Sheffield City Region Mayor, Dan Jarvis and local leaders in South Yorkshire are to approve a ground-breaking stimulus worth up to £860 million to revitalise the area’s economy and transform the region.
The Mayor said he and local leaders were ‘rewriting the rule book’ with the South Yorkshire Renewal Fund in order to meet the seismic economic challenge posed by Covid-19.
The investment, heralded a ‘New Deal for South Yorkshire’, is hoped will unleash South Yorkshire’s potential and deliver recovery and renewal for the region after the pandemic.
It will invest hundreds of millions of pounds into schemes to protect, create and attract thousands of jobs, train workers and apprentices, back businesses to locate and grow in the region, transform infrastructure by building up South Yorkshire’s transport network and revitalising its high streets and towns.
The £860m investment is made up of £358m Mayoral Combined Authority (MCA) funding for South Yorkshire’s recovery in 2021/22, meaning direct support for:
- Jobs and apprenticeships, as well as helping people find them.
- Helping businesses to survive and thrive.
- Revitalising high streets and building homes.
- Getting people moving with better transport, by foot, bike, bus, tram and train
- Protecting the planet by retrofitting homes and improving flood defences
This includes the MCA’s first year’s use of ‘gainshare’, with investment in infrastructure, flood defences, buses and active travel.
From 2022 and following agreement with HM Treasury, the MCA will borrow against its gainshare to create the South Yorkshire Renewal Fund, worth up to £500m and will roughly be split between:
- £300m of investment in places, including infrastructure and transport.
- £200m of funding for jobs and skills in South Yorkshire.
Commenting, Sheffield City Region Mayor, Dan Jarvis said: “Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. Despite the challenges Covid throws at us, our plan sends a crystal-clear message of ambition and confidence that South Yorkshire is open for business and ready to prosper. The government may not be willing to back our region, but local leaders and I will not stand by and let our potential be squandered.
“That’s why we’re rewriting the rule book, using powers and resources secured from Westminster to invest in our people, our businesses and our towns and high streets. This is the power of devolution, it means we can deliver on the priorities of our people, jobs, apprenticeships, better buses, new flood defences, stronger transport links and revitalised high streets and town centres.
“We’re working to create a stronger, greener, fairer South Yorkshire for all , delivering not just recovery, but renewal. Not just a bigger economy, but a better one. We know South Yorkshire’s people and industry rightly have enormous pride in our story so far. We’re reinforcing our reputation as the heartland of British industry and innovation and we’re making our region an even better place to live, work and invest.
“We’ve started to transform South Yorkshire and we believe that our best days lie ahead of us. That’s why we’re creating the South Yorkshire Renewal Fund, a comprehensive plan to unlock the potential of our people, businesses and places, so everyone can have a stake in our future prosperity. We will deliver a ‘New Deal for South Yorkshire’.”