I attended a board meeting of the Local Enterprise Zone (LEP) on Thursday evening. It was a long meeting. I think I eventually got home at 10 pm having started in the office at 0745 which probably explained my fatigue.
We had 5 presentation of possible sites for an Enteprise Zone (EZ). They were all strong bids for a range of different reasons.
An EZ is important because any business rates paid within the zone will be retained locally rather than going to government as they do now. The LEP can then use this revenue to help promote businesses within the whole of the LEP. Funding streams like this allows us to borrow money for infrastructure projects. An EZ also provides better broadband connectivity, business rates relief for business and faster planning approvals which all help to stimulate and attract business.
After much discussion Alconbury was selected as the project most likely to win the national competition. There are 24 LEP’s and only 10 proposed EZ’s. We are now all working very hard to ensure the Alconbury option is worked up and polished to give us the best chance of winning one of the 10 EZ slots.