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Liverpool launches judicial review against EU funding allocation

Legal action has been launched against the Government for “unjust” allocation of European funding. Liverpool City Region and Sheffield City Region are preparing the first stage of a judicial review against the decision. 

Liverpool faces a cut of 60% during the 2014-20 period compared to the previous programme of European Commission funding. It means Liverpool will have less funding per head of population than the rest of the North West, despite having a lower GDP. 

The UK Government has decided Liverpool City Area will receive £185m – £128 per person compared to £325 in the previous round – following the reallocation of £650m EU funding to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

Deputy mayor of Liverpool, Cllr Paul Brant, said: “It is regrettable that we have had to take this action, but we are left with no option. It is clear that despite months of lobbying both before and after the announcement, the Government is burying its head in the sand and hoping we will simply go away. 

“It is vitally important we send out a clear message about the unfairness and injustice over the allocation and let them know we are not prepared to accept it without a fight. It feels like the formula has been gerrymandered, and we have been advised we have good grounds for a legal challenge.  

“The Government has patently ignored the EU funding formula, and we are now in the bizarre and baffling situation where areas better off than ours will receive more funding per head of population. It simply cannot be fair that Cheshire gets more when the Government’s own figures show it is already far wealthier than Liverpool. 

“It flies in the face of the whole purpose of European funding, and can only serve to widen the gap between our area and other parts of not just England, but also the North West.”

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