In line with the government’s emerging agenda of devolving more power down to the local level the Government Office of the South East (GOSE) will see staff reductions and a changing role. What does it mean for Brighton & Hove?
A Treasury review of the role of Government Offices (GO) has recommended that their main function of administration of grant programmes is reduced in favour of policy and strategic expertise supporting those strategic and delivery bodies to whom decision-making has been devolved while providing honest, high-quality feedback to central government.
This will mean a significant reduction in employment “reducing overall staff by at least 33 per cent” and the need to develop closer links with agencies that operate at ground level. GOs will be expected to build on their work in negotiating Local Area Agreements (LAAs) and to draw on their local expertise and knowledge to feedback and to challenge both regional partners (like the regional development agency -SEEDA) and government departments.
The south east is a large area and if staffing levels for the region are to be reduced by up to one third Government Offices will be obliged to rely heavily on those agencies with well developed local knowledge. Obviously this will include the regional development agency (RDA) and local authorities but it must also enhance the role of the 11 Economic Partnerships that have an unmatched knowledge of their local economies.
The Brighton & Hove Economic Partnership (BHEP) will be meeting with the new Regional Director of GOSE - Rolande Anderson - on May 25th.
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Brighton & Hove Economic Partnership
Government Office for the South East