Agenda item

Devolution to Lancashire - Proposal to create the Lancashire Combined County Authority

Minutes:

A report was submitted which sought approval of the Proposal to create the Lancashire Combined County Authority for the areas of Lancashire County Council, Blackpool Council and Blackburn with Darwen Council.

 

Members were reminded that in November 2023, Lancashire County Council, Blackpool Council and Blackburn with Darwen Council (the ‘Constituent Councils’) each unanimously agreed to undertake statutory consultation on a proposal to establish the Lancashire Combined County Authority (‘LCCA’) across Lancashire, Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen, in accordance with the provisions of the Levelling Up and Regeneration Act 2023 ("the Act"). This consultation ran for a period of 8 weeks from 1 December 2023 to 26 January 2024.

 

To progress the area’s devolution deal, under the legislation, the three Constituent Councils had to submit to the Government a LCCA Proposal (‘the Proposal’) that took into account the results of the consultation and thereby the views of residents and other stakeholders. It was important to note that the obligation on the Constituent Councils under the Act was to carry out a consultation “across the proposed area” and consider the results of that consultation. This was a requirement for each Constituent Council to consider all of the consultation responses not just those provided in their own area.

 

A summary of the key points raised in the consultation was set out in the report submitted, and a full consideration of the consultation responses was set out at Appendix 1 and had to be considered in full alongside the summary of the Ipsos Consultation Report at Appendix 3 in deciding how to proceed.

 

The Proposal had been amended to take account of the outcomes of that consultation. The Proposal was attached at Appendix 2, and Council was now asked to give final approval to the Proposal and agree that it be formally submitted to the Secretary of State subject to the delegations set out above which were required to ensure submission can be made after all three Councils (which will form the Constituent Councils of the LCCA) had approved the Proposal. Agreeing to submit the Proposal at the meeting was key as otherwise it risked the timetable to establish the LCCA in the autumn of this year.

 

A report in substantively similar terms was also being presented to all three Constituent Councils.

 

RESOLVED –

 

Itis recommendedthat Council Forum agrees to:

                        i.         Consider the outcomes of the consultation on the draft Proposal published in November 2023, as set out in this report and its appendices;

                       ii.         Approve the updated Proposal (the Proposal) attached at Appendix 2 to this report, taking into consideration and having due regard to the consultation responses and the Public Sector Equality Duty, to create the Lancashire Combined County Authority (LCCA) for the areas of Lancashire County Council, Blackpool Council and Blackburn with Darwen Council;

                      iii.         Note how the Proposal has been amended to take account of the results of the Consultation, as set out in this report and in more detail within Appendix 2 (the Summary of the Consultation and the Constituent Councils’ Response), Appendix 3 (Executive Summary of the Ipsos Consultation Report), and Appendix 4 (the Summary of Communications and Engagement Activity);

                     iv.         Delegate authority to the Chief Executive to submit the Proposal to the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (Secretary of State) after consultation with the Chief Executives of the other two constituent councils to confirm that all constituent councils approve the amended proposal for submission;

                       v.         Delegate authority to the Chief Executive to approve any typographical or technical amendments to the Proposal which the Chief Executives of the other two constituent councils also agree on, on behalf of Blackburn with Darwen Council, prior to submission; and

                     vi.         Consent to the making of the necessary Regulations to create the Lancashire Combined County Authority in accordance with the arrangements and principles set out in the report, and delegates to the Chief Executive, after consultation with the Leader of the Council, and subject to the approval of the other two Constituent Councils, final approval of the draft Regulations, subject to those regulations reflecting the principles agreed in the Proposal document and this report.

 

Supporting documents: