Agenda and minutes

SCR - Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 11th April, 2019 1.00 pm

Venue: Meeting Room 14, Barnsley Town Hall, Church Street, Barnsley

Items
No. Item

1.

Welcome and Apologies

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting and reminded everyone that the meeting was being webcast live and would be subsequently uploaded to the Mayoral Combined Authority’s website.  Apologies had been received from Mayor Dan Jarvis who was in London dealing with Parliamentary business.  Other apologies were noted as above.

 

The Chair noted that the meeting had not been quorate.

 

2.

Voting Rights for Non-Constituent Members

Minutes:

It was agreed that there were no items of business for which non-Constituent Members should not have full voting rights.

 

3.

Urgent Items/Announcements

Minutes:

None.

 

4.

Items to be Considered in the Absence of Public and Press

Minutes:

None.

 

5.

Declarations of Interest by any Members

Minutes:

None.

 

6.

Reports from and Questions by Members

Minutes:

None.

 

7.

Questions from Members of the Public

Minutes:

None.

 

8.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting Held on 17 January 2019 pdf icon PDF 269 KB

Presented By: Chair

Minutes:

RESOLVED:  That the minutes of the meeting of the SCR Overview and Scrutiny Committee are agreed to be a true record of the meeting subject to it being noted that some Members objected to the lack of site names on the projects yet to be approved contained within the report on the Update on the Housing Fund at Item 11 and to also note that Andrew Frosdick agreed to supply the Committee with further information as to why this was the case.

 

9.

Matters Arising pdf icon PDF 73 KB

a.    Including Community Transport Services in South Yorkshire Report – supplementary information as requested by members.

b.    Working Win – Response to scrutiny questions

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cllr Mohammed queried whether the South Yorkshire Leaders had been invited to the meeting.

 

The Committee noted that the Leaders had been invited to the next meeting of the Committee; it had not been deemed appropriate to ask them to today’s meeting as it was during an election period.

 

Cllr Shepherd commented that it was good news that Dame Sarah Storey had been appointed by the Mayor as his Active Travel Commissioner.

 

Members requested that Active Travel updates be added to the Work Programme at appropriate junctures.

 

Action:  Christine Marriott

 

The Committee noted the responses from Dr D Smith to questions raised at the last meeting and the supplementary information regarding Community Transport services in South Yorkshire.

 

10.

Mayor's Report including Bus Review pdf icon PDF 223 KB

Minutes:

The Chair read out a letter from Mayor Jarvis which, in his absence updated the Committee on Devolution, the Bus Review (which was covered in the following report) and the Sheffield City Region Travel Commissioner.

 

He also read out a letter to the Secretary of State signed by Mayor Jarvis, and the four South Yorkshire Leaders which set out proposals on a way forward to unlock the Sheffield City Region devolution deal.

 

It was noted that a first meeting had been held to scope out the work plan and a further meeting with officers from MHCLG had been arranged during the next week.  The Committee asked to be updated as discussions were progressed.

 

The Committee agreed that they still require the Leaders to attend their next meeting to discuss a long-term way forward for devolution in the region.  Christine Marriott would schedule a meeting beforehand for the Committee to agree the key lines of enquiry that Members would like to be addressed.

 

Jo Kaczmarek presented a report which gave an update on the South Yorkshire Bus Review which was being led by Clive Betts MP on behalf of the Mayor.

 

Members noted that Clive Betts MP was in the process of identifying a small number of commissioners to join the review who would contribute to a range of thinking and support him in carrying out the programme of work, leading to an interim report and then a final report containing conclusions and recommendations.

 

The Commission’s role would also be to review evidence, interview stakeholders and conduct fieldwork visits.

 

Running in parallel to this was finalising the process for the call for evidence which would be an important part of the review and, in particular, to go out to community groups, existing bus users and non-bus users to assist in understanding the decline in patronage.  Members emphasised that the most important stakeholder group to include in consultation and fact finding was members of the public – both bus service users and non-service users.

