The Yorkshire Party has announced that Mick Bower will be its candidate in the election for a Sheffield City Region Mayor next year.
Announcing the decision, Yorkshire Party leader, Stewart Arnold, said:
"The Yorkshire Party has always said that this Government’s ‘City Region’ approach towards devolution is divisive, undemocratic and limited.
“We’re convinced that the South Yorkshire Labour Party’s attempts to shoehorn Doncaster, Barnsley and Rotherham into a ‘Greater Sheffield’, which is what Sheffield City Region really is, are nothing more than an effort to strengthen that party's grip on South Yorkshire.
“The Yorkshire Party believes in something better – real devolution to Yorkshire as a whole so our county can properly work together to deliver the world class education, transport and health systems that everyone in Yorkshire deserves."
Mick Bower, who lives in Whiston with his wife and two daughters, added:
“The Labour Leaders of South Yorkshire Councils have sold Yorkshire out to their arch enemies in the Conservative Government – that much is clear.
“However, the Yorkshire Party is determined to show South Yorkshire that there can be a better way. That is why we will be fighting to win the Sheffield City Region Mayor election next year.
"As an example of just how limited Labour’s deal is, the whole of South Yorkshire is promised £30 million pounds a year in devolved funding under the City Region deal. However, Barnsley Council alone is facing cuts of £28m to its budget this year. This deal does not mean devolution of power, but devolution of cuts and austerity.
"If the referendum result in June showed anything, it's clear people don't want to be run by out of touch elites. That is why we want a deal which is inclusive and democratic and which can make a real impact on people's lives. We want nothing short of a directly elected parliament for the whole of Yorkshire with the same sort of powers they have in Scotland. If it's good enough for Scotland then it's certainly good enough for Yorkshire."
Mick will be formally introduced at the Yorkshire Party's Annual Conference in York on Saturday.