On Wednesday 21 July the Government announced that the new local government model for North Yorkshire is the proposal submitted by North Yorkshire County Council.
This model will see the seven district and borough councils (Hambleton, Harrogate, Selby, Scarborough, Craven, Ryedale and Richmondshire) combine with the county to make one single unitary authority, with no changes to the existing City of York Council.
We are very aware that this is a challenging announcement for many people and organisations, and we know we can work together to harness the potential and the possibilities this new local government structure will present.
We will be working with partners to help the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector and rural communities across North Yorkshire benefit from the changes. Our work will be based on supporting the new structure to bring about:
- A fairer system that will address the need to close the gap and help level up communities experiencing inequalities.
- A structure to enable effective local working with communities and organisations from all sectors across the county.
- Increased opportunities for collaboration with key partners with an interest in developing healthier, fairer and more resilient communities through the development of even more impactful services, which invest in and make use of all of our community assets within and across places.
- An enhanced focus on addressing rural issues and needs, for example; transport, access to services and the further development of community led housing.
- Holistic approaches to respond effectively to the current and changing needs of the people and communities across North Yorkshire.
We know that there will be concerns among VCSE organisations, notably around transition to the new arrangements and what funding arrangements will be in place. We also know the decision will have an impact on many valued colleagues and partners across North Yorkshire, and we will do our utmost to support them through any challenges.
We will continue to be vocal advocates in line with our charitable purpose, and for the early clarification and confirmation of funding streams to avoid any unintended detriment to VCSE organisations and the people they support.
Building on our strong relationships with key partners and stakeholders across North Yorkshire, we look forward to continuing to work with our current and future contacts to make North Yorkshire an even happier, fairer, healthier place to live and work.
The new unitary council is expected to assume the full range of authority responsibilities on the 1 April 2023.
View the statement made by Robert Jenrick.