08Is the metro mayor just another layer of government bureaucracy?
Agreeing to a metro mayor also means agreeing to a combined authority, which necessarily adds a new layer to local government. It creates a new role, that of the metro mayor, in addition to local authority leaders, existing city mayors and – depending on whether the local area agrees to merge the two roles or not – police and crime commissioners.
With this new metro mayor layer comes a suite of additional strategic powers to support economic growth previously not available at the local level. These new powers need to be exercised across and with the consent of a number of local authorities because in the majority of cases they affect issues like transport and planning, which span across local authority boundaries. For example a new commuter train line might link homes and workplaces in different areas; the metro mayor will have powers to decide where these train lines and homes go.