Fareham Borough Council Leader, Cllr Sean Woodward, has called for all organisations in the area to work together. The call comes ahead of Hampshire's Cabinet meeting on Monday 6 June to consider a consultation on options for local government in Hampshire.
Cllr Woodward said: "There is the potential for our region to reap great benefits for residents and businesses alike. The Government is offering the Solent region £30M a year for the next 30 years, and we need to make sure we all work together to secure this and get the most out of it.
"Hampshire's plans, which will be put to the Cabinet, will save money through local government reorganisation; there are benefits to be had through that approach but it is far more important that we bring these new funds and powers from government to our local area. Government funding has reduced by over 50% since 2008 and all councils have had to respond. At Fareham we have managed to reduce the net cost of providing services by over £3M which equates to a 25% cost reduction and we are on track to reduce costs even further, by another £1M, over the next three years through innovative service delivery and careful investment
"There's no reason we can't both make savings within what we have and attract additional money through a combined authority, but people need to work together."
Fareham Borough Council is one of eight councils working on plans for a Solent Combined Authority which is expected to bring £900M of government funding into the region in the next 30 years to invest in economic growth and housing.
The combined authority would only manage the new powers and funding granted by government, it would not take the place of any of the councils involved which would continue to operate as they currently do.
East Hampshire District Council, Eastleigh Borough Council, Fareham Borough Council, Gosport Borough Council, Havant Borough Council, Isle of Wight Council, Portsmouth City Council and Southampton City Council would all be represented on the board of the new authority which would be headed by a directly elected mayor.
The combined authority and its mayor would also have responsibility for strategic planning; increasing business productivity; creating better jobs and more jobs; adult education and training; a dedicated transport budget; franchised bus services; the key route network of local authority roads; and delivering 52,000 homes in the next 10 years.
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