 

RESOLVED:  The Chair requested that the Committee received updates in line with project milestones.

 

Action:  Christine Marriott to include the Bus Review on the OSC Work Programme.

 

It was hoped that an interim set of findings would be presented to the Mayor in October 2019, leading to the submission of a final report containing findings and recommendations for improvement at the end of 2019.

 

RESOLVED:  That the report be noted along with the Terms of Reference at Annex A to the report.

 

11.

Potential Effects of Brexit on the Sheffield City Region pdf icon PDF 178 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A report was submitted to inform the Committee on the possible impacts of Brexit on the City Region and detailed what SCR had been doing to mitigate risks by assisting businesses with preparations for leaving the European Union.

 

Members were informed that the Brexit report produced by the SCR (at Annex 1) considered a range of options from a City Region perspective and focused on the impacts on the local economy on key sectors such as manufacturing and education.

 

Cllr Richards asked to be provided with further information relating to numbers rather than percentages, specifically with regard to the table on trade.

 

Action:  Paul Johnson/Christine Marriott

 

Local authorities in the SCR had done their own Brexit impact assessments that focused on impacts on their services.  The objective of the SCR report was to offer a complementary analysis to the work undertaken by the local authorities by looking at the likely impacts of different Brexit scenarios on the SCR economy and potential mitigation measures.

 

Cllr Shepherd queried whether the uncertainty regarding Brexit had already impacted inward investment to the region.

 

Helen Lazarus informed the Committee that of 17 foreign-owned businesses questioned, only one felt positive, 3 were neutral and the rest were negative towards the current situation.  There was evidence of delays in decision-making and taking investment opportunities.

 

The SCR team’s role was to keep business owners as up to date as possible and help them adapt to whatever market circumstances arise after the changes that they were going through currently.

 

Officers were also lobbying government to ensure that when Brexit eventually occurred SCR received the regeneration funding it required.

 

RESOLVED:  That the report be noted.

 

12.

SCR Budget pdf icon PDF 209 KB

·         2019/20 Budget

·         Budget Setting Process

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A report was considered which briefed Members on the MCA/LEP budget setting process and how decisions were made regarding the allocation of each budget.

 

The budget had been taken to, and approved by the MCA, on 25 March 2019 and had also been taken to the LEP Board two weeks previously.

 

The report set out the process by which the budget was brought to the point of approval, having conferred with the Scrutiny Officer prior to writing the report, the report answered the questions that the Chair and Vice-Chair had wanted to see incorporated within.

 

In answer to a question from Cllr Richardson, the Scrutiny Officer confirmed that the budget setting process had not been to the Committee prior to the budget being approved.

 

Going forward, a timetable will be agreed with the Finance Manager relating to the  budget being presented to the Committee and this would be incorporated into the Work Programme.

 

After several questions regarding the process, the Deputy Managing Director suggested that a presentation be given to the Committee on underlying issues within the budget setting process within a workshop setting.  This was agreed.

 

Action:  Christine Marriott

 

RESOLVED:  That the Committee note the process by which the 2019/20 MCA/LEP revenue budget was set.

 

13.

Scrutiny Work Programme

·         Referrals received since last formal meeting

·         Reviews – updates and proposals

·         Matters to raise at the Mayoral Combined Authority

 

Minutes:

The Scrutiny Officer reminded the Committee that referrals could be made to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee by Members and also by members of the Constituent and non-Constituent members of the MCA.  Referrals are to be made via the Scrutiny Officer together with any questions that could not wait until the next meeting of the Committee.

 

After the Local Elections, the Scrutiny Officer would be arranging a meeting to set the Committee’s Work Programme for the forthcoming year.

 

The Committee were informed that that the Statutory Scrutiny Guidance, which was due for publication in December 2018, had still not been released.  The information would be made available to the Committee as soon as the guidance was released.