Agenda and minutes

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority - Friday, 28th February, 2020 1.00 pm

Venue: Authority Chamber - No.1 Mann Island, Liverpool, L3 1BP

Contact: Trudy Bedford 

Media

Items
No. Item

142.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received on behalf of:

 

Member of the LCR Combined Authority

Mayor J Anderson OBE, Portfolio Holder: Education, Employment and Skills

 

Associate Members

Councillor I Moran, Leader of West Lancashire Borough Council

Councillor R Bowden, Leader of Warrington Borough Council

 

Mayoral Advisors

B Spicer, Social Housing Growth

Councillor E Spurrell, Tackling Violence against Women and Girls

Reverend Canon Dr E Loudon, Community and Voluntary Sector

Professor Dame Janet Beer, Higher Education

L Morris, Fairness and Social Justice

G Ben-Tovim OBE, Natural Environment

143.

Declarations of Interest

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was reported that no Declarations of Interest had been received.

144.

Minutes of the meeting of the LCR Combined Authority held on 24 January 2020 pdf icon PDF 154 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the LCR Combined Authority held on 24 January 2020 be approved as a correct record, subject to the inclusion of Gideon Ben-Tovim OBE in the attendance of those Members present.  

145.

Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Announcements and Updates

To receive updates from the Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Metro Mayor S Rotheram provided Members with an update on his activities and key developments since the last meeting of the LCR Combined Authority.

 

Metro Mayor S Rotheram explained that following the recent Cabinet reshuffle he had held discussions with a number of new Ministers and Secretaries of State about the priorities for the City Region. He highlighted that he had stressed to Simon Clarke, Minister of State of Housing, Communities and Local Government, the need for significant investment and further devolution of powers to the City Region. Metro Mayor S Rotheram also informed Members that unlike his predecessor, Simon Clarke, would not be attending Cabinet and he had voiced these concerns with the Minister and sought confirmation that this was not an indication of the Government scaling back on its commitments to the North.

 

Metro Mayor S Rotheram also reported that he had had a number of discussions with the Secretary of State for Transport, in which he welcomed the Government’s commitment to delivering HS2 in full but stressed that he would continue to push for the delivery of HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail. He also reported that he had continued to make the case for investment from Central Government into Northern transport infrastructure and in local transport services. He noted that the Government’s recent announcement of funding for bus services was welcomed.

 

Metro Mayor S Rotheram informed the LCR Combined Authority that he had spoken at the launch of Wirral Council’s Community Wealth Building Strategy. He explained how he wanted the City Region to be the UK’s fairest and most inclusive region and welcomed Wirral Council’s bold new approach to growing their economy by keeping as much money in the local economy as possible. He noted that this was ethical economics and was proud to see the City Region leading the way with these economic principles and how it would bring about economic growth.

 

In conclusion, Metro Mayor S Rotheram, reported that the first of the new trains had arrived in the City Region. He noted that the new fleet of trains would be the most accessible trains in the county, equipped with WiFi and had the potential to operate beyond the current network. He reiterated his commitment to build a fully integrated transport system in the City Region, which was as good as London’s and that the new trains formed a key part of this and looked forward to seeing them on the network later on in the year.

 

 

146.

Strategic Investment Fund - Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre pdf icon PDF 298 KB

To consider the report of the Portfolio Holder: Inclusive Economy and Third Sector and the Director of Commercial Development and Investment.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered a report of the Portfolio Holder for Inclusive Economy and Third Sector and Director of Commercial Development and Investment which sought approval for Strategic Investment Fund support of up to £3.1m to fund refurbishment and construction expenditure for the Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre.

 

            Councillor P Hackett, Portfolio Holder: Inclusive Economy and Third Sector, informed Members that the grant funding would be used to refurbish and expand the Crosby Lakeside Adventure Centre. Its refurbishment would return the Centre to a popular destination for local residents and a starting point for tourists heading to Crosby beach and Antony Gormley’s Iron Men. He noted from his own experience with the transformation of New Brighton, the value local assets could bring to an area. Councillor Hackett also explained that Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council owned the Centre, and they would be considering how it could help disadvantaged citizens from Bootle to use the facilitates more. In conclusion, he explained that the project was a strategic fit and it was on this basis it was being recommended to the LCR Combined Authority.

