Norfolk and Suffolk devolution deal in doubt after two councils reject plans

Norwich City Council rejected the deal last night.

The future of one of the East Anglian devolution deals could be in doubt after two councils in Norfolk rejected it.

Both Norwich City Council and Breckland Council voted not to back the plans last night.

In Norwich, cabinet councillors were unanimously against the proposals while it was a similar story in Breckland where they voted 25-8 in favour of not going ahead.

George Osborne announced the proposal in his March budget statement. Credit: PA

However, Babergh, Broadland and St Edmundsbury offered their backing to progress the deal to a public consultation stage.

Despite that support, the decision by both Breckland and Norwich could throw the deal into jeopardy.

Whilst Breckland is keen to foster partnership working, any devolution to a combined authority has to be right for the residents and businesses of our district.

Cllr William Nunn, Leader of Breckland Council
The Cambridge and Peterborough deal is still likely to happen. Credit: ITV News Anglia

As things stand, there are two separate devolution deals on the table for East Anglia, with one for Norfolk and Suffolk and the other involving Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.

For both deals to be approved, they need the backing of all the councils involved.

Both deals involve the appointment of an elected mayor.

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough deal looks to be in a better state at the moment, after councillors in the county backed the plans at their own meeting last night.

The devolution deal that we have agreed to support and share for public consultation would bring desperately needed new homes to Cambridge, helping us to ensure that people get the homes they need and deserve and to secure the future growth of the city’s economy.

Cllr Lewis Herbert, Leader of Cambridge City Council