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Extended interview: Sunderland's bid for City Deal

Sunderland is one of two areas in the North East which could be given more freedom from central Government.

Sunderland and the Tees Valley are being considered for the coalition's City Deal, which while not meaning more investment could lead to more local powers.

In return, the areas must show they can create growth and jobs.

The deputy chief executive of Sunderland City Council, Janet Johnson, spoke to ITV News about the city's bid to be one of the city deals.

North East to gain more independence through city deals

Twenty more areas, including two in the North East, are to be given greater independence from Whitehall in a bid to help them boost regional economic growth, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced.

The "cities" are to enter negotiations with the Government to take on powers and responsibilities that will give them greater scope to thrive.

City Deals will give participating areas the ability to use budgets better for local needs such as training and skills, roads and other developments.

In return, the areas must demonstrate they have a strong plan for local growth. The Government said it would work closely with cities to negotiate a deal over the next year.

The two areas announced from the North East are Sunderland and Tees Valley.

"Even more places will be free from Whitehall control and have the tools to power their own growth.

These deals help cities and their wider areas make once in a generation changes that will be felt by everyone.

Letting go of power and money doesn't come naturally to Whitehall.

Over time, the economic importance of other parts of the country has been devastatingly downplayed, as the economic elite have narrowed the debate towards a London-centric view.

Rather than let our industries and communities wither, we need to free up cities outside of London that have their own unique selling points."

– Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister

"City deals are a quiet revolution in the way Britain is governed.

Rather than London laying down the law, cities have the right to do things their way.

The stories of their own futures will be as individual as their unique histories."

– Greg Clark, Financial Secretary to the Treasury and Minister for Cities

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Nick Clegg talks about City Deals

Two North East areas could be given greater independence from Whitehall in a bid to help them boost regional economic growth, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced.

Sunderland and the Tees Valley are two of 20 areas are being considered for City Deal.

The "cities" are to enter negotiations with the Government to take on powers and responsibilities that will give them greater scope to thrive.

Nick Clegg believes this deals will be positive for the North East.

MP welcomes Tees Valley's city deal progress

North East MP James Wharton has welcome the announcement that the Tees Valley City Deal bid is to progress through to the next round.

Mr Wharton was the first MP to call on the Tees Valley LEP to bid for the City Deal status and has previously lobbied ministers on behalf of the area.

“I have been a long term supporter of this important bid.

If successful it will transfer a whole host of powers from national government to a local level.

Control over transport and skills spending, to name but two key areas, will mean local businesses can properly plan for Teesside’s future economy.

This has real implications for our area’s long term development and will see more control over spending in a whole host of areas controlled locally.

This is real and tangible decentralisation and our area is at the forefront of the process.”

– James Wharton MP

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