 

            Councillor I Maher, Leader of Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council, welcomed the investment in the Centre and highlighted how the investment would attract more visitors to Antony Gormley’s Iron Men. Furthermore, the improvements to the accommodation and to the boating and water sports facilitates would make the Centre more attractive for young people to use and enhance the visitor and culture offer in the area.

 

            RESOLVED – That:-

 

(i)            the provision of grant funding from the Strategic Investment Fund (SIF) of up to £3.1m be approved;

 

(ii)          the funding conditions set out in Appendix One be approved; and

 

(iii)         delegated authority be granted to the Director of Commercial Development and Investment to finalise negotiations as detailed funding terms and associated agreements for the project specified at (i) and (ii) above, in consultation with the Combined Authority Monitoring Officer and Combined Authority Treasurer.   

147.

Mersey Tidal Project Update pdf icon PDF 165 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Commercial Development and Investment and the Portfolio Holder: Low Carbon and Renewable Energy.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered a report of the Director of Commercial Development and Investment and the Portfolio Holder: Low Carbon and Renewable Energy, which provided an update on the recent progress of the Mersey Tidal Power project and sought approval for funding to support the continued development of the project.

 

            Metro Mayor S Rotheram informed Members that a promotional video setting out the Mersey Tidal Power project would be shown to them.

 

            Following the promotional video, Councillor G Wood, Deputy Portfolio Holder: Low Carbon and Renewable Energy, explained that harnessing the power of the River Mersey was a key pledge in the Metro Mayor’s manifesto and work continued to make this pledge a reality. Councillor Wood explained that there was an existential climate emergency and the Mersey Tidal Power project would support the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority commitment to be carbon neutral by 2050. She also noted that developments in tidal infrastructure had improved in recent years and it would now be able to generate more power than previously considered possible. Furthermore, the project would support highly skilled jobs for local people.

 

            Metro Mayor S Rotheram noted that since 1984 there had been proposals to harness the power of the Mersey. He emphasised that the current programme was a genuinely achievable proposal and was supported by a strong strategic case.  He explained that through devolution the Combined Authority had the opportunity to make evidence based decisions to submit a business case to Central Government for support. Furthermore, he explained that energy demand would double by 2050 so it was imperative that the natural resources of the Mersey were harnessed.

 

            Councillor R Polhill, Portfolio Holder: Low Carbon and Renewable Energy, explained that with the advances in new technology and ensuring that ecological conditions were right this would be an achievable project, which the Government would need to strongly consider.

 

            In conclusion, Metro Mayor S Rotheram, explained that an environmental impact assessment would be undertaken to ensure the eco-system wasn’t adversely affected by the project. Furthermore, if no action was taken this would have a detrimental impact upon the broader climate emergency and encouraged Central Government to support the project which would support the net zero carbon target by 2040 for both the City Region and the Country.

 

            RESOLVED – That:-

 

(i)            the progress in developing a viable tidal energy scheme be noted;

 

(ii)          £2.4m be committed to operating funds over two years;

 

(iii)         authority be delegated to the Director of Commercial Development and Investment to approve expenditure within the approved project budget up to the value of £1 million for any single item. Expenditure decisions in excess of £1 million will be determined in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Low Carbon and Energy Renewable;

 

(iv)         the Combined Authority’s intent to recruit or second a small in-house team, supported by external consultant experts, to undertake this next phase of work be noted; and

 

(v)          progress report(s) be provide to the Combined Authority periodically during this next two year phase.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 147.

148.

Taking Forward Bus Reform in the Liverpool City Region pdf icon PDF 182 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Corporate Services and the Portfolio Holder: Transport and Air Quality.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered the report of the Director of Corporate Services and the Portfolio Holder for Transport and Air Quality which provided an update on the progress of the development of an Outline Business Case to assess the options for reforming bus services in the Liverpool City Region under the requirements of the Bus Services Act 2017.

