Page last updated at 09:32 GMT, Monday, 27 April 2009 10:32 UK

Development body faces MP probe

Critics have said Emda has been given too many responsibilities.

The work of the agency responsible for spending millions of pounds in the East Midlands is being investigated by MPs.

They will look at the effectiveness of the East Midlands Development Agency (Emda), the government body responsible for boosting the region.

The new East Midlands Select Committee will hold its first hearing in Nottingham rather than at Westminster.

The agency was set up 10 years ago and has spent almost £1bn - but critics claim it is not accountable.

Its original purpose was to invest in businesses and projects which would benefit the wider economy.

Tough times

The new committee is chaired by the Sherwood MP Paddy Tipping.

"Emda is a big spender - £200m in the last year and that is a lot of money and we want to make sure it is spent wisely and well.

"It is a tough time economically and we want people in Nottinghamshire and across the East Midlands to get a decent deal."

He added: "I have already talked to Emda and they are keen that there is a group of democratically elected politicians looking at their work."

Emda has not commented directly on the committee's work.

The committee will meet in the main chamber at Nottingham County Council's headquarters.

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