Queen’s Speech - LEPs play continuing and critical role as local business voice in levelling up
The Queen’s Speech sets the government’s priorities for the year ahead and among the 38 Bills listed, the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill is a major focus for the continuing role of LEPs as the effective local business voice in the levelling up agenda. LEP Network Chair, Mark Bretton sets out the LEP position:
“The Queen’s Speech raises the legislative curtain on how the government is going to deal with the gale force economic headwinds that lie ahead as UK businesses and local communities face some of the toughest economic challenges we’ve seen for decades.
"For LEPs, all business wants to know is how can we support them now, and what we can do for them today. Never has the local business voice needed to be heard more, never has it been more important, and that role firmly sits with Local Enterprise Partnerships, whether they may be integrating into local authorities or not. For the vast majority not on that pathway, they have a continuing and critical role in responding to these challenges and supporting the needs of business right now.
“That role will be instrumental in translating many aspects of the Queen’s Speech into reality on the ground.
"Although LEPs have an interest in a number of Bills in the speech including Transport, Energy, and Genetics, it’s the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill driven by Michael Gove that LEPs are focussed on, and that has the potential to transform local communities, particularly the proposal to create County Deals where possible. But these deals may be some way off, and many LEPs will not be on that journey for some time, if at all.
"Until then, LEPs will utilise the opportunities in the Queen’s Speech to continue championing an effective local business voice in driving research and innovation, developing sector clusters that galvanise their local economies, supporting start-ups and local businesses to stimulate economic growth, and exploiting the local economic strengths they know so well.”