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The region, also known as the government office region, is currently the 'largest area unit' tier of local government sub-national entity of England, with only one, London, having a directly elected assembly.

Elected assemblies Edit

As power was to be devolved to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales without a counterweight in England, a series of referendums were planned to establish elected regional assemblies in some of the regions. The first was held in London in 1998 and was successfully passed. The London Assembly and Mayor of London of the Greater London Authority were created in 2000. A referendum was held in North East England on 4 November 2004 but the proposal for an elected assembly was rejected. Plans to hold further referendums in other regions were then cancelled. The remaining eight regional assemblies are planned to be abolished in 2010 as part of a Sub-National Review of Economic Development and Regeneration with most of their functions transferring to the relevant Regional Development Agency and to local authorities.

Regions and sustainability Edit

  • Local needs met locally can seem an attractive idea to local communities but in practice a whole range of local sustainability issues, such as transport, pollution, food, etc. may have a regional dimension. Effective action is likely to require some sort of regional perspective.

Democratic deficit Edit

A 'democratic deficit' for English regions is a major concern. Sustainability issues cannot even begin to be addressed in a comprehensive way whilst regions seem so remote and disconnected from the lives and concerns of ordinary citizens. Discussion about remedies for this can seem to focus on bureaucratic solutions involving only local government and quangos, rather than solutions which empower or even engage ordinary citizens and communities.

Other criticism Edit

The geographical scope of the regions has also been criticised with claims that places too socio-economically diverse are contained within the same region and regional boundaries have been set without consultation. Alternative proposals include city regions W

City regions Edit

In July 2007, HM Treasury published its Review of sub-national economic development and regeneration, which stated that the government would allow those city regions that wished to work together to form a statutory framework for city regional activity, including powers over transport, skills, planning and economic development [1]. Under the government's Transport Innovation Fund, city regions can band together to pilot forms of road pricing, such as the Manchester Congestion Charge being considered by councils in Greater Manchester.

News Edit

See separate article News Regions of England

Related topics Edit

Related Wkipedia content Edit

  • Regional Spatial Strategy W


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