West Yorkshire Mayor reacts to Prime Ministers speech on levelling up

The people of West Yorkshire were looking forward to hearing the Prime Minister finally lay out his strategy that backs up the often-uttered phrase ‘levelling up’. Sadly, what we got today was a speech full of platitudes, empty on detail.

Responding to the Prime Minister’s levelling up announcement Mayor of West Yorkshire, Tracy Brabin, said:

The people of West Yorkshire were looking forward to hearing the Prime Minster finally lay out his strategy to back up the often-uttered phrase ‘levelling up’.

Sadly, what we got today was a speech empty on detail.

We’ve had so much rhetoric from Government over the past few years. Now as a new Mayor in place, ready and eager to deliver, it is vital we have the strategy and the detail in place.

Whilst it is exciting to be able to make changes in my community through devolution such as improving the bus network and creating thousands of jobs and building affordable homes – there are still gaps.

To make levelling up truly meaningful, we need more than Government rebadging previously announced funds. We need long-term funding, rather than short-term bidding wars with our neighbours, the powers to tackle the climate emergency locally and timely decisions from Government on rail projects.

Make no mistake, I am ready and willing to work with Government, to go faster and further for the people of West Yorkshire. To do that we will need the detail.

I look forward to working closely with ministers to dig deeper into their priorities so I can deliver a fair and just recovery from Covid.

West Yorkshire has so much to give – its people, its places, its ideas, and its talents.

And we stand ready to deliver.