Agenda and minutes

Gloucestershire Economic Growth Joint Committee
Wednesday 14 March 2018 10.00 am

Venue: Cabinet Suite - Shire Hall, Gloucester. View directions

Contact: Laura Powick 

Items
No. Item

115.

Apologies

To note any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Cllr Tim Gwilliam and Mally Findlater, GFirst LEP.

 

116.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 104 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 29 November 2017.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 29 November 2017 were approved by the Committee and signed by the Chair.

 

117.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any pecuniary or personal interests by members.

Minutes:

Cllr Steve Jordan declared a personal interest, as a GFirst LEP Director representing Leadership Gloucestershire on the GFirst LEP Board.

 

118.

Gloucestershire's Growth Story pdf icon PDF 171 KB

CONNECTIVITY

 

-       To receive a presentation from Highways England on the challenges of supporting partners with their growth plans.

 

-       To receive an update on the GCC commissioned Connections Study and the work carried out to date to understand potential shared transport priorities with neighbouring areas.

 

-       To receive a brief update on Highways England’s plans to investigate route options for improving the A417 Missing Link and the Public Consultation process  (15 February -  29 March).

 

 

POST-BREXIT CONSIDERATIONS

 

-       To receive a position paper to advise on potential ‘lines of enquiry’ and particular issues of relevance to Gloucestershire.

 

 

GLOUCESTERSHIRE STRATEGIC PLANS

 

-       To provide an update on the current status of the various Local Plans across Gloucestershire.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Highways England Presentation

 

The Committee received a presentation from Andrew Page-Dove, Regional Director, Highways England, on the investment priorities and challenges facing Highways England in the South West.

 

In particular, the Committee was informed about the potential impacts following the expected removal of tolls on the Severn River Crossing, progress with the A417 ‘Missing Link’ Scheme, and the Initial Network Report, which was published in December 2017. The Committee also noted the challenges facing Highways England in the South West, including the scheduling of planned works on the M5 Corridor, and the impact of planned and un-planned events on the strategic road network.

 

In response to a query, the Committee was informed that Highways England was committed to supporting the development of the Cheltenham Cyber Park and welcomed the opportunity for further conversations on the scheme.

 

In response to a further query relating to the Stroud District Local Plan, it was explained that Highways England could recommend conditions on planning applications, however was not able to impose direction. Andrew Page-Dove welcomed the opportunity for further engagement with Stroud District Council on its Local Plan.

 

There were also queries from the Committee regarding the economic impact of traffic growth, network management boundaries, the alignment of network priorities with housing development priorities, and the potential impact of developments to junctions along the M5. Additionally, Andrew Page-Dove stated that he was open-minded, in response to a query relating to the development of an additional River Severn crossing.

 

The Committee considered potential developments to the M5 Corridor, such as improvements at Junction 9, the development of Junction 10, and the creation of a new junction between Junctions 13 and 14. The Committee was advised, following the discussion, to agree and focus on the key priorities for development within the County. 

 

The Committee invited Highways England to work with local authorities and partners within Gloucestershire more regularly at a strategic level moving forward. Andrew Page-Dove welcomed the opportunity for further collaboration and accepted the invitation.

 

The Committee thanked Andrew Page-Dove for attending the Committee and for delivering an informative presentation.

 

Connections Study

 

Ben Watts, Principal Planning Officer: Strategic Planning, Gloucestershire County Council (GCC), provided the Committee with an update on the GCC commissioned Connections Study.

 

The Committee was informed of the focus, outcomes, and conclusions of Stage 1 of the Gloucestershire Connects Project, and noted that the outputs would inform GCC’s Local Transport Plan review process. It was also noted that Stage 2 of the project would look at highway links within the County and provide a financial value to each link. It was expected that the Stage 2 analysis would be completed by the end of April 2018.

 

In response to a query, it was explained that the project relied on census data and a narrative based on the views of stakeholders, as well as a policy and literature review. It was also clarified that the focus of the project was on external connectivity rather than internal connectivity.

 

In response to a further query  ...  view the full minutes text for item 118.

119.

Gloucestershire Economic Growth Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 94 KB

To consider an update on the activities of the Gloucestershire Economic Growth Scrutiny Committee (GEGSC).

 

The minutes from the GEGSC meetings held on 29 November 2017 and 22 February 2018 are attached for information.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received an update on the activities of the Gloucestershire Economic Growth Scrutiny Committee (GEGSC) from Cllr Kevin Cromwell, Vice Chair, GEGSC.

 

Cllr Cromwell informed the Committee that two GEGSC meetings had now been held at district councils, with another meeting to be held at Cheltenham Borough Council in October 2018.

