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PM to announce North of Tyne CA legislation

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The prime minister is expected to announce on Monday new legislation will be laid in parliament that will create a new North of Tyne CA and pave the way for up to £600m of government investment over 30 years.

The deal will allow Newcastle city , North Tyneside, and Northumberland county councils to set up a new authority in October after leaders voted in support of the deal at a meeting of the North East CA leadership board in April.

Nick Forbes (Lab), leader of Newcastle City Council, said: “Our region needs more and better jobs and we have ambitious plans to take back control of decision making and let people here determine how we should invest in the North East.

“But this is just the first step in our devolution journey and, while I welcome today’s news, myself and other leaders are ambitious for far greater devolution out of Whitehall and back to the north.”

The three North of Tyne authorities started to pursue a devolution deal for the North East in September 2016, after a separate deal to establish a North East CA was not agreed upon by council leaders.

Once created, the new combined authority will appoint an interim mayor until a new, directly elected mayor for North of Tyne is elected in summer 2019.

The leader of Gateshead Council, Martin Gannon (Lab), has labelled the government’s devolution plans for the North East as a “complete dysfunction” however.

According to Chronicle Live, Cllr Gannon told councillors last week: “We have the North of Tyne, the South of Tyne, Tees Valley, a LEP, and this joint transport committee. That is at least five bodies - it is not devolution, it is complete dysfunction.”

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