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Javid opens door to future Yorkshire devo deal

Communities secretary Sajid Javid has announced a compromise which could lead to Doncaster and Barnsley councils joining the One Yorkshire devolution deal.

Javid said the two authorities – which had previously forced a deadlock on future devolution plans – would be allowed to join if they agreed to a more limited deal with the Sheffield City Region first.

It is a major change from the government’s previous insistence that neither council could be involved because of their earlier commitments to a South Yorkshire devolution deal.

In a letter, Javid said that if Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield councils agreed to do all that is necessary to fully implement the existing deal, “some or all of the South Yorkshire councils would be free to join that deal subject to certain provisos, particularly that arrangements would be put in place to maintain the integration of transport across South Yorkshire.”

Afterwards, the consent of the elected mayor would be needed to allow any councils to leave the agreement.

“The aim of any compromise, as I see it, should be to open the way for the people and businesses of South Yorkshire to have the full benefits of the Sheffield City Region deal, whilst not in any way precluding your council and others from pursuing their ambitions for a One Yorkshire deal,” Javid wrote.

It comes days before the results of public opinion polls on devolution plans by both Doncaster and Barnsley councils are due to be published.

The pair of authorities were responsible for throwing doubt on the South Yorkshire devolution deal earlier this year when they refused to back the region’s plans.

But the DCLG had previously been clear that it would not be considering a Yorkshire-wide deal after the talks broke down, a stance that Javid has seemingly now changed.

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Paul Hazelgrave   20/12/2017 at 20:54

Sajid Javid talks sense on One Yorkshire Devolution Deal !!!

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