LEPs are partnerships between local authorities and businesses and play a central role in determining local economic priorities and undertaking activities to drive growth and the creation of local jobs.
Prior to LEPs, public sector-led Regional Development Agencies (RDAs) were responsible for regeneration, regional competitiveness, and the development of skills. LEPs now promote a business-led and more locally responsive agenda.
Since their formation in 2011, the role of LEPs has expanded with each LEP now responsible for producing a strategic economic plan for their area, identifying barriers and solutions to growth and working with local partners to improve their business environment.
LEPs are non-statutory bodies. This means they can look and operate very differently from each other, in terms of size, capacity and governance. All LEPs must be chaired by a business person and at least half of the members must come from the private sector.
LEPs have responsibility for bidding for central government funding and influencing local funding streams and ensuring that these deliver against the locally agreed priorities.
Funding from Europe brings further resources to LEP areas. The European Structural and Investments Funds Growth Programme runs until 2020 and is split across a number of different funds. Organisations from all sectors are able to bid for the funding. LEPs do not deliver projects themselves.
Our vision is to “accelerate business-led economic growth in Hertfordshire” and for Hertfordshire to become a world-leading economy; one of the top three in the country outside London.
We bring together key partners from business, academia and local government to help create economic growth and jobs by investing in our people, places and businesses. We will strive to ensure that the EU and public sector investments are harnessed effectively to deliver the best return for business and the wider community.
Strategic leader: the LEP Board sets the vision.
Partner: we create the networks for partnership working.
Investor: we secure significant investment.
Advocate: we bring the voice of Herts business to Westminster.