 

            Councillor L Robinson, Portfolio Holder for Transport and Air Quality informed Members that previous reports had been presented to the LCR Combined Authority which set out the powers given in the Bus Services Act 2017. He explained that the report set out the interim position and recognised that there was much more work to do to achieve the vision of a London-style integrated transport system for the region. Furthermore, this meant a system which was designed around the needs of communities and local economy’s, with buses which were punctual, reliable and affordable.

 

            Councillor Robinson went on to explain that a genuine quality alternative to the car was required to enable people to use public transport and help tackle the climate emergency. He referred to the Prime Minister’s recent announcement that a £5billion fund for improving buses and cycling infrastructure was available and The Government would be lobbied to ensure the City Region got its fair share of the fund.

 

            Members were informed that Officers would be looking at enhanced partnership and further development of the LCR Combined Authority’s successful Bus Alliance as well as franchising. These would be assessed against the Vision for Bus and the wider economic, environmental and social objectives for the City Region.

 

            In conclusion, Councillor Robinson, advised that this review would also ensure that the ease of travel and availability of services were at the heart of the LCR Combined Authority’s considerations and would also focus on integrated transport, service frequency and availability, fares and the wider IT enabled metro card system which had all been highlighted as part of the Big Bus Debate.

 

            Matt Goggins, Assistant Director for Bus, informed the LCR Combined Authority that legislation allowed for possible interventions in the bus market which included Franchising, Enhanced Partnership or voluntary partnerships, with the latter option building on the LCR Bus Alliance. He explained that Merseytravel and a team of professional advisors had been collating and analysing information. As a result of this, franchising had been identified as the emerging leading option for bus reform in the City Region. Furthermore, the Enhanced Partnership and Bus Alliance options would continue to be assessed and had not been ruled out. The assessment continued and the ranking of options could change. 

              

            He went on to explain that Merseytravel would be assessing evidence on all aspects of bus operations and the wider policy objectives of the LCR Combined Authority relating to clean air and sustainable integrated transport. In conclusion, Mr Goggins highlighted that the nature of the review areas were set out in the report and the assessment required was extensive and comprehensively identified in the legislation and its guidance.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 148.

149.

Liverpool City Region Skills Investment Statement 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 150 KB

To consider the report of the Portfolio Holder: Education, Employment and Skills and Assistant Director of Policy and Strategic Commissioning.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered the report of the Portfolio Holder: Education, Employment and Skills and the Assistant Director of Policy and Strategic Commissioning which sought approval for the Liverpool City Region Skills Investment Statement 2020/2021.

 

            Dr Aileen Jones, Assistant Director of Policy and Strategic Commissioning reported that the Investment Statement was the annual update on the labour market in the City Region and also set out key actions to address issues identified by it.

 

            Members were informed that employment was up and both unemployment and economic inactivity was down. Concerns remained with the quality of many jobs and people were taking multiple jobs to make ends meet. Attainment in schools at age 16 remained a challenge and work had started to support schools in this area. It was emphasised that Apprenticeship funding was not working for the City Region and this point was being made strongly to Government. It was explained that the City Region required good quality apprenticeships creating for young people. In conclusion, Dr Jones informed Members that the Ways to Work was the flagship employment support programme for the City Region and the Department for Work and Pensions had advised that funding to continue the programme was not available.

 

            Metro Mayor S Rotheram informed the LCR Combined Authority that he had written to the Secretary of State to express his concerns about the funding withdrawal for the Ways to Work programme.

 

            RESOLVED – That:-

 

(i)            the Liverpool City Region Investment Statement 2020/2021 of local needs as set out in Appendix One be endorsed; and

 

(ii)          the refreshed Employment and Skills Board be requested to monitor the progress of the delivery of those actions throughout 2020/2021.

150.

