Councillors in Yorkshire and Humberside’s Regional Assembly are
considering hiring a lobbying agency to make sure that they have some
control over their new Regional Development Agency (RDA).
Yorkshire and Humberside has made an initial approach to around 15
lobbying agencies, asking for suggestions on how the organisation would
present its case, and an estimate on fees.
Nine RDAs will be established across England next April in preparation
for being up and running in 1999. They will have a remit over issues
like regeneration, environment and transport.
Their relationship to regional assemblies has not been decided. The
issue of RDAs is expected to generate fierce lobbying, because they
could take on some responsibilities from government departments, local
authorities and training and enterprise councils.
The Government has said that in the short term the agencies will be
appointed by ministers. Eventually regional chambers could be
established with members from local government and local businesses.
Members of the Yorkshire and Humberside assembly will decide in November
whether to appoint an agency and whether to do so in conjunction with
other assemblies, or with the Local Government Association.
The Government is due to outline its policy on RDAs in a white paper to
be published in November, and the assembly wants to be ready to lobby
soon after it appears.