Cllr Kevin Bentley, chairman of its Brexit Taskforce, explained: “Brexit cannot leave local areas facing huge financial uncertainty as a result of lost regional aid funding.”

Bentley noted that the funding has been used by local areas to create jobs, support enterprises, deliver skills training and invest in critical infrastructure, before calling on the government to “act immediately to consult on the detail of what the fund will look like.”

“Councils need to know quickly how they will be able to bid, receive guarantees that the UKSPF will at least match the funding from the current European Structural Fund and receive their funding allocations by the time we leave the EU,” he added.

“Without action there is a risk that billions of pounds of investment into our communities will be lost and local areas and economies will be denied desperately-needed funding.”

The LGA also highlighted the importance of EU nationals in local services, noting that 7% of social care workers are non-UK, EU nationals.

Top image: MicroStockHub

 

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