Tees Valley Combined Authority has now become the first authority outside of London empowered to create Mayoral Development Corporations.
In the Tees Valley Devolution Deal, it was agreed that the Tees Valley should have the power to create locally-accountable Mayoral Development Corporations, able to accelerate economic growth by supporting the regeneration of key sites.
The Tees Valley Combined Authority (Functions) Order 2017 has now been approved by Parliament and brought into law. The new legislation will allow the Tees Valley Mayor, to be elected on May 4, to create new, locally-accountable Development Corporations. The Tees Valley is the first area outside Greater London to benefit from these powers, which have previously only been available to the London 2012 Legacy Development Corporation and the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation – both created by the Mayor of London.
The new powers include the responsibility for infrastructure, to attract new businesses, and to coordinate land ownership; including through compulsory purchase powers.
The Tees Valley is moving quickly to make use of the new powers. A consultation concluded last Friday to create a South Tees Development Corporation, to drive forward the opportunities arising from of a 4,300 acres area, which includes the site of the former SSI steelworks in Redcar.
Councillor Sue Jeffrey, Chair of the Shadow Board of the South Tees Development Corporation, Leader of Redcar and Cleveland Council, and a member of the Tees Valley Combined Authority said:
“Having seen first-hand the devastating impact of the closure of the Redcar Steelworks, I understand the importance of using every opportunity possible to secure the new, good quality jobs our region needs. These new powers, secured by the Tees Valley Combined Authority through our devolution deal, allow us to create a powerful new development body, and secure the huge opportunities available in the South Tees area.”
Following Parliamentary and Ministerial approval of the Functions Order, Northern Powerhouse Minister Andrew Percy said: “I’d like to congratulate the Tees Valley for having the vision to establish this far-reaching new deal. These new powers that we’re devolving straight from Whitehall to the Tees Valley are a crucial step to improve economic growth and regeneration in the area.
“It’s all part of our plan to give the region direct control over its future, with local people having the opportunity to vote for a brand new Mayor on 4 May.”