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12.10.18

One Yorkshire: Leaders submit another devolution bid with promise of £30bn boost

Local leaders in Yorkshire have asked the government to assist with the delivery of a One Yorkshire devolution deal after a new study has revealed that there is a “coherent Yorkshire economy.”

A devolution deal could reportedly deliver a £30bn a year boost to the region and wider UK and unlock benefits worth up to £5,400 per person, independent research by Steel Economic Development revealed.

The findings have been set out in a case for a One Yorkshire devolution deal submitted to the housing, communities and local government secretary James Brokenshire. In the deal would be a One Yorkshire mayor, to be elected in 2020.

The study found “strong evidence” that Yorkshire is a “coherent economic area” and that “business supports devolution at a regional level.”

Key findings included how historic approaches to local transport might be hindering commuters trying to get to different parts of the region, limiting the full potential of Yorkshire’s strategic assets; and that the Yorkshire ‘brand’ and identity is an important asset in national and international markets.

Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and leader of Bradford Council, said: “In West Yorkshire, we are already making huge progress through the delivery of our £1bn Growth Deal, but to go further and faster in delivering for all our communities we need to take this next step towards devolution.”

Cllr Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council and member of the combined authority, added: “We are presenting a compelling case to the government to work with us to deliver an ambitious devolution deal unlocking significant benefits for our communities and the UK.

“These are ground-up proposals, supported by a clear economic case and which can be taken forward in parallel with the Sheffield City Region deal and therefore meet all the criteria the government has set.”

The One Yorkshire deal was put forward earlier this year after a long process of getting authorities onboard, but the government is refusing to accept it – instead emphasising that any further devolution must first wait for the Sheffield City Region deal to be implemented.

But in July, Yorkshire leaders already looked set to defy this stance after arguing that Brokenshire was just placing obstacles to achieving a settlement.

Want to find out more about the One Yorkshire deal and other devolution proposals for the north? Make sure to attend EvoNorth in February next year.

Top image: Andrew Linscott

 

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