The Home Secretary has formally recommended the merger of four local police forces - Humberside and North, South and West Yorkshire.
In a statement to MPs, Charles Clarke said that after studying professional policing and financial assessments he believed it would benefit the region.
He has invited the police authorities concerned to respond by 7 April and he will then make a final decision.
The new regional force would cover the largest area of any force in England.
The government said fewer, but bigger, police forces are needed to tackle organised crime in the 21st Century.
The chief constables of the four forces travelled to London on Tuesday for consultations.
Their meeting with the Home Secretary was also focusing on counter-terrorism and serious crime policing.
When the 43 forces in England and Wales submitted their merger plans to the Home Office in December, North Yorkshire and Humberside indicated that they preferred a full regional merger, whereas the South and West Yorkshire forces went for a stand-alone option.
North Yorkshire's chief constable Della Cannings said she had concerns about a lack of detailed information on the plans and would emphasise at Tuesday's meeting the need to make a commitment to community policing.