Our public services are uniting to make Wirral jobs and businesses a priority, as part of a new spending push to put more local money back into the borough.
Known as ‘community wealth building,’ Wirral Council has partnered with The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) to deliver the new programme, which will review all council spending and provide a boost of more than £10 million to the local economy.
Wirral already performs better than most other areas for keeping spend local, with 34p out of every £1 spent being invested with local firms. The project with CLES is designed to increase that figure significantly, focusing on procurement, employment, use of assets and deepening democracy.
Cllr Janette Williamson, cabinet member for finance and resources, said:
“Everyone agrees – creating economic growth is good for an area. We all want to help create jobs, prosperity and local wealth in every area of our business.
“We’re having some real success. We’re seeing local employers grow and win new business, we’re seeing more businesses relocate or start up in Wirral. The developments through Wirral Growth Company will see many more new businesses, jobs and opportunities.
“Our job now is to make sure the surge in the local economy is enjoyed by our residents. These new jobs, these new opportunities, must be felt by the people who already live in Wirral. We’ve seen the success from places such as Preston where they’ve launched this kind of thing, and we believe we can do an even better job in Wirral.
“For us it is absolutely clear: economic growth is good – inclusive growth is great.”
The total local economic boost is likely to be much more than the £10 million target, with every public agency in Wirral now signed up to work on the programme: including NHS bodies, Wirral Metropolitan College and the local Chamber of Commerce.
Initially, the project will focus on procurement to help invest more of the council’s spend inside the local economy. It will also involve speaking to other local organisations such as the Metropolitan College, housing associations, and big local businesses about their appetite to work together to build local wealth and improve wellbeing for residents.