YP Letters: We need stronger political voices for North

What now for Yorkshire devolution?
What now for Yorkshire devolution?
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From: Stewart Arnold, Acting Leader, Yorkshire Party, Station Street, Meltham, Holmfirth.

THERESA May is reported to be scrapping elected mayors. We are led to understand that is not because she believes that the ‘Sheffield City Region’ proposal is divisive and undemocratic.

Instead (if we are to believe The Times) she is scrapping elected mayors because she’s worried making politicians in the North too powerful could help the Labour Party recover. To play party politics like that – whatever we might think about mayors or the Labour Party – is a disgrace.

Far from seeking to stop political voices in Yorkshire and the North becoming too strong as the Prime Minister appears to want to do, we, in the Yorkshire Party, want a strong voice for our region, in order to challenge the Westminster Government. We have never supported elected mayors – we believe in real devolution, and for real devolution to work, a directly elected Assembly or Parliament, accountable to the people of the whole of Yorkshire, has to be created.

Elected mayors place far too much power in the hands of one individual, and in the case of the arrangements imposed on Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield, create a system where the public are completely cut out from the decision-making process.