Partnership welcomes final step for Combined Authority Plan

Proposals for a new joined up body of local authorities, to manage investment worth £1.5bn in the City Region’s transport and economic infrastructure has been sent to Government for final approval.

The Combined Authority proposal has been agreed by Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield Councils as well as the Integrated Transport Authority and covers membership, voting, powers, functions, scrutiny and funding.

Subject to approval from the Secretaries of State for Transport and Communities and Local Government, from April 2014 the Combined Authority will become a driving force for economic growth by providing a joint approach to strategic investment and transport.

The proposals include the City of York Council as a partner member to ensure effective links with the wider economic area. The Combined Authority will also work closely with the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) board on developing a shared economic strategy. The LEP has also formally accepted an invitation to become a partner member.

This would put West Yorkshire and the wider Leeds City Region in a much stronger position to boost jobs and growth and have a collective voice with Whitehall.

Councillor Keith Wakefield, Chair of the Association of West Yorkshire Authorities said: “We have the opportunity to unlock significant new powers and funding agreed through the City Deal and with the public and private sectors working together, we are in a better position to ensure our shared ambition for economic growth for West Yorkshire and the wider City Region are achieved.”