MPs have agreed plans to give the Sheffield city region combined authority an elected mayor, but areas outside South Yorkshire, such as Chesterfield, are excluded for now.
On Wednesday (20 July) the House of Commons passed without debate an order creating the position of mayor for the combined authority, with the first election to be held in May 2017.
Chesterfield BC wants to join the Sheffield CR devo bid
The order sets the first mayoral term for a duration of three years, with the next election in May 2020, followed by four-year terms.
At a Commons committee on Tuesday, communities and local government minister Andrew Percy told MPs: ‘As a proud Yorkshireman, it is very nice for one of my first acts in this role to be devolving power and some funding away from Westminster and up to Yorkshire, where it will be better dealt with.’
Responding to questions about the stated intention of other areas to join the combined authority, Mr Percy said: ‘I can confirm that there is a consultation out at the moment to expand the area, including Chesterfield, Bassetlaw and other councils in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.
‘We would have to table an order to extend the area and we would expect that to happen later this year. Those areas will be included if they choose to join the mayoral model before the elections. Their electors will then take part in the mayoral elections next year. It would be wrong to include them after that, in my view.’
He added: ‘I commend the order as the start of an exciting process for South Yorkshire, north Nottinghamshire and north Derbyshire.’
Last week it emerged that Derbyshire CC had written a letter before claim to the combined authority, threatening legal action, alleging that its consultation was so ‘misleading and flawed’ that it should be withdrawn.
The county council is opposing attempts by Chesterfield BC to join the Sheffield devolution bid as this would put transport and other services that it currently runs in the town under the control of a Sheffield mayor.