Dan Jarvis, Mayor of the Sheffield City Region, said: “I welcome the steps taken by the Chancellor to protect and create jobs, particularly those that help move us towards net zero emissions. However, the Government risks repeating the mistakes of the past: developing and driving the recovery from a desk in Whitehall. This approach will only take us back to a broken status quo – and hardwire widening regional inequality into our economy.
“Rather than a ‘meal deal’, what we really needed to see was a ‘New Deal’ for the North – a radical shift of powers and resources away from Westminster and Whitehall to South Yorkshire and the North, so that through devolution, we create a stronger, greener, fairer economy and society.
“As a starting point, the Government should be working closely with Metro Mayors in planning our economic renewal, because we are best placed to know what our regions and communities need – we understand our areas best. Over the course of the epidemic the value of a regional approach has been shown – we need to mobilise every bit of our knowledge and networks to beat the pandemic and drive recovery afterwards. But to do this, the government needs to give us the resources and the powers to do it. By working together, we can deliver not just recovery, but renewal for our people, places and businesses.”