Key Cities responds to the 2020 Budget

Cllr John Merry CBE, Chair of Key Cities and Deputy City Mayor of Salford, commented:

“As a group, Key Cities shares the Government’s focus on levelling up our regional communities and unleashing the UK’s economic potential and stand ready to contribute to the development of both the National Infrastructure Strategy and National Bus Strategy. The cut in interest rates for social housing loans are also a step in the right direction, as we strive to ensure that housing policy and funding mechanisms are sufficiently robust and flexible to allow local authorities and partners to address the specific housing challenges of their area.

Of course, the proof will be in the pudding. This investment absolutely should not arrive at the expense of funding for local government and local services, and the lack of any firm commitment to investing in social care over the coming months is disappointing. Cross-party discussions have been ongoing for some time now, and it is vital that this talk translates into tangible delivery. We also strongly encourage greater clarity on the announced changes to business rates, as it’s imperative that these are fully reimbursed for local services.

Our mid-sized cities play a critical role within their respective regional economies and have a hugely important part to play in what happens next. By working together, we can truly develop solutions to the constraints holding back growth and further prosperity amongst newly empowered local economies and communities across the UK.”