GREATER Manchester's Leaders came together today (Tuesday 21 March) to add their signatures to the trailblazing deal that represents the biggest step yet in the city-region's devolution journey.
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and the 10 local authorities Leaders were joined by Minister of State for Levelling Up, Dehenna Davison, at The Manchester College today to sign the text of the deal.
The new devolution deal further embeds the role of local decision-making through additional powers and responsibilities over post-16 technical education, transport, housing, and regeneration, as well as new financial freedoms and new accountability arrangements. It is a vote of confidence in devolution and Greater Manchester and its ability to deliver.
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham said:
“I’m really pleased to welcome Levelling Up Minister Dehenna Davison to Greater Manchester to sign what is the seventh devolution deal for our city-region - but this is by some way the deepest. This Deal takes devolution in the city-region further and faster than ever before, giving us more ability to improve the lives of people who live and work here.
“I have always been a passionate believer in the power of devolution, and I’ve been in the privileged position of being able to exercise those powers and make a positive difference to people’s lives.
“We’ve worked hard to secure this Deal and have achieved a significant breakthrough by gaining greater control over post-16 technical education, setting us firmly on the path to become the UK’s first technical education city-region; new levers and responsibilities to achieve fully integrated public transport including rail through the Bee Network by 2030; new responsibilities over housing that will allow us to crack down on rogue landlords and control over £150m brownfield funding; and a single block grant that will allow us to go further and faster in growing our economy, reducing inequalities and providing opportunities for all.
“With more power comes the need for great accountability and I welcome the strengthened arrangements announced in the Deal.
“We will continue to engage with government moving forward on other areas we’d like to see more local control over in the future which will help us to continue to improve life for people in Greater Manchester and those visiting. For now, our focus will be on getting ready to take on the new powers and be held to account on the decisions we will be making on behalf of the people of Greater Manchester. The signing of this deal marks a new era for English devolution.”
Joe Manning, Managing Director at MIDAS, Manchester's Inward Investment Agency said:
"Today we attended the signing of the new trailblazing Devolution deal that will deepen global trade and investment activity for Greater Manchester.
The deal will provide GMCA with greater control than ever before over its own economic prosperity and our activity to raise our profile as an investment destination, will create job opportunities for communities and increase productivity across Greater Manchester.
I look forward to working with the GMCA and colleagues in the Department for Business and Trade and Office for Investment to implement the deal."