Adult Education Budget Programme Update pdf icon PDF 159 KB

To consider the report of the Assistant Director of Policy and Strategic Commissioning and the Portfolio Holder for Education, Employment and Skills.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered a report of the Assistant Director of Policy and Strategic Commissioning and the Portfolio Holder for Education, Employment and Skills which provided an update on the progress relating to the devolution of the Adult Education Budget to the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority from 1 August 2019 for the academic year 2019/20 onwards.

 

            Dr Aileen Jones, Assistant Director for Policy and Strategic Commissioning, reported that Adult Education Budget devolution had been in operation for six months and it was now timely to reflect on how the programme was performing. Members were informed that the first year of operation had been good with positive from partners and providers who were supportive of the approach taken. Furthermore, delivery of the Budget was strong with 33 organisations having contracts and they were responding to the priorities of the City Region. It was further reported that the Budget was being spent well with £22.6m being invested at the end of January 2020. In conclusion, Members were informed that the Adult Education Budget for 2020/21 was £53.4m which was a slight increase compared to £51.3m for 2019/20.  

 

            RESOLVED – That:-

 

(i)            the progress made in delivering the devolved Adult Education Budget as set out in Sections 4 and 5 of this report be noted;

 

(ii)          the programme flexibilities for 2020/21 and the ambition to deliver greater innovation and local flexibility in the second year of AEB devolution be supported; and

 

(iii)         the timeline for 2020/21 as detailed in Section 6 be noted.

151.

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Quarter 3 Financial Performance Report 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 288 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Corporate Services.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            The LCR Combined Authority considered the report of the Director of Corporate Services which provided a financial update for the revenue and capital activity for the period April to 31 December 2019.

 

            RESOLVED – That:-

 

(i)            the revenue position for the Combined Authority for the period 31 December 2019 be noted;

 

(ii)          the capital position for the Combined Authority for the period to 31 December 2019 be noted;

 

(iii)         the revised revenue budget as detailed in Table 1 be approved;

 

(iv)         the reallocation of funding from within the Mayoral General Fund to make provision for an allocation of £500,000 for the LCR Climate Partnership as set out in paragraph 4.2.12 be approved;

 

(v)          the provision of a £500,000 working capital loan to the Growth Platform company as set out in paragraph 4.2.13 be approved; and

 

(vi)         the allocation of up to an additional £550,000 to the A57 KRN scheme as detailed at 4.2.7 be approved.

152.

Public Question Time

Members of the public will be given the opportunity to ask questions which have been submitted in accordance with Meetings Standing Orders No. 11. A period of 30 minutes will be allocated for this item. Copies of valid questions will be circulated at the meeting.

 

Members of the public who wish to submit questions are asked to contact Democratic Services either by:

 

Email: democratic.services@liverpoolcityregion-ca.gov.uk

Telephone: 0151 330 1330

In writing: Democratic Services, LCR Combined Authority, PO Box 1976, No. 1 Mann Island, Liverpool, L3 1BP.

 

A proforma will be supplied for the submission of public questions which for this meeting must be returned by 5.00pm on Monday 24 February 2020.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            Metro Mayor S Rotheram reported that no public questions had been received.

153.

Petitions and Statements

Members of the public who wish to submit a single position or statement in accordance with Meetings Standing Orders No. 11 are asked to contact Democratic Services either by:

 

Email: democratic.services@liverpoolcityregion-ca.gov.uk

Telephone: 0151 330 1330

In writing: Democratic Services, LCR Combined Authority, PO Box 1976, No. 1 Mann Island, Liverpool, L3 1BP.

 

The single petition or statement for this meeting must be returned by 5.00pm on Monday 24 February 2020.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            Metro Mayor S Rotheram reported that no petitions or statements had been received.

154.

Minutes of the Transport Committee held on 7 November 2019 pdf icon PDF 181 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

            RESOLVED – That the minutes of the Transport Committee held on 7 November 2019 were received as a correct record.

 

            In doing so Councillor L Robinson, Chairperson of the Transport Committee, reported that a key highlight at the meeting was a presentation from Aventi who were delivering the West Coast mainline service.