North East Lincolnshire

Council leader wants authority to stay in Humber LEP

The leader of North East Lincolnshire Council has backed the authority to remain in the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership after a government shakeup.

It comes as the government announced a review into the partnerships and said that overlaps in regional borders need to be “eradicated”.

The region is currently part of both the Humber partnership and Greater Lincolnshire.

But, Councillor Ray Oxby told councillors at a full council meeting that the county’s “natural geography” is in the Humber.

North East Lincolnshire falls into both the Humber and Greater Lincolnshire LEPs.

“The Humber is an economic powerhouse and big business in the region gets it,” he said.

“So, if a choice has to be made, I see this council as a member of the Humber LEP.

“But still, rightly, committed to working in collaboration with our local authority colleagues across Lincolnshire.”

He added that he has made it clear to council leaders across the county where the region belongs should the partnerships change.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government proposed a review into the country’s partnerships back in July.

Local enterprise partnerships are organisations made up of leading councillors and businesses which promote economic growth.

Councillor Colin Davie addressing Lincolnshire County Council’s full council meeting.

But, Councillor Colin Davie, executive member for economy at Lincolnshire County Council, said he was “uncomfortable” with the idea of changing the borders.

“I’m very uncomfortable with that request,” he said.

“The board works very closely with the Humber LEP and there are no problems at all with that relationship.

“Business goes where business needs to be.”

He added that the partnership will ask the government to keep the geographical area of the Greater Lincolnshire LEP the same.

The current LEP area covers Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire.

However, the northern areas of the county also fall into the Humber partnership region.

The government wants to remove these overlaps in order to “boost performance”.

The communities secretary, James Brokenshire MP, said: “This publication of the Strengthened Local Enterprise Partnerships policy represents a step change in approach for LEPs.

“We will continue our work to strengthen these leading institutions to develop ambitious strategies for growth and build an economy which is fit for the future.”

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