Transfer of powers to council is put on hold

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Mid and East Antrim Mayor, Councillor Billy Ashe has voiced his disappointment after plans to transfer regeneration powers from Stormont to local councils have been put on hold indefinitely.

The transfer was due to take place in April 2016, following the sweeping reform of local government earlier this year, which saw councils handed a raft of new powers such planning and economic development.

But Social Development Minister Mervyn Storey has announced that regeneration powers will now remain with central government.

Cllr Ashe said: “I am disappointed that the regeneration powers will not transfer to the council.

“However, I am confident that the Minister will continue to find ways of working with councils to deliver local solutions.

“I plan to meet with Minister Storey in the next week to discuss a number of regeneration projects for Mid and East Antrim Borough in light of this decision.”

Cllr Audrey Wales, chair of the economic growth and development committee added: “Mid and East Antrim Borough Council will remain working as a close partner with DSD in the area of regeneration.”