Eden Council is set to throw its support behind the plan for the four north Cumbrian council districts to come together under a new style of local government for the county.

The local authority’s leadership will decide today whether to authorise Eden Council officers to work in partnership with Allerdale Council, Copeland Council and Carlisle City Council to develop a proposal for a new way of organising local government in the county.

A report prepared for this evening’s meeting of the executive outlines the timescale within which the four district councils now must work.

Local government minister Robert Jenrick outlined earlier this month that outline proposals for changes should be submitted by November 9, and full proposals by December 9.

Barrow, South Lakeland and Lancaster’s councils are concurrently working on a separate proposal to merge the three regions into one.

It is the hope of each district council that the Government will give approval to the proposal for the creation of two councils _ one in the north of the county and one in the south – which will come under one elected mayor for Cumbria as a combined authority.

Cumbria County Council however has proposed one single Cumbria-wide council for the county, along existing county boundaries.

This proposal from Government to introduce more elected mayors across England has been proposed as a strategy for helping to “accelerate recovery from the economic and social impacts of the Covid-19" pandemic, the report prepared for Eden’s executive states.

The report adds that the exact strategy from this Government on devolution – the handing over of powers from Westminster to local government – has yet to be outlined in detail.

“It is believed to contain important changes and clarifications such as the power of central government to mandate the creation of unitary authorities rather than by consensus, direction on whether new unitary authorities can cross existing county boundaries and new combined authorities being mayoral by default,” the report states.

A previous attempt at reaching a devolution settlement in Cumbria failed in recent years, when consensus over the form local government should take could not be agreed.

The report adds that “the latest intelligence” suggests the detailed outline from Government on its devolution strategy will be delayed until “after Christmas.”