Keynsham residents asked for views on Metro Mayor for West of England

Published on: 08 Jul 2016

Residents across Bath and North East Somerset are being asked for their views on the creation of a mayor for the West of England.

The public consultation has been launched following the council’s decision to move forward with a £1 billion devolution deal for the region – also agreed by the local authorities in Bristol and South Gloucestershire.

As part of the deal, a new West of England Mayoral Combined Authority (MCA) would be set up to manage the new powers, funding and responsibilities handed over by central government.

The results of the consultation, which will run until August 15 in all three council areas, will be taken into account by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when deciding whether the deal should go ahead. If it did, elections for a West of England mayor would be held in May 2017.

Council leader Tim Warren said: “This deal – worth more than £1,000 per head of population – far outweighs any other devolution deal done elsewhere in the country. This represents the best possible deal both in terms of the funding secured and safeguards in place to protect the absolute autonomy of Bath & North East Somerset Council.

“By unlocking £1 billion of additional funding over the next 30 years, this deal will give us greater freedom to plan for the future, invest in much-needed new infrastructure, and deliver the new homes and jobs our area will need in the years ahead.”

Residents are being asked for feedback on four key areas: decision making, place (transport and housing), people (adult education and skills) and business.

People can have their say online at www.westof englanddevolution.co.uk or can obtain a paper consultation form at local libraries and one-stop shops or on 0117 922 2848. A number of roadshows will also be held to give residents the chance to find out more and share their views, including at The Space in Keynsham on Monday, July 25, from 7-9pm.

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