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Leader's call: 'Have your say on devolution deal'

Residents are being urged to take part in the current consultation on the devolution deal that is being proposed for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

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Fenland District Council leader Councillor John Clark said it was very important that people seized the opportunity to have their say on the scheme.

In addition, Ipsos MORI are carrying out telephone interviews with about 2,660 people across the whole Cambridgeshire and Peterborough area.

The deal would involve the transfer of significant powers and funding from central to local government. Full details can be found at www.fenland.gov.uk/devolution.

Cllr Clark said: "The proposed deal is the outcome of a long, complex negotiation during which an earlier scheme for the whole of East Anglia was rejected. What we have now is a big improvement on that, focusing on our own area.

"I understand that some people have concerns about aspects of the deal but it has gained the support of all seven councils in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, as well as our local enterprise partnership. It offers considerable benefits to Fenland, including millions more pounds for key infrastructure projects and housing.

"It would also mean that more decisions would be taken locally rather than in Westminster and Whitehall.

"The Government has stated that the public must be consulted and that their feedback will be taken into account before it takes further legislation forward.

"All the participating councils will have to debate the proposals again in October and local people's views will help to inform that debate. So it is very important that as many people as possible examine the deal and express their views."

Detailed analysis of the responses will take place in the week after the consultation closes (August 23-29). Council leaders will consider the findings in the following week, after which councillors will be briefed and the results made public.

A report bringing together the outcomes of the survey and the telephone interviews will be submitted to the Secretary of State on September 5.

Councils will hold their final debates during October.

Article added July 18, 2016