Wakefield takes step forward in devolution deal as public consultation goes ahead

The delivery of the £1.8 billion West Yorkshire devolution deal has taken a significant step forward after Wakefield Council’s Cabinet agreed to move forward with a public consultation on the creation of a mayoral combined authority.

All five West Yorkshire councils have now approved the scheme, prepared by the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, and now a public consultation into the proposals has begun.

The consultation is providing people with the chance to have their say on how the implementation of the deal would work as well as sharing the proposals and ambitions.

Responses to the public consultation, which will be open for eight weeks until 19 July, will be considered by West Yorkshire councils and the Combined Authority in August, before they are submitted to the Government as part of the parliamentary process to create the new mayoral combined authority.

Denise Jeffery
Cllr Denise Jeffery

Cllr Denise Jeffery, Leader of Wakefield Council, said: “This is an important milestone in delivering the £1.8 billion West Yorkshire devolution deal, which will give us greater decision-making powers on real issues that affect our residents and communities.

“The importance of this deal has only grown as our district responds to the coronavirus pandemic and plans for the recovery of our economy and our communities. The additional funding unlocked by this deal and the freedoms it provides to make major decisions will be crucial as we shape a recovery that ensures all our communities are supported and strengthened.

“The public consultation will ensure that this deal really is fit for purpose for our residents. I hope as many of you as possible take the opportunity to have your say on this deal and the future it can help us deliver.”

The West Yorkshire devolution deal, the biggest ever of its kind, unlocks £1.8 billion of investment for West Yorkshire. It will ensure that Wakefield residents benefit from improvement to transport across the district, improved skills and stronger businesses, while tackling the climate emergency. 

It will also see the creation of a West Yorkshire Mayor, to be elected in May 2021. By becoming a devolved Mayoral area, the Wakefield district is best placed to access future funding and powers.

People who live, work or spend time in Wakefield are all encouraged to take part in the consultation, which the Combined Authority has developed in partnership with leading research agency Ipsos-MORI and the Consultation Institute.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Combined Authority will be unable to undertake any face-to-face consultation, however people will be able to respond to the consultation by a number of methods:

More information can be found at www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/devolution