England

Alliance proposal to replace development agency

Councils in Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and East Staffordshire are to discuss a replacement organisation for the East Midlands Development Agency (EMDA).

Talks are to take place between the county authorities and Nottingham and Derby city councils, on creating a local enterprise partnership.

The group, to be chaired by local businesses, would bid for and distribute funding.

EMDA is due to be scrapped under the coalition government's plans.

Councils have been told to submit their plans to central government by 6 September.

However, agreement could be reached more quickly as Conservative-controlled local authorities, including Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, have been told to get their plans in by 30 July in order to have them looked at quickly.

Derby City Council has pledged that Derbyshire will have a stronger voice under the new partnership, after cabinet member for resources, Sean Marshall, told a council meeting that the county had felt "at the bottom of the pile" under the EMDA.

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