 

It was also noted that  GEGSC would receive a presentation from Dr Matthew Andrews regarding Vision 2050 at its meeting in September 2018.

 

120.

GFirst LEP Update pdf icon PDF 79 KB

To receive a report on the delivery of the Growth Programme in the County, including an update on ESIF, the Growth Deal Fund reallocation process, and preparation of a Local Industrial Strategy for Gloucestershire.  

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Dev Chakraborty, Deputy Chief Executive, GFirst LEP, provided the Committee with an update on the delivery of the Growth Programme in the County, including an update on ESIF, the Growth Deal Fund reallocation process, and preparation of a Local Industrial Strategy for Gloucestershire.

 

Attention was drawn to the three spreadsheets attached to the report, which detailed a list of all Growth Deal funded projects with a focus on their current status, a list of all Growth Deal funded projects highlighting forecasted outputs from each project, and a visual representation of summary data including progress against annual forecasts.

 

The Committee was updated on the rollout of the Growth Hub network, and the reallocation of Growth Deal funding. It was noted that a ‘Dragon’s Den’ event took place on 4 January 2018, where 9 of the 12 projects received against the re-allocation of funds available gave a presentation on deliverability, economic impact, and the realism/achievability of outputs. The overall level of funding available increased to over £9.5million, therefore 4 of the 9 projects were offered indicative funding. The projects included Gloucester Railway Station Improvements, Gloucestershire Airport – Anson Park Development, Hartpury College ‘Tech to Plate’ Agri-Tech Centre, and Merrywalks Centre Re-development in Stroud.

 

In response to a query, it was highlighted that the Hartpury College ‘Tech to Plate’ Agri-Tech Centre was also seeking national funding from Innovate UK, and that the project highlighted the importance of agriculture in the County.

 

The Committee was informed that 11 LEPs had been allocated to produce Local Industrial Strategies, however Gloucestershire was not included in this. GFirst LEP, in conjunction with GCC, would produce a draft summary of ‘asks’ to the Government by Summer 2018 to ensure Gloucestershire was in a strong position to start early conversations with Government departments.

 

In response to a query, it was clarified that progress with the Inward Investment Bid was on track. 

 

121.

Business Rate Pool pdf icon PDF 115 KB

To receive an update report on the Business Rate Pool and expenditure proposals for the Strategic Economic Development Fund.

Minutes:

David Hagg, Chief Executive, Stroud District Council, updated the Committee on the Business Rate Pool and expenditure proposals for the Strategic Economic Development Fund.

 

It was noted that a risk remains to the level of retained business rates income from outstanding appeals, and that NHS Foundation Trusts were continuing to look to be classified as charitable bodies and therefore qualify for mandatory charitable business rates relief of 80% of their business rates.

 

Members were also reminded that Gloucestershire was successful in its application to be a 100% Business Rates Pilot for 2018/19. The Committee noted the forecasted increased level of benefit from the Pilot, in addition to the advice from Chief Financial Officers that resource allocation decisions on any Pilot benefit be made following the 2018/19 outturn position in April 2019, once there was clarity on both the amount of business rates retained and the distribution. The Committee was advised that the memorandum of understanding with Government would be circulated to the district and county councils once signed.

 

 

122.

Government/HCA Housing Infrastructure Fund

To receive a verbal update on the outcome of recent bids submitted from Gloucestershire.

Minutes:

Members of the Committee provided updates on the outcome of recent Government/ HCA Housing Infrastructure Fund bids submitted from Gloucestershire.

 

123.

Forward Plan - Future Work Programme pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To consider proposed areas of focus and discussion topics for future meetings of the Committee.

Minutes:

The Committee considered the proposed areas of focus and discussion topics for future meetings.

 

The Chair explained to the Committee that a briefing note had been circulated amongst Committee members on the proposal for Cotswold AONB National Park status. He requested that GEGSC consider the potential benefits and economic impacts of a change to National Park status for the Cotswolds, and report back to the Committee at its meeting on 21 November 2018.

 

It was requested that the Committee receive an update on Vision 2050 at its meeting in September 2018.

 

The Committee was also updated on progress with the appointment to the Strategic Planning Coordinator post.

 

124.

Future Meeting Dates

To note that the Committee is due to meet on the following dates in 2018:

 

Wednesday 20 June 2018

Wednesday 5 September 2018

Wednesday 21 November 2018.

 

All meetings to start at 10am (this allows meetings of the Gloucestershire Economic Growth Scrutiny Committee to take place on the same day).

Minutes:

The Committee noted the meeting dates for the remainder of 2018.