Have your say on £900m devolution plans

RESIDENTS are being asked to comment on plans for a South Yorkshire mayor to oversee a £900 million devolution of powers from central government.

Politicians and business leaders agreed a deal in principle with chancellor George Osborne in October to give the region more say over its economy.

The devolution covers transport, skills and creating new jobs but is dependent on adopting an elected regional mayor set-up to oversee the budget.

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Rotherham Borough Council leader Cllr Chris Read said: “This proposed deal puts Rotherham on the national stage, prioritising jobs, housing and infrastructure.

“It is a measure of our ambition that we want to be one of the first places to be making these kinds of decisions for ourselves rather than depending on London.

“This consultation is an important opportunity for members of the public to find out more about what’s on the table and to have their say.”

As well as being subject to consultation, the deal must be formally approved by all councils in the region and the Government.

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Cllr Sir Stephen Houghton, chairman of the Sheffield City Region Combined Authority, said: “This deal is ultimately based on our belief that decisions that impact on local people will be better made by local leaders, who live and work locally, rather than by civil servants and ministers in London.”

James Newman, SCR Local Enterprise Partnership chairman, added: “This deal enables our political and business leaders to take decision-making to the next level, making bigger and better local decisions over skills, business growth and infrastructure.”

The consultation is open at www.sheffieldcityregiondevolution.org.uk until January 15.