Background to devolution
Chesterfield Borough Council’s leader has pulled the council’s devolution bid to avoid an unnecessary waste of public money on a referendum called by Derbyshire County Council’s leader Councillor Barry Lewis.
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At a meeting in April, our councillors voted that Chesterfield should take this a stage further and apply to become a full member of the Sheffield City Region Combined Authority, which would give us access to a share of a £900 million devolution deal agreed with the Government and £484 million over the next five years.
This recognises the fact that Chesterfield's economic links are largely with the Sheffield City Region area, with much retail, commuting and business done both ways across traditional geographical boundaries.
Similarly, councillors in Bassetlaw in north Nottinghamshire, which also has strong economic links with the Sheffield City Region, have voted for their authority to be a full member of the Sheffield City Region.
At their meeting in April, Chesterfield Borough councillors also voted that Chesterfield should be a non-constituent member of the North Midlands: Nottinghamshire Derbyshire Combined Authority (previously known as D2N2). This area doesn’t have a devolution deal negotiated but the councils involved do work together on key economic issues.
By being involved in both areas we can negotiate the best deals for the people of Chesterfield.
A condition of any devolution deal is that the authorities involved form a ‘combined authority’. A combined authority allows its members to make collective decisions about issues affecting the whole area, but the individual organisations still exist and operate in their own right.
This video by the Local Government Association explains more about combined authorities.