The question of devolution is a big one, and it’s absolutely right the community poll will let the public decide what form our deal should take; it’s great to see Barnsley Council put their trust in local people.
For too long Barnsley and Yorkshire have been neglected and ignored by this Government, whilst other cities and regions prosper.
And now we’re faced with a number of challenges that may have profound implications for our town’s future.
So most importantly, it’s crucial we negotiate a devolution deal that provides key investment in infrastructure and skills so that we’re no longer left behind.
But for my part, I think it’s time we tackled these challenges head-on, and we’re bold and ambitious about what we can achieve as a community.
It shouldn’t be enough that we’re happy to just no longer be left behind. Let’s instead strive to lead from the front like Yorkshire always should.
We should be seeking the biggest deal that gives us the most clout, and the opportunity to compete nationally and internationally.
And it’s as part of a strong One Yorkshire arrangement that allows us to demand a devolution deal that would deliver the level of benefits our county and people need.
This is a deal we’ll have to live with for generations, and we’ll only get one chance to decide.
So why not make the most of it and aim for the biggest and best deal we can get, and that’s One Yorkshire.