A devolution deal of over £1.8 billion of investment for West Yorkshire communities has been agreed and has now been formally legislated as an Order in Parliament.
This means the West Yorkshire Combined Authority will transition to be a Mayoral Combined Authority (MCA) from February 2021, and a Mayor will be elected on 6 May 2021 to represent West Yorkshire.
Police and Crime functions will be included as part of the Mayor’s overall responsibilities and some of these functions may be delegated to a Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime appointed by the Mayor.
To support the Mayor and/or a Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, the Office of PCC (OPCC) will transfer to the Mayoral West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
You can find out more about the transition to the Mayor’s Office, and how it may affect you below.
What is Devolution?
What changes can I expect to the OPCC?
How does it affect me?
As the PCC, I have always maintained that an overall devolution deal is right for West Yorkshire and that the directly elected Mayor model being promoted provides long overdue additional resources, but also the mandate needed to do more across a range of services. Importantly the direct accountability of the PCC role would be maintained in the Mayoral model which is part of an evolving wider governance model in the region and in England and Wales.
I am engaged and working with West Yorkshire Police and wider partners for the best outcome under the future new arrangements. It will be a significant change and it’s important that we build on the good progress made to ensure that Policing and community safety accountability is central to meeting the needs and priorities of our communities in West Yorkshire.
The time for full transition will come in due course and we will manage that transition with the Combined Authority, elected Mayor and our wider partners responsibly, according to appropriate and statutory governance needs for policing and community safety more generally.
West Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner
What is devolution?
On 11 March 2020 West Yorkshire leaders and Government signed a devolution deal for West Yorkshire.
The deal sets out the new powers, funding and responsibilities which will be transferred from central Government to the West Yorkshire Mayor and Combined Authority.
The Mayor of West Yorkshire will have a similar role to the Mayors of Greater Manchester, Liverpool City Region, and other regions in England with devolution deals and will work alongside the leaders of the five councils in West Yorkshire (Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, and Wakefield).
The election of the Mayor will also change the way police and crime matters are overseen in West Yorkshire. Police and Crime functions will be included as part of the Mayor’s overall responsibilities and some of these functions may be delegated to a Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime appointed by the Mayor.
The election of the Mayor has been made possible through a devolution deal, which was agreed by the West Yorkshire’s five council leaders and the Government in March 2020 and became law in January 2021.
On 6 May 2021, residents of West Yorkshire will be able to vote for the first ever Mayor of West Yorkshire.
What changes can I expect to the OPCC?
The Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner will become part of the Mayor’s office after the election, on 10th May 2021. The core functions of the office will continue unchanged but it will then be known as part of the Mayor’s Office and no longer referred to as the OPCC.
You can expect to see some changes including new contact information, a new website and website address.
How does it affect me?
The core work of the PCC/OPCC importantly will continue and remains ‘business as usual’ as we prepare for transfer to the Mayoral Combined Authority delivering against the priorities set out in the refreshed Police and Crime Plan 2021/22
This includes commissioned victims services contracts, key forums and accountability structures with West Yorkshire Police, Police and Crime Panel, Independent Custody Visiting scheme, Association of Police and Crime Commissioners, NPAS, Modern Slavery Networks, Violence Reduction Unit, Regional Collaboration, Counter Terrorism networks and ongoing work with partners including the Local Criminal Justice Board (LCJB), Community Safety Partnerships (CSPs), Domestic and Sexual Abuse Board (DSA), Reducing Reoffending Boards and the continuation of my Safer Communities Fund (SCF) and Youth Advisory Group (YAG) amongst others.
Members of the public
Contact information for the office will change. This information will be added to this page in due course. The core functions of the office will continue unchanged.
Active casework or complaint
Any active complaints or casework with the OPCC when the transition to the Mayor’s office happens will transfer to the Mayor’s office. They will continue to be actioned by the Casework Team and you should not see any disruption to the process.
Partner agencies and commissioned services
The work of the OPCC is continuing and remains ‘business as usual’ as we prepare for transfer to the Mayor’s Office. Services and contracts will at the moment stay the same. As soon as more information becomes available around what the Mayoral model and policing model will look like going forward we will provide further updates.
Partners, communities and individuals we engage with?
Our regular partnership meetings and scheduled engagements will continue and all engagement opportunities we be shared on our website.
Safer Communities Fund recipients
Any recipients of funding from the Safer Communities Fund should be assured that the terms of their grant will remain unaltered.
On 25th March we will enter the 6-week pre-election period in the run-up to the election for a Mayor for West Yorkshire on Thursday 6th May.
The election itself is being managed by Leeds Council and the Combined Area Returning Officer (CARO) is their Chief Executive Tom Riordan.
During the pre-election period, the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) remains in office and conducts business as usual, although there are some restrictions on what he/this office can do during this time.
The incumbent PCC Mark Burns-Williamson’s term of office as PCC will end at midnight on 9 May and the Mayor will take office from 10 May which is when the Office of the PCC will become part of the West Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority.
- For enquiries relating to normal Office of the PCC business, please contact [email protected]
- For enquiries relating to the election itself, such as venues, dates, procedure, media accreditation etc. please contact [email protected], so that it can be centrally coordinated/ monitored and the appropriate response provided.
- The MCA have published information for candidates on their website at https://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/media/5921/candidates-briefing-material.pdf and have published other information about the devolution deal for West Yorkshire at https://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/becoming-a-mayoral-combined-authority
More information on the Mayor, the election process or the Mayoral Combined Authority
More information on the Mayor as well as the election process can be found on the West Yorkshire Combined Authority website, visit https://www.westyorks-ca.gov.uk/becoming-a-mayoral-combined-authority