STAFFORDSHIRE County Council is set to bid for greater power and finance from the Government to drive economic growth and create thousands of new jobs.
The authority is teaming up with Stokeon- Trent City Council to express an interest in the second wave of ‘City Deals’, which looks to give the eight largest cities outside London greater freedom and funding for new roads, rail, broadband and other schemes to grow their economies and create jobs
Philip Atkins, leader of Staffordshire County Council, and Mohammed Pervez, leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council, confirmed that they would be working together on a united bid for the area.
The pair aim to increase the area’s gross domestic product by 50 per cent over 10 years, creating 50,000 jobs.
Councillor Atkins said: “We will work on this project for the population of Staffordshire in its entirety, taking advantage of our prime location in the heart of England, with excellent road and rail links.
“We will need to use the skills of more than 40 private and public sector partners who have already committed support for our approach.”
The two councils will support the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), working with more than 40 public and private sector partners, to help make Staffordshire an even better place to do business.
Ron Dougan, chairman of the Stoke-on- Trent and Staffordshire LEP, said: “Businesses have already been working with local authorities across Staffordshire to champion our area as a great place to do business and promote initiatives that will deliver substantial growth and new jobs.”
In addition to the proposed deal, the councils continue working together and talking to Government about a range of other opportunities for improving the local economy.
The announcement begins a lengthy submission process and an expression of interest is due to be submitted by the end of November.