Crawley MP Henry Smith has asked for Crawley to be awarded ‘City Deal’ status to help give the town control over its economic growth.
The Government is giving England’s cities new powers and freedoms through City Deals, which gives control over more decisions that affect the area
Mr Smith said City Deal status would help continue Crawley’s economic growth and reduce youth unemployment.
He explained: “A Crawley City Deal would give our town the freedom, power and tools to be really innovative in designing whole new ways of building a stronger regional economy and more affluent community.
“Youth unemployment has more than halved to 3.2 per cent and this City Deal would see local business, civic and education leaders in Crawley reduce that rate even further.
“We can encourage and support more to build on that success by taking on even more trainees and apprentices to ensure that skills and talent remain in our town.”
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg is responsible for awarding City Deals.
Mr Smith wrote to him on Thursday (May 1) to ask him to award Crawley the new status.
Mr Smith informed Mr Clegg that the latest Centre for Cities annual ‘Cities Outlook’ document showed Crawley to be “pro-actively leading the way in the economic recovery”.
Mr Smith backed up this statement figures from the Cities Outlook document, which compares the UK’s 64 cities.
The document states that Crawley had the highest proportion of private sector employment and the lowest proportion of public sector jobs.
Crawley was ranked fifth highest for private sector employment growth and seventh lowest for Job Seeker’s Allowance (JSA) claimant count.
It had the seventh largest business stock and eighth lowest percentage of individuals with no formal qualifications.
It was ranked as offering the third highest weekly earnings; second lowest levels of inequality; and fifth largest life satisfaction increase.