Plans to combine Devon County Council and Torbay Council into a Combined County Authority (CCA) are set to be put on hold due to the general election.

Devon County Council and Torbay Council submitted a proposal to form a CCA to the government at the beginning of May. The deal would see powers and funding for areas such as housing, transport and education transferred to the combined authority.

Both Councils had expected the government to work on the legislation to create the CCA over the summer months with a view to holding the first combined Devon and Torbay CCA meeting in the autumn.

However, this week’s general election announcement is set to change that timetable. As a result of the election, parliament will be dissolved for around  six weeks. This means that members of the House of Commons stop being MPs. Parliamentary work will restart after the election with the new parliament expected to meet on Tuesday July 9.

‘We are seeking clarity from government officials on how the legislative process for setting up the Devon and Torbay Combined County Authority will be affected following the announcement of the general election,’ said Councillor James McInnes, leader of Devon County Council. ‘Both organisations remain committed to bringing forward our agreed devolution agreement as soon as possible,’ he added.

The delays are likely to be welcomed by Devon’s opposition councils with critics of the arrangement worried that district councils will lose out. Some Teignbridge councillors branded the devolution proposals as a ‘nasty and dangerous move’.