How our proposal would benefit businesses in North Yorkshire.

North Yorkshire has a vibrant, diverse economy that is home to a wide variety of exciting businesses of all sizes. Devolution offers York and North Yorkshire a unique opportunity to rebuild local government to support communities and businesses better and to make it simpler and more efficient to deliver services.

Alongside local government reorganisation, devolution in North Yorkshire will deliver a 30-year government deal with around £2.4 billion to invest in infrastructure. This will bring stability and world class aspiration for York and North Yorkshire.

Breaking up North Yorkshire and the City of York would threaten great brand names, cause huge disruption and delay a devolution deal. It is vital we seize this opportunity now to supercharge economic development, as we drive post-pandemic recovery for all our local market towns across North Yorkshire.

Cutting through the red tape

Businesses would only ever need to deal with one council. It would mean an end to having to deal with several councils with different roles and policies.

It would be business-friendly and streamlined, with strong local services and systems - the same for businesses in Skipton as for those in Scarborough - and a single organisation responsible for economic development, housing, planning, highways, trading standards and other essential services.

To ensure that there are decision-making powers on a local level, a single authority for North Yorkshire would work closely with parish and town councils, enabling them to run services, where they wanted to, that we would fund. We would put in place new ways of working with communities, understanding the issues and driving the change that is needed.

The clarity of one council working for the public and businesses will make that council more accountable.

Delivering on business priorities

Devolution will enable us to:

  • prioritise funding for the right schemes to support economic growth
  • deliver sector-based support for business growth and supply chains
  • coordinate attracting and retaining skilled workers
  • increase skills development for our labour market of almost 300,000 people
  • streamline support for accessing grants and loans with a single approach to business rate allocation and rate relief
  • offer more seamless and efficient collaboration on research between universities, research institutions and the public and private sectors

Connecting North Yorkshire to the world

High-quality connections are fundamental to our economic future. They are necessary to attract business, to help business to expand and to enable people to work flexibly. They are essential to national and international supply networks vital for many of our businesses.

A single authority would focus on delivering key projects to upgrade transport and communications infrastructure across the county, region and world. 

Already North Yorkshire is at the forefront of bringing superfast broadband to the remotest parts of our county and this year became a partner in a £6 million pilot exploring how superfast mobile connectivity can bring benefits to rural communities.

Connectivity would be key to a new single council, including:

  • better road and rail links, speeding up access to regional airports, ports on the Humber and the proposed Teesside Freeport, and east to west across the county
  • the introduction of 5G wireless and the eradication of digital not-spots, opening our rural areas to new and expanding businesses

Investment and innovation

Investment strategies will promote the whole county’s economic strengths and opportunities to the world and build on the global brand of North Yorkshire. We will encourage a culture of innovation and growth from incubator hubs to support new business growth and development zones to support established, linked industries.

Planning to succeed

A single council will allow us to simplify planning, creating one strategy to set out housing numbers, employment land allocations, development opportunities and the associated infrastructure needs.

A single council for North Yorkshire, partnered with the City of York in a devolved combined authority and working closely with York and North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership, is the best way to serve businesses with a strong, resounding voice in Westminster and around the world.