Zone’s price tag ‘worth paying’

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The new enterprise zone in Hull could cost taxpayers up to £100,000 a year.

A report says making a local development order - which allows councils to simplify the planning process for developers - will cost £100,000, which hasn’t been budgeted for. It could cost the council up to the same amount a year through lost revenue from planning applications.

Enterprise zones - which in Hull cover Alexandra Dock, earmarked for the Siemens wind turbine factory, and Queen Elizabeth Dock - are expected to attract new business by offering business rate discounts, tax incentives, superfast broadband as well as simplified planning.

Coun Steve Bayes said: “It’s a price worth paying if we get that level of investment and jobs into the city.”

Coun Bayes said he understood the cynicism about the zones, which have been accused of simply displacing jobs from one area to another but said: “It’s not taking jobs from anywhere else in the UK or Europe. Wind farms of this size have bever been built anywhere in the world in these sorts of conditions. Hull will benefit from new jobs rather than replaced jobs.”