Calls for referendum on elected mayor for South Yorkshire

Councillor Rob Murphy
Councillor Rob Murphy
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Sheffield councillors will be asked to vote for a referendum on plans for a new elected mayor for the area.

Sheffield City Region has an in-principle devolution deal for extra powers and £900m over 30 years from Whitehall, which includes a directly elected mayor from 2017.

A new motion by Green councillors has been submitted to Sheffield Council’s full meeting on Wednesday objecting to the imposition of an elected mayor.

The motion notes that voters in Sheffield rejected the idea of an elected mayor for the city in a 2012 referendum, and calls for any city region mayor to be subject to a further vote.

Green councillors are also calling for Sheffield councillors of all parties to be given a free vote on the issue when the Sheffield City Region devolution deal comes before the council for debate and approval.

Councillor Rob Murphy, speaker for the Green group of councillors, said: “It will be a sad day for democracy if our local leaders ignore the 2012 referendum result. The result was clear and Labour need to listen.

“It is not unusual for Conservative governments to ignore the will of Sheffield people.

“But we elect our councillors to stand up for our views, not sell them out for a few crumbs from the Westminster table.”