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Combined Authority is asking the public to have their say on the Medium Term Financial Plan


Combined Authority is asking the public to have their say on the Medium Term Financial Plan

Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority are asking members of the public and stakeholders to have their say on its draft Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) (covering 2023-2027) in a consultation which will run until 13th January 2023.

The MTFP sets out how The Combined Authority’s strategy and priority projects, including in transport, housing, skills and business support can be sustainably funded.

The Combined Authority cannot achieve the scale of its ambition with its resources alone and so will seek to work collaboratively with its constituent council partners, the Government, and local businesses to leverage other funding sources and ensure that the maximum impact, and value for money, can be delivered from the resources devolved to the area.

Last year the Combined Authority successfully worked with partners to secure an additional c.£20million for the region. This has funded work like Skills Bootcamps to support people taking the next step in their career and help local businesses grow.

Members of the public will be able to have their say on the Combined Authority’s strategic priorities which will drive decision making until 2025. Those strategic priorities are:

  • Achieving Good Growth

The Combined Authority will make investments to ensure that the economy of the area continues to grow.

Focusing on increasing the value of the economy more equitably across our region increasing productivity, innovation and attracting more businesses to deliver higher wages and sustainable employment. Investment will be targeted towards those areas that need it most such as parts of the Fens, Peterborough, and Market Towns.

  • Increased Connectivity

The Combined Authority will work to make it easier to move around the region or to work or do business online.

Delivering a sustainable, modern, resilient, integrated, and affordable transport system for the people and businesses of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. Investing in digital connectivity so more people and businesses can benefit from technology.

  • Ambitious Skills and Employment Opportunities

The Combined Authority will work to create an inclusive and world-class local skills system.

It will raise ambitions and match the needs of employers, learners and communities to enable a successful, globally competitive economy; offering high-skilled, well-paid and good quality jobs to deliver increased productivity and prosperity for our communities.

  • Enabling Resilient Communities

The Combined Authority will make a range of investments to tackle future climate change as well as supporting communities to adapt.

It will address the decline in biodiversity and enable communities to respond to financial and social crises, looking to extend cultural opportunities for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to be a great place to live and work.

As reported to the Combined Authority Board on 30th November, £3.5million needs to be found in 2023 to help keep Combined Authority-supported bus routes going

In October of this year, Stagecoach East withdrew from 18 services and reduced a further 5 bus routes citing that declining bus travel compounded by the pandemic made these routes financially unsustainable. This led to an outpouring from the public, councillors and MPs who advocated that these services are vital to getting so many residents to school and work. Moreover, bus services provide a positive impact for residents who are not frequent bus users; for every £1 invested in local bus priority measures can deliver up to £7 of net economic benefit.

The Combined Authority stepped up to fund bus service provision on the cancelled routes until April 2023, to the tune of £1.25million. If these services are to continue, they need to be paid for.

The MTFP consultation includes an opportunity for the public to feedback on how they want their bus services to be funded, including whether they would support a Mayoral Precept as well as other options.

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough devolution deal allows the Mayor to raise a ‘Mayoral precept’ from every household in the region to fund activities for mayoral functions such as transport. The Precept is the amount Cambridgeshire and Peterborough council tax payers contribute towards the Combined Authority within their council tax bill.

Deputy Mayor of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough, Cllr Anna Smith, said: “The Combined Authority fully understands that many people are feeling the effects of the cost-of-living crisis. Similarly, public services are facing difficulties in balancing service demands, inflation and rising costs. It’s a tough financial landscape that is compounded by historical underfunding in our region.

“Sadly Government spends only £16 per head on public transport in the East of England as opposed to £32 per head in Yorkshire and Humber or £36 per head in East Midlands.

“The public response to this consultation will be discussed at a Combined Authority board meeting on 25th January 2023. Please take this opportunity to tell us what you think of this financial plan.”

The consultation can be accessed here.

Survey closes 13th January 2023 at 5PM.

Hard copies of the MTFP consultation materials and survey form are available on request. For this, or other questions, please call 01480 277180 or email finance@cambridgeshirepeterborough-ca.gov.uk.