Additional £1m to be spent on North Yorkshire devolution deal

County Hall, Northallerton. Photo: LDRS.

A committee that focuses on North Yorkshire’s devolution deal has approved an additional £1 million to implement the new authority.

The North Yorkshire Combined Authority, which will elect a mayor in May 2024, will oversee £13 million worth of new homes, green economic growth to achieve a carbon-negative region and further investment in digital broadband, if its setup is successful.

£582,000 has already been spent on the implementation of the authority, but a further £1 million was granted by the committee on July 24.

Nick Edwards from North Yorkshire Council, speaking on behalf of the chief finance officer for the devolution deal, said: “With regards to the request for an additional £1 million, the principles remain to the initial cash flow and that is on the basis that when the combined authority is established and it receives its grant funding that the implementation costs are repaid immediately to the council.

“If for any reason the combined authority does not proceed, the financial risks of the implementation costs rest equally with North Yorkshire and York councils.”

However, Mr Edwards asked the committee to consider the significant returns this investment would take from securing the implementation of the deal.

Mr Edwards said: “The combined authority will receive significant funding when it is established – funding which is on top of any specific project funding – from November 1, if that is the setup date, will include funding of around £10 million, and £19.5 million in 2024/25.

“So in a matter of months of the authority going live, there will be funds of circa £30m available to it.”

These funds are expected to go towards the mayoral capacity fund, the transport capacity fund and the investment fund.

A request to approve an adult education budget request of almost £500,000 was also approved at the meeting.

The estimated cost of delivering the implementation stage of the adult education budget over two years is £975,748.

The bid to the Department of Education is £480,932 (49.29 per cent), requiring a local contribution of £494,816 (50.71 per cent).