Fenland councillors back devolution plan

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Councillors in Fenland have completed a clean sweep of authorities to back devolution proposals for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Members gave their support to the plan for a new combined authority for the area, which would be headed by an elected mayor, during a meeting in March on Friday.

The council was the last of the area’s authorities to vote on the proposals.

And their vote meant that all of the councils in the area covered by the scheme have now backed them.

Council leader John Clark said the deal provided “real opportunities to benefit all our towns and villages and their residents.”

He said: “Fenland will have a greater ability to take local decisions on a wide range of issues that are important to our local areas and people - skill, transport, growth and economy.”

“Importantly, we are not being asked to relinquish any part of its sovereignty as part of this proposal. Therefore the day-to-day operations of the council are likely to remain largely unaffected.”

A seven-week public consultation has now started on the proposals and participating councils will make a final decision on whether to participate in the deal or not in October.

If the plan is implemented, voters will be asked to choose their first mayor in May next year.

Meanwhile, councillors in West Norfolk have backed plans for a separate combined authority covering Norfolk and Suffolk.