South Yorkshire Metro Mayor — Three Policy Priorities for 2022

This briefing sets out three policy priorities for the new metro mayor after the election to address the biggest issues facing South Yorkshire's economy.

Briefing published on 25 April 2022 by Jeffrey Mo

On 5 May 2022, residents of South Yorkshire (previously Sheffield City Region), will return to the polls to elect their metro mayor for the second time.

The next mayor will need to continue on the path laid out by the current metro mayor and take advantage of all of the powers and funding that come with the position, so as to improve the economic performance of South Yorkshire. This will be especially important as the region recovers from the pandemic.

This briefing sets out three policy priorities that the new Mayor of South Yorkshire should focus on:

Policy priority 1: Improve the educational attainment and ambition of young people across South Yorkshire

  • Despite the office’s lack of direct powers in this domain, use the mayor’s profile to champion efforts that raise educational attainment and ambition in young people
  • Promote initiatives such as the Children’s University and Sheffield Futures, and ensure that young people across all of South Yorkshire can access similar programmes

Policy priority 2: Franchise the bus system

  • Conduct a data-led assessment of bus franchising, similar to Greater Manchester’s assessment, in order to convince stakeholders and counter potential opposition
  • Initiate a review of how best to fund bus franchising

Policy priority 3: Ensure development in South Yorkshire supports growth in Sheffield’s city centre

  • Develop a strategy to level up the labour market of Sheffield’s city centre with other city centres’
  • Build new dense, high-quality housing around existing transport links so that residents can get to Sheffield’s city centre quickly

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