The leader of the Council, Councillor David Green, is asking you to email him your views on devolution and having an elected mayor.
The Government has said that regions who opt for devolution and directly elected ‘metro mayors’ will be given additional funding and powers over transport, including running local bus companies, infrastructure and economic development, policing and health.
Bradford’s local economy has benefitted from additional funding and a stronger voice in lobbying Government for resources, to support local economic growth and improve infrastructure, as part of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
West Yorkshire and the City Region is an area of 3 million people and 106,000 businesses. It has the largest city region economy in the north – the second largest in the country.
Cllr David Green, Leader of Bradford Council, said:
“The combined resources of the local authorities and business in the region can bring greater economic prosperity when they operate together. Direct benefits to Bradford include: Over 70 companies receiving a total of £5.2 million from the regional Business Growth Programme, over 240 apprenticeships being created, £5.2 million to develop One City Park, investment to construct two new railway stations at Low Moor and Apperley Bridge and the City Connect cycle scheme.
“People don’t live their lives within local authority boundaries and investment in neighbouring areas can also bring direct benefits to our district, for example making travelling to, from and across Bradford District to work much easier.
“Currently 95% of decisions that affect Bradford and our wider region are made in Whitehall by people who have little or no knowledge of our city, district or region. Decisions should be made at regional and local level by people with specific knowledge and understanding of local needs and opportunities.
“Bradford can continue to benefit from regional investment and increased devolved powers over transport, economic development and infrastructure planning.
“We are working within the West Yorkshire Combined Authority to lobby Government hard to get the best possible deal for Bradford and our region in the next round of devolution discussions. We are building on previous achievements which include gaining the country’s largest Growth Deal from the government, and also £420 million to establish a £1 billion fund for important infrastructure projects.
“We are already talking to Bradford District businesses and local organisations to find out what they think about devolution, but I’d also like to hear the views of local people directly:
What devolved powers do you want?
What powers don’t you want devolved to the region?
And are you prepared to have an elected ‘metro-mayor’ in order to gain devolved powers?”
Have your say now
We would like to know what you think about this. Please email your views to the leader of the Council at WYDevolution@bradford.gov.uk by Friday, 3 July 2015.