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Suffolk County Council invites residents to have their say on devolution deal





Residents in Suffolk could, for the first time, have the chance to elect their county council leader under new devolution plans.

Suffolk County Council is inviting people and businesses to give their thoughts on a deal which could see a transfer of power and funding from London to Suffolk.

Key items on the agenda include the ability for residents to directly elect the leader of Suffolk County Council every four years, as opposed to them being selected by county councillors.

Suffolk County Council leader Matthew Hicks described the deal as ‘empowering’. Picture: Mark Bullimore
Suffolk County Council leader Matthew Hicks described the deal as ‘empowering’. Picture: Mark Bullimore

It could also allow for control of a £480 million investment fund for the next 30 years; control of an adult education budget each year (worth £9.4 million for 2025/26); £5.8 million in one-off funding for the development of brownfield sites; plus multi-year transport funding and an additional £500,000 over the next two years to see Suffolk’s Local Transport Plan.

Suffolk County Council signed an in-principle devolution deal with the Government in December 2022.

Cllr Matthew Hicks, the leader of the county council, said: “This is an important and empowering decision about the future we want for Suffolk.

“A decision of this significance deserves considered input from the broadest range of people possible, which is why the consultation is open for 10 weeks.

“I urge everyone to take time to read the details of the deal and then complete to have their say in this consultation.”

The 10-week consultation opened at 2pm today and can be found here.

A decision is expected in July.