Agenda and draft minutes

SCR - Overview and Scrutiny Committee - Thursday, 23rd July, 2020 1.00 pm

Venue: Sheffield City Region, 11 Broad Street West, Sheffield, S1 2BQ

Media

Items
No. Item

27.

Welcome and Apologies

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Minutes:

The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.

 

The meeting was inquorate, but due to the agenda items being for information/discussion only, the Members had agreed to proceed with the meeting.

 

Apologies for absence were noted as above.

28.

Urgent Items/Announcements

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None.

29.

Items to be Considered in the Absence of Public and Press

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Minutes:

None.

30.

Declarations of Interest by any Members

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None.

31.

Reports from and Questions by Members

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None.

32.

Questions from Members of the Public

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None.

33.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting Held on 3 June 2020 pdf icon PDF 243 KB

Presented By: Chair

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Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on

3 June 2020 be agreed as a true record.

34.

Matters Arising

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Minutes:

None.

35.

SCR Economic Recovery Plan pdf icon PDF 156 KB

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Minutes:

F Kumi-Ampofo provided Members with an update on the matters arising since the last meeting in order to finalise the plan.  A summary of the plan had been provided to Central Government ahead of the Chancellor’s Statement.  A final draft of the plan had been produced and had been endorsed at the recent SCR LEP Board meeting.  The plan would be presented to the MCA meeting on 27 July 2020 for approval.  Members would be provided with the final draft of the plan.

 

Members noted the summary of agreed interventions which related to People, Employers and Place:-

 

·        A total funding of £770m which would assist over 50,000 people to           re-engage with the labour market and adapt to the new economy.  The SCR jobs programme would enable work experience, apprenticeships, training, reskilling, upskilling and enable skill guarantees for young people.  It would also overcome barriers for the disadvantaged              i.e. childcare and other care responsibilities, digital skills, housing and transport, and to enable unemployed individuals to be matched to job opportunities.

·        A total funding of £380m to support employers to adapt, survive and thrive despite the Covid-19 pandemic.  This would support over 25,000 businesses, and would back employers to support and deliver a                 jobs-led recovery.

·        A total funding of £570m for infrastructure investment to level up the economy, create jobs and transform communities to ensure flexible investments and recapitalisation, leadership support, supply chain programmes and procurement.  It would enable a Covid-19 spatial adaptation to reconfigured and redevelop urban centres and principal towns, together with sustainable travel, a shovel-ready decarbonisation investment to accelerate low carbon transition, and a shovel-ready infrastructure investment with spades in the ground and cranes in the sky.

 

The SCR Devolution Process was currently in a near phase of completion, following which the first tranche of funding was expected to be received and the MCA powers to act as envisaged, which would be particularly important when implementing the action plan.  Several Government funding announcements had been made around skills and employment, but it was unclear of the role that the combined authorities and local authorities would have; the details of which were now becoming transparent.  The Government had already made announcements in relation to housing.  The Chancellor was expected to attend the Houses of Parliament to read out the Comprehensive Spending Review, following which the Devolution White Paper was expected, which would take the process onto the next stage.  A meeting between the MCA and the Mayor would be held today, and further engagements were ongoing regarding how to ensure the required resources.

 

The SCR LEP Board had approved the process to develop the implementation plans via the thematic boards.  When the process had been developed, the local authority leaders, DfT members and private sector board members would meet to steer and direct the plans to ensure that the renewal action plan could be delivered.  Close working continued with the Government to ensure that the required resources were in place.

 

Members noted that the £1.7bn required for the plan was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 35.

36.

SCR Energy Strategy pdf icon PDF 537 KB

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Minutes:

Members were presented with a report which provided an update on the implementation of the SCR Energy Strategy, and to provide responses to specific questions raised by the Board.

 

The SCR Energy Strategy had been prepared over the past 18 months  and set out the ambition and direction of travel for supporting a low carbon growth economy, building energy resilience, and supporting measures to tackle both the Climate Emergency within the SCR and the transition to a low carbon economy. The SCR Infrastructure Board had overseen its preparation.  The Strategy had been developed alongside the preparation of the new draft SCR Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) to ensure alignment and complementarity with the broader economic and social inclusion ambitions of the region.  The SCR LEP Board had endorsed the strategy on 21 May 2020, and the MCA would consider the strategy for approval on 27 July 2020.  Members noted the responses to the specific questions raised by the Board.

