Discussions have begun over how almost £17m of Government levelling-up funding will be spent in North Yorkshire.

The county has been allocated £16.9m over three years from the Government’s Shared Prosperity Fund.

This replaces EU Strategic Investment Funds - cash that was available before Brexit - and aligns with the Government’s levelling-up objectives.

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The county needs to submit a high-level investment plan for its funding to the Government by August 1 for approval.

The county council and seven district and borough councils are working closely on the plan, which from April 1 next year will be administered by the new single North Yorkshire Council.

A Local Partnership Group created to develop the investment plan held its first meeting on Thursday (June 16).

County council leader Carl Les, who chairs the partnership, said: “The main objective of this fund is to build people’s pride in their communities and to increase opportunities for residents and businesses.

"We are looking at how we can best support these aims across three priority areas.

“Our focus will be on enabling places to restore community spaces and create the foundations for economic development at a neighbourhood level, supporting local businesses to thrive, innovate and grow and helping to reduce the barriers people of any age may face in moving towards employment and education."

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The council is also bidding for North Yorkshire to be included in a Government pilot to provide electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

The bid would see 70 chargers installed in rural areas around the county, with two sites in each of the seven districts and selected sites being areas lacking off-street parking or having high grid connection costs.

The charging points would be powered by renewable energy, including small-scale hydroelectric generators and solar panels linked to battery storage

If successful, the council would receive £2m from the Government to invest in the charging points.


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