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Leader welcomes step towards combined authority

The Leader of Portsmouth City Council has welcomed a new business rates deal with government as "a huge step forwards towards a Solent Combined Authority".

Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid has announced that the Isle of Wight, Southampton and Portsmouth will be allowed to keep 100 per cent of business rates collected in their areas, as part of a year-long national trial. 

If the local economy grows, and more business rates come in, then the three councils will be able use the extra money to offset recent spending cuts, and invest in areas such as transport, housing and flood defences. 

Cllr Donna Jones, Leader of Portsmouth City Council, said: "This is a huge step forwards towards a Solent Combined Authority which would see over £30m a year spent on similar schemes and would mean the three unitary councils working closer together on major projects."

 

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