Local MP Alex Cunningham has welcomed the announcement that the Homes and Communities Agency will be allowed to take on the majority of Regional Development Agency assets, allowing Local Enterprise Partnerships and Local Authorities to access them. Alex said:
“This is welcome news for the North East. Vince Cable and Eric Pickles have been forced to retreat from a full-blown fire sale of RDA assets after months of pressure from Labour, local authorities and business organisations. We called for Local Enterprise Partnerships and Local Authorities to be given the ability to take on assets back in February, and this halfway measure is as result of our campaigning.
“Our successful Regional Development Agency, One North East, in partnership with local authorities and others, built up tremendous assets including land parcels to redevelop for the benefit North East people. It would have been a tragedy for all their good work to have gone to waste.
“Assets meant for the regions should stay in the regions, and local authorities and Local Enterprise Partnerships must have a leading say over what happens to assets in the North East and across the country. They’re crucial for regional growth, which Labour has proposed to boost by £200 million extra for the Regional Growth Fund through a repeat of the bankers’ bonus tax.”