 

The next steps to implement the strategy was underway with partners and key stakeholders as part of a wider strategy for environmental sustainability and response to the Climate and Environmental Emergency.  Members were referred to the £2.5bn Green Homes Grant which had been recently announced to support energy efficiency for the domestic homes.

 

Councillor Baker expressed concern regarding bringing forward research and delivery measures which would all take time.  She queried whether a short-term strategy was in place to escalate matters quickly in order to start to make a difference now.

 

C Blackburn referred to some of the work that was already being implemented, particularly in relation to transport as the SCR Transport Strategy had been agreed in 2019, and the implementation plans were already in place and significant funding had now been secured through the SCRs £166m Transforming Cities Fund.  Conversations were underway with transport providers regarding decarbonising the public transport network.  Energise Barnsley is already delivering the UK’s largest  local authority and community energy solar PV programme to improve the existing housing stock and enable residents to invest.  Other local authorities are also similarly improving the energy efficiency of their housing stock. 

 

There had been a recent Government announcement of £40m devolved to the SCR for brownfield  housing and work was underway with housing directors and the SCR Housing Board with a view to accelerating the development of high quality sustainable homes within the next 2-5 years.

 

Councillor Jones queried how the £2.5bn allocated for housing would be distributed.

 

C Blackburn stated that the recent Government announcement had indicated that this would be made available via a voucher scheme through a Government website.  Households would likely be able to input information regarding their home and be provided with advice on the required measures to improve their home efficiency, together with a list of local suppliers who could install energy efficiency improvements.  The voucher would be up to the value of £5k per household, and the household was expected to invest one third of the amount.  In relation to households within  ...  view the full minutes text for item 36.

37.

Active Travel Plan pdf icon PDF 379 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members were presented with a report which provided an overview of the Sheffield City Region Active Travel Plan (ATIP) and how its work programme and outcomes would be achieved.  The ATIP outlined the requirements from the active travel network to achieve the goals, policies and success criteria outlined within the Transport Strategy and the Mayor’s Vision for Transport.  This would enable aspirational journey time targets to be delivered and to achieve the 21% and 350% increase in walking and cycling.  Currently there was not an SCR defined city region-wide cycle route network in place.  There was a mapped cycle route network for each of the four local authorities, which were each delivered to a different standard and did not always meet the inclusive standards required to enable large scale modal shift to active travel.

 

The ATIP had been adopted by the MCA on 1 June 2020.  Members recalled that upon the election of Mayor Dan Jarvis, he had made active travel a large priority of the overall transport priorities.  Dame Sarah Storey had been appointed in April 2019, as the region’s first Active Travel Commissioner.  Close working had been undertaken to develop an implementation plan, to which P Zanzottera was the Project Director within the MCA.  The implementation plan sat alongside other implementation plans as part of the overall strategy which had been adopted a few years ago.  It had always been the intention to produce four implementation plans for roads, rail, active travel and public transport.  The rail implementation plan had been adopted in the summer of 2019 and the active travel implementation plan had also been adopted.  The critical mapping was the 2040 ambition which set out the long term aspirations for a comprehensive active travel network across South Yorkshire.

 

Dame Storey referred to the close working undertaken with the local authority Leaders to create the implementation plan which had been scheduled to be adopted on 23 March 2020; this had been delayed due to the Covid-19 lockdown, but had since been adopted.  A total of £166m was available through the Transforming Cities Fund (TCF) of which 50% was allocated for active travel.  Work was underway with the local authorities to identify specifics of those schemes, to form part of the second tranche of funding.  Dame Storey and P Zanzottera had created a new set of standards regarding the way to produce the infrastructure for active travel, and it was expected that the Government would adopt almost all of those standards.  A new route on Bennethorpe in Doncaster has been built to the new standards and included consultation with the local blind & partially sighted society and deaf school, to ensure that those accessibility needs were included within the whole scheme.  Over the next 9 month period, Dame Storey hoped to observe the creation of a pipeline of schemes created in order to be prepared for further tranches of funding.  Currently work was underway on the Emergency Active Travel Fund which supplemented the TCF.  Some support with soft measures  ...  view the full minutes text for item 37.

38.

Additional Meeting Date - Bus Review Report pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Additional meeting to be held in September 2020 to discuss the Bus Review Report produced by Clive Betts MP.

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Minutes:

Following a Bus Review Workshop that had been held on 9 July 2020, Members had been keen to call the Bus Review into further scrutiny.

 

RESOLVED – That an additional virtual meeting to discuss the Bus Review Report would be held on Thursday 24 September at 2.00 pm.