Mayor of West Yorkshire responds to Chancellor's Spring Statement

The Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, has given her reaction to today’s Spring Statement, by the Chancellor Rishi Sunak

The Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, has given her reaction to today’s Spring Statement, by the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak. She commented:

“It’s very disappointing that the Chancellor has chosen not to provide any direct support for the lowest income families, at a time when rising inflation is cutting the value of their wages and the benefits they receive.

“The changes to taxes announced today will benefit higher income households the most. At a time when people in West Yorkshire are facing extremely tough decisions about their everyday costs such as meeting the cost of soaring energy bills, clothing their children, or doing the weekly food shop, this is the wrong choice to be making.”

“To the people across our region, who face this cost-of-living crisis, today’s statement will feel like a sticking plaster over a much bigger problem.”

To the people across our region, who face this cost-of-living crisis, today’s statement will feel like a sticking plaster over a much bigger problem.

Tracy Brabin Mayor of West Yorkshire

And on the announcement today that the government is launching the second round of the Levelling Up Fund and inviting bids for this funding, the Mayor added:

“Any new money for our region is welcome. However, this falls short of the investment that West Yorkshire really needs. It’s frustrating that the government continues to insist on these ‘beauty contests’, where regions must compete against each other for short-term funding, before this money can be invested where it needs to be.

“If the government were truly committed to devolution, they would put these vital spending powers in the hands of local leaders.

“And it’s also disappointing that there has been no announcement from the Chancellor today about how much West Yorkshire will receive from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

“This is the fund the government created, to replace the money the region previously received from the European Union. We understand we need to submit our investment plans for this by the summer and if we don’t hear anything soon, the government should rethink the timescales for this".