New Sheffield City Region Mayor in limbo until deal is agreed

We now have an elected Mayor but he doesn't have any powers - and he can't touch the £30m waiting to be spent on South Yorkshire.

Wednesday, 9th May 2018, 3:49 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th May 2018, 3:51 pm
New Sheffield City Region Mayor Dan Jarvis

Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis was elected as the first Sheffield City Region Mayor last week but has stalled immediately because of rows between the four council leaders in Sheffield, Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham.

While other Metro Mayors elected last year have celebrated their first anniversary with list of achievements, our region remains in limbo.

Sheffield and Rotherham are happy with a Sheffield City Region Mayor but Doncaster and Barnsley want the term of office reduced from four years to two years and for a One Yorkshire Mayor covering the whole of the county.

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In the meantime, South Yorkshire doesn’t get any of the £1 billion funding promised by the Government. Mr Jarvis should receive £30m a year to spend in the region - but it’s just sitting at the Treasury until the four councils agree a deal.

Simon Jeffrey, policy officer with Centre for Cities, says Mr Jarvis has a clear mandate and the four leaders should settle this once and for all.

“The fact that there is a Mayor in place, that he had 150,000 votes and because his powers are relying on their agreement, makes the chances of it happening even stronger.

“It’s been the first anniversary of other Metro Mayors and they are using it to talk about their powers. Other Mayors have been able to make policies and spend money so it will be a real shame if Sheffield City Region has the money and the Mayor but can’t do that. All the time the money is not being used, is time that’s being lost.”

What have other Mayor’s done in their first year?

Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham

Received money from the government for new homeless shelters

Secured a £50m housing deal this year to clean up land so that it can be developed for affordable housing

Introduced half price bus passes for 16-18 year olds

Secured Government funding for 27 new trams

Employed 200 more neighbourhood police officers

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street

Major investment in building new homes with a £350m investment

Metro extension - cash received six months after the Mayor came to office after 25 years of talks

Best job creation numbers for all the UK in the first quarter of the year

Jobs created in advanced manufacturing, life sciences, digital and creative sectors

Development of the HS2 College which is training railway engineers, bricklayers, plasterers and other building trades

Liverpool Mayor Steve Rotherham

Secured £5m to support digital and creative businesses

Invested £3.4 million a train maintenance and repair facility, creating hundreds of jobs

Built a new £13m station and a £19m interchange scheme, new station building and park and ride facility

Constructing a new £19m railway line

Delivering £5m for culture

Securing £234m in additional government funding to modernise transport network and connect to HS2

Securing a share of £28m from government to help homelessness