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Meeting Details

Economy and Regeneration Policy Board
14 Jun 2022 - 10:00 to 12:00
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Documents

Agenda

Agenda
Notification
Membership Section
Standard Items
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Hybrid Meeting
Please note that this meeting is scheduled to be held in the Council Chambers.  However, it is a hybrid meeting and arrangements have been made for members to join the meeting remotely should they wish.
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Items Of Business
Apologies
Apologies from members.
Declarations of Interest
Members are asked to declare an interest in any item(s) on the agenda and to provide a brief explanation of the nature of the interest.
Report by Chief Executive
1
There was submitted a report by the Chief Executive relative to the recent publication of the Shared Prosperity Fund (SPF) prospectus and budget allocation to Renfrewshire Council from the UK Government.

To draw down SPF funding, all areas were required to develop an Investment Plan for the funding and the UK Government had indicated a preference for a regional approach where possible. An in-principle agreement had been reached at the Glasgow City Region (GCR) Cabinet to progress at the regional level.

The report outlined the broad principles of the funding, the proposed approach for Renfrewshire’s investment plan and the joint work with the other GCR local authorities to develop a Regional Investment Plan for the Glasgow City Region.

Councillor Steel, seconded by Councillor Campbell moved (a) that the direction from UKG to pursue a regional approach in the design and delivery of the SPF be noted and that it be further noted that this was also the preferred position of the Scottish Government; (b) that it be noted that the SPF Regional Investment Plan would be developed as a Glasgow City Region plan in conjunction with all eight Member Authorities with all necessary approvals at both regional and local level being in place prior to a draft Investment Plan submission in summer 2022; (c) that it be noted that the timelines set by the UK Government would very likely require the development and submission of a detailed investment proposal over the course of the summer recess period; (d) that authority be delegated to the Head of Economy and Development, in conjunction with the Convenor, to finalise a detailed set of SPF proposals at a Renfrewshire level which reflected the broad principles set out in the main body of the report and which would feed directly into the GCR submission; and (e) that it be noted that a follow up report would be provided to the September board cycle outlining the detailed proposals submitted to the UK government programme.

Councillor Clark, seconded by Councillor McMillan, moved as an amendment that “it is recommended that the Board delegate authority to the Head of Economy and Development in conjunction with the Convener to shape a detailed set of SPF proposals at a Renfrewshire level which reflect the broad principles set out in the main body of this report and that these are brought to the board for agreement before feeding directly into the GCR submission”

On the roll being called, the following members voted for the amendment: Councillors Ann-Dowling, Clark, N Graham, McCulloch and McMillan.

The following members voted for the voted for the motion: Councillors Burns, Campbell, Andy Doig, McGurk, McNaughtan, Nicolson, Paterson, Shaw and Steel.

5 members having voted for the amendment and 9 members having voted for the motion, the motion was accordingly declared carried.

DECIDED:

(a) That the direction from the UK Government to pursue a regional approach in the design and delivery of the SPF be noted, and that it be further noted that this was also the preferred position of the Scottish Government;

(b) That it be noted that the SPF Regional Investment Plan would be developed as a Glasgow City Region plan in conjunction with all eight member authorities with all necessary approvals at both regional and local level being in place prior to a draft Investment Plan submission in summer 2022;

(c) That it be noted that the timelines set by the UK Government would very likely require the development and submission of a detailed investment proposal over the course of the summer recess period;

(d) That authority be delegated to the Head of Economy and Development, in conjunction with the Convenor, to finalise a detailed set of SPF proposals at a Renfrewshire level which would reflect the broad principles set out in the main body of the report and which would feed directly into the GCR submission; and

(e) That it be noted that a follow up report would be provided to the September board cycle outlining the detailed proposals submitted to the UK government programme.
Report by Chief Executive.
2
There was submitted a joint report by the Chief Executive and the Director of Finance & Resources relative to authorising the Chief Executive to submit an application on behalf of the Council to the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund (LUF) to support the delivery of a new Community Hub within Renfrew, focussed on the Renfrew Victory Baths and former Police Chambers. The total project costs were estimated at £19.92 million, with details of the proposal set out in the report.

A successful application to LUF would  provide £17.92 million of funding for the project, representing approximately 90% of the total estimated project costs. The Council required to confirm a commitment to provide the remaining 10% of project costs, £2 million, as part of the bid.

DECIDED:

(a) That the Chief Executive be authorised, in consultation with the Convenor, to make any minor changes required following the Board meeting and submit a bid to the UK Government’s Levelling Up Fund under the theme of Regeneration and Town Centre investment, as outlined in the report, for £17.92 million of funding;

(b) That it be noted that the draft final bid application and business case were available to elected members for their review in advance of the Board meeting as required;

(c) That that the requirement in submitting the bid for the Council to commit to the provision of a local authority contribution as detailed in paragraphs 5.7 and 5.8 of the report be noted and approved; and

(d) That the written support of Gavin Newlands MP, the constituency MP for the area covered by the bid, in line with the bidding guidance; and the support of a wide range of partners and the local Renfrew community as detailed in paragraph 4.6, be noted.
Report by Chief Executive.
3
There was submitted a report by the Chief Executive relative to the most recent funding allocation from the Scottish Government for Employability Support in Renfrewshire for 2022/23.

The report indicated that local authorities had a strategic interest in employability because of its relationship to the wellbeing of communities and economic development in their areas. Councils had a key role in leading local employability partnerships and managing European funded local employability pipelines. Local authority delivery of employability positively impacted on the Fairer Scotland Duty, Equality Duty and Child Poverty Duty as well as the alignment with fair work and inclusive economic growth.

