Lord Andrew Adonis
David Frost – Chair, LEP Network
A sandwich lunch will be provided
Location: A central London location to be confirmed
To boost economic competitiveness and growth, the Government recently signalled that it intends to implement most of Lord Heseltine’s proposals to devolve spending and responsibilities on to the local level. In particular, the Chancellor set out a commitment to introduce a Single Local Growth Fund, under which all 39 existing local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) will be able to bid into a local growth deal with the Treasury from 2015/16.
The ultimate success of this policy is predicated on the capability of local business leaders, politicians and other partners locally. To bid for the fund, LEPs will need to develop a robust strategic growth plan based on collaboration, and demonstrate that they can leverage in additional private investment. But while Government intends to support LEPs financially and to improve their governance, variability in the quality of LEPs is well known, and some may struggle to cope without the requisite support.
This event, which is the third in a series of three roundtable discussions on the Single Local Growth Fund, will explore how LEPs can rise to the challenge, which responsibilities should be held locally, sub-nationally or nationally, and what Government can do to boost their capacity and capability.
Discussion will focus on the following key questions:
- Where do LEPs most need to up their game? And, do we have the right LEPs in place to pursue the Heseltine agenda?
- What would constitute a compelling bid to the Fund, and what can Government do if LEPs that fail to win significant sums from the Fund?
- How can LEPs make good deals with the private sector to leverage in additional investment?
- Can LEPs ever provide the level of accountability that Whitehall would wish of them? And, who ultimately is accountable for growth?
- Are we likely to see significant governance reform, such as ‘conurbation mayors’?