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Combined Authorities

Question for Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

UIN HL15627, tabled on 9 May 2019

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the answer by Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth on 7 May (HL Deb, col 1140), with regard to combined authorities in England with directly elected mayors (1) what powers those authorities have in common, (2) what powers are specific to individual combined authorities or to groups of combined authorities, (3) what are the dates of the next elections for each mayor, and (4) what was the turnout in each combined authority in the most recent election for each directly elected mayor.

Answered on

22 May 2019

1) All eight mayoral combined authorities (MCAs) in England - Cambridgeshire & Peterborough, Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, North of Tyne, Sheffield City Region, Tees Valley, West of England and West Midlands- have the following functions in common:

  • Integrated transport functions
  • Bus improvement powers including bus franchising
  • Economic development and regeneration powers
  • Power to borrow for transport functions

They also all have a power of competence over areas where they have had functions conferred. In the case of Cambridgeshire & Peterborough and West of England this is the General Power of Competence that principal local authorities have.

2) Each MCA has a different set of functions conferred on them, reflecting the bespoke nature of devolution deals as shown below:

  • Power to raise a precept on council tax to fund mayoral powers - all MCAs except West of England.
  • Power to pay grant - all MCAs except Sheffield City Region.
  • Power to establish Mayoral Development Corporations - all MCAs, apart from Cambridgeshire & Peterborough and Sheffield City Region
  • Power to borrow for any combined authority function - all MCAs except North of Tyne and Sheffield City Region
  • Adult education functions -all MCAs except North of Tyne and Sheffield City Region
  • Homes England powers around regeneration - all MCAs except Cambridgeshire & Peterborough, Tees Valley and Sheffield City Region.
  • Power to raise a business rates supplement - Cambridgeshire & Peterborough. Liverpool City Region, West of England and West Midlands.
  • Strategic planning powers - Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region and West of England
  • Police & Crime Commissioner functions - exclusive to Greater Manchester.
  • Fire & Rescue Authority - exclusive to Greater Manchester
  • Public health functions - exclusive to Greater Manchester
  • Powers in relation to combined authority roads, as defined in legislation - exclusive to West Midlands.

3) The dates for the next mayoral election in each MCA are as follows:

7 May 2020: Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, Tees Valley, West Midlands

6 May 2021: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, West of England

5 May 2022: Sheffield City Region

2 May 2024: North of Tyne

4) The turnout for the inaugural mayoral election in each combined authority is as follows:

4 May 2017:

  • Cambridgeshire and Peterborough - a turnout of 33.57%
  • Greater Manchester - a turnout of 28.93%
  • Liverpool City Region - a turnout of 26.1%
  • Tees Valley - a turnout of 21.31%
  • West of England - a turnout of 29.72%
  • West Midlands - a turnout of 26.7%

3 May 2018

  • Sheffield City Region - a turnout of 25.82%

2 May 2019

  • North of Tyne - a turnout of 32.3%