The report advised that the Scottish Government and COSLA signed a ‘No One Left Behind’ Employability  Partnership Agreement in December 2018 which set out a starting ambition captured in the Scottish Government report ‘No One Left Behind’, published in March 2018, on alignment and integration of employability services in Scotland; a list of guiding principles to support collaborative working; and a governance and leadership infrastructure.

The employability focus was on those furthest from the labour market, the key client group for local authority employability support. This coincided with a shift towards addressing in-work poverty and, provoked by renewed action on child poverty, a focus on low income families.

For local government, the Employability Partnership Agreement provided an opportunity to engage more effectively with Scottish Government to positively shape employability provision and to co-fund employability services.

The report indicated that Renfrewshire Council was accountable for the funding received with much of the decision-making being made through the Local Employability Partnership. The Renfrewshire Local Employability partnership reported operationally through the Community Planning Partnership.

In terms of Scottish Government Funding for 2022/23, the report intimated that Renfrewshire Council received a grant offer letter on 23 March 2022 of up to £1,944,263.83, payable over the financial year 2022/23 in connection with supporting the delivery of the No-One Left Behind All Age Employability Service, which included funding for 25+ Long Term Unemployed (LTU) Labour Market Opportunities; Parental Employability Support Fund; and Young Person’s Guarantee. The report advised that the grant offer had been accepted by the Chief Executive.

Paragraph 4.4 of the report outlined how the funding from Scottish Government would be used and the Renfrewshire Employability Services Plan 2022-2025 was appended to the report.

DECIDED:

(a) That the acceptance by the Chief Executive to the Scottish Government for grant support awarded for the 2022/23 period of £1,944,263.83 under the banner of No-One Left Behind be noted;

(b) That the outline of funding and the proposed use highlighted in section 4 be noted;

(c) That the new focus and role for the Local Employability Partnership as highlighted in section 3.5 of the report be noted; and

(d) That the appended summary document “Employability Services Plan 2022-25” providing an overview of the Local Employability Partnership approach for employability services for the next three years be noted.
Report by Chief Executive.
4
There was submitted a report by the Chief Executive relative to the proposed bid by Glasgow City Region (GCR) member authorities in partnership with the private sector for a green/freeport designation.

The bid was intended to be submitted to the UK Government in response to a prospectus published in March 2022 seeking bids from Scottish locations. The deadline for bid submissions to the UK Government was 20 June 2022.

The report indicated that in June 2021 the Council’s Leadership Board received a report on the potential for a GCR bid for Green/Freeport status. Based on the freeport model, the Scottish and UK Governments were using the term “green/freeport” to define the status proposed for Scottish sites. As tax and customs was a reserved matter the process was led by the UK Government.

The report advised that the bid would be submitted by Glasgow city-region, after endorsement from the GCR Cabinet, ahead of the deadline set by the UK Government of 20 June 2022. The UK Government had stated that it intended to designate two parts of Scotland as having green/freeport status. The GCR Chief Executive’s Group agreed in principle to the preparation of a bid by the eight member authorities in April 2021.

The report set out the relevant content as it affected Renfrewshire; the proposed geography for a “tax site”; the potential economic implications; the purpose of seeking the status; and the next steps.

The approximate boundary of the tax site proposed for Renfrewshire was set out in the appendix to the report.

DECIDED:

(a) That the submission of the GCR bid as it affected Renfrewshire be approved; and

(b) That the proposed designation of the green/freeport tax site as defined within the report be approved.
Report by Chief Executive.
5
There was submitted a report by the Chief Executive relative to the Regeneration Funding Bids update for 2022.

The report advised that national government funding of regeneration projects and programmes had expanded over the last year as both the Scottish and UK Governments had announced new funding programmes. At the meeting of the  Leadership Board held on 16 June 2021 a set of priorities was agreed for projects that officers would pursue through applications to appropriate funding programmes and by utilising capital budget available from the Council budget. The report updated the Board on progress over 2021 in delivering on these priorities and presented the programmes being developed in 2022.

DECIDED:

(a) That the decision of the Director of Finance and Resources to accept the grant offer from the Scottish Government Place Based Investment Programme of £1.038 million for 2022/23 be homologated;

(b) That the progress and continuing actions to deliver projects from the range of regeneration funds identified in the report be noted; and

(c) That the submission of the Kibble/St Mirren Foundation wellbeing project to this year’s round of applications for the Scottish Government’s Regeneration Capital Grant Fund be noted.

Declarations of Interests

Member NameItem Ref.DetailsNature of DeclarationAction
Councillor Alison Ann-Dowling5Transparency Statement - foster carer connected with Kibble and has a child who attended PACE.Non-PecuniaryObjective test applied, remained in meeting to take part in any discussion/vote on this item.
Councillor Michelle Campbell2Transparency Statement - connection due to working with Gavin Newlands MP.Non-PecuniaryObjective test applied, remained in meeting to take part in any discussion/vote on this item.
Councillor Michelle Campbell3Transparency Statement - connection due to being NHS employee.Non-PecuniaryObjective test applied, remained in meeting to take part in any discussion/vote on this item.
Councillor Jim Paterson2Transparency Statement - connection due to having worked part time for Gavin Newlands, MP.Non-PecuniaryObjective test applied, remained in meeting to take part in any discussion/vote on this item.
Councillor John Shaw2Transparency Statement - connection due to working with Gavin Newlands, MPNon-PecuniaryObjective test applied, remained in meeting to take part in any discussion/vote on this item.

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