December 13 2013 Latest news:
Annabelle Dickson, Political Correspondent
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
New powers will be handed over to Ipswich politicians and businesses today in a move they claim will create thousands of jobs in the town and wider area.
The Greater Ipswich City Deal, which was put together by a partnership of council and business figures, will get 3,500 young people into work, create 5,000 new apprenticeships by 2019, an extra 3,000 “high value” jobs and 400 new businesses, the architects of the deal say.
The bid was put together by a partnership of Suffolk councils and the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership.
Whitehall will devolve a £4million pot of youth employment cash to the partnership and under the deal they will be able to bid for regional growth money.
A package of measures to support businesses to grow, which they say will in turn create jobs, is also part of the deal rubber stamped by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.
Cities minister Greg Clark will visit Ipswich today to sign the deal, which is the first in the region and part of a second wave after the eight biggest cities were the pioneers.
Norwich has also bid for a City Deal which has not yet been given the green light.
The 2011 Localism Act paved the way for a new law to allow local councils to make the case for being given new powers to promote economic growth and set their own distinct policies.
Paul Winter, Ipswich Building Society chief executive and chairman of the Greater Ipswich Deal Steering Group, said: “Our City Deal is a fantastic example of how the public and private sector can work together for the benefit of all.
“The changes that will come about as a result of the deal will make a real difference to the employment opportunities for people across the region, and I look forward to seeing the positive impact of the deal in the next few years.”
Mark Bee, Suffolk County Council leader, said: “Businesses constantly tell us that improving the skills that our workforce has is the most important issue for them. That’s why skills are a central part of our City Deal.
The effects of this City Deal won’t just be felt in Ipswich. The entire county stands to benefit because of the investment and improvements that will be made as a result.
“This is a significant moment for the future prosperity of Suffolk.”
David Ellesmere, Ipswich Borough Council leader, said the deal built on the council’s existing programmes to boost skills and create jobs.
“This City Deal will help us tackle youth unemployment and give
our children the skills they need
now to do the jobs of the future,” he added.