A FULL and frank debate about devolution and what it could bring to the region will be aired on local radio this week.
Rotherham Council leader Cllr Chris Read and Sheffield City Council leader Julie Dore took part in Monday night’s discussion, which will go out on BBC Radio Sheffield at 9am on Friday.
They were joined by Keighley MP John Grogan and Craven District Council’s Richard Foster, who represented the Yorkshire-wide argument after Barnsley Council leader Cllr Sir Steve Houghton and Doncaster Mayor Ros Jones refused to take part in the debate, hosted by Radio Sheffield’s Toby Foster.
Advertiser editor Andrew Mosley, Star and Doncaster Free Press editor Nancy Fielder and the Barnsley Chronicle’s Mike Cotton attended the media-organised discussion surrounding whether a deal should be pursued for Sheffield City Region or Yorkshire as a whole.
Advertiser editor Mr Mosley said: “The debate was really open and interesting and is well worth listening to on Friday.
“A lot of people probably don’t know what the Sheffield City Region deal or Yorkshire devolution is or could mean and I certainly came away with a lot more knowledge than I went in with.”
Barnsley and Doncaster backed out of the long-discussed Sheffield City Region £900m devolution deal, offering new powers and a metro-mayor, to pursue the One Yorkshire proposal covering the county. They are now due to hold public consultations as to whether residents want to pursue a deal for One Yorkshire or a devolved South Yorkshire.
The Government has repeatedly said Barnsley and Doncaster can never join a wider Yorkshire scheme because all four councils signed up to the Sheffield City Region deal, which was enacted in Parliament.