City Deals unveiled
The agreements will give the local authorities greater powers to directly invest in infrastructure and other priorities to boost their economies.
Greater Manchester’s plans were originally announced at the Budget in March, but since then work has been underway to finalise similar proposals for the other core cities.
Many of the deals involve arrangements related to tax increment financing, and other measures to give them greater control over infrastructure and services.
The Bristol and West of England deal, for example, will see local authorities and the local enterprise partnership (LEP) gaining more control over transport infrastructure. This will include a 10-year transport funding allocation to deliver the Greater Bristol Metro, total financial flexibility to deliver bus rapid transit schemes and more responsibility for local rail services.
Meanwhile, the Greater Birmingham and Solihull agreement will see the local enterprise partnership create GBS Finance to “aggregate, manage recycle and invest public funds to deliver LEP priorities”. It is proposed GBS Finance will hold over £1.5bn for investment in LEP priorities.
“These groundbreaking deals signal a dramatic power shift, freeing cities from Whitehall control,” said Clegg.
Nathan Goode, at financial consultancy Grant Thornton, said the City Deals "have the potential to transform the ability of cities to plan their own futures.
"Cities need to use this opportunity to create effective partnerships in their areas between public, private and community stakeholders," he added.
It is expected that deals between the government and other cities and regions will be established in the months ahead.
To see all the City Deals, click here.