A West Midlands senate will be in place by January, after MPs approved plans in a heated Commons debate.

The committee of regional MPs will oversee the heads of essential services spending £3.2 billion a year, including the West Midlands NHS.

But the decision to create regional committees puts the Government at loggerheads with Birmingham City Council, which said it should be allowed to run health services.

The measure was approved by MPs despite opposition in the Commons from Conservatives, including Sir Patrick Cormack (South Staffordshire), who threatened to make a six-hour speech in protest.

He eventually stopped talking after an hour, despite encouragement from Conservative colleagues to continue.

It will be the first time the region’s quangos, responsible for key Government policy areas such as economic development and training, have been forced to open books to anyone with a democratic mandate.

The new committees will finally put to an end to proposals for elected regional assemblies.

But the measures also entrench regional government – in contrast to Birmingham Council leader Mike Whitby’s proposals to devolve more power to local authorities.

In a submission to the Commons Local Government Committee earlier this week, Coun Whitby said the country would benefit “economically and socially” if local government received “some of the powers and independence it has lost over the last century.”

He said: “We believe that Birmingham’s history and its enormous modern potential should stand as a testament to the truth of that statement and we will continue to put forweard this argument until a government is bold enough to let go and retsore to our great cities the independence they deserve.”

He said councils should take over primary care health trusts – which spend £1.7 billion in Birmingham – and urged the Government to consider giving councils control of “all public spend in a large authority”.

He said: “The result would be that only the local authority would be accountable to Government, so negating the need for government offices, regional development agencies etc.”