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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 27 January, 2014

 

Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Innovation, Planning and Transportation

 

Regional Strategic Framework for South East Wales Delivering a Future with Prosperity

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To receive and endorse the publication "Delivering a Future with Prosperity" as recommended by the South East Wales Regional Partnership Board.  The publication is attached at Appendix 1.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet notes the Regional Strategic Framework as set out in the body of this report and as attached at Appendix 1 to this report.

2.         That a copy of this report and Appendix 1 be forwarded to the City Region Board for consideration.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To allow collaborative work to progress.

2.         To allow the City Region Board to consider the content of the report and work undertaken to date.

 

Background

2.         In December 2011, the South East Wales Regional Partnership Board asked the Directors of Environment and Regeneration of the ten local authorities comprising South East Wales to form a Task and Finish Group to advise on the essential components to realise the vision:

"South East Wales: a thriving nation, visible internationally and distinctively Welsh.   Since that time the directors have provided regular updates to the Board who have steered the work being progressed in relation to the priorities, and in the context of the city regions development."

Since this time, regular updates have been provided to Council Leaders and Chief Executives/Managing Directors via the South East Wales Regional Partnership Board.

3.         Welsh Government and its delivery partners have raised the need for greater regional coordination, especially if limited resources are to be focussed to deliver fewer things, whilst at the same time achieving regional impact.  This need for prioritisation was also highlighted in the recent independent "Guilford Review" which recognised the work underway to develop regional strategies, particularly in terms of securing European funding.  A range of different policies, programmes and projects are seeking a more regional focus, and there is a need to ensure these are brought together and do not duplicate effort and activity.  North Wales, Central and South West Wales have already published their strategies and have been able to put forward their proposals to Welsh Government.  South East Wales is the last region to take this step, however, this work has now been completed using the knowledge and experience within the region.

4.         At the meeting of the Regional Partnership Board on 14th October the following recommendations were approved:-

·               That the Regional Board approves "Delivering a Future with Prosperity", the South East Wales Regional Strategic Framework developed on its behalf by the Directors of Environment and Regeneration.

·               That the Board instruct the South East Wales Directors of Environment and Regeneration to commence discussions with Welsh Government and WEFO to ensure that the strategic priorities identified feature within the economic prioritisation framework for Wales and the Wales Infrastructure Investment Plan pipeline projects.

Relevant Issues and Options

5.         Based on the endorsement of this document by all 10 individual authorities the Regional Board wish to commence discussions with Welsh Government about the next stages for this work, and how it supports Welsh Government priorities, and how local government's priorities for South East Wales support and relate to the Wales Infrastructure Investment Plan and the future European programme 2014 to 2020.

6.         To underpin this strategy another piece of work has been developed which is a matrix of work in development in each of the local authorities, and the collaborative projects in development and proposed.  This will continue to be refined and priorities, and will underpin this strategic framework.

7.         There are clear benefits from the local authorities combining to work under this framework.  Firstly there can be an identification of key strategic projects in areas of vital transport and digital infrastructure.  The collaborative work will also allow the coordinating of activities in further and higher education in terms of coordinating pathways for skill, training and development. There will also be much greater strategic coordination amongst the local authorities in taking forward the prospects for the growth of the economy in South East Wales.

8.         The framework sets out the context for the South East Wales region and identifies three strategic priorities as those that relate to Place, Business Support and Development and People and Skills.  Key projects include the implementation of a South Wales Metro system, the electrification of the rail network and the delivery of an Airport of international significance.  There is also a priority to maximise the opportunities afforded as a result of the Enterprise Zones designations (including St. Athan).  Full details can be viewed by referring to the document at Appendix 1.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

9.         There are no financial implications as a result of this report.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

10.      There are clear links to the sustainability agenda, given that many priorities relate to the transport network, jobs and education.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

11.      There are no specific legal issues arising from the report.  The Framework document that each Council is now being asked to endorse simply sets out the strategic vision for future regional regeneration.  The implementation of the Framework will give rise to legal issues both in terms of the governance arrangements for the partnership and the delivery of the individual projects and these will need to be considered in due course.

Crime and Disorder Implications

12.      There are no crime and disorder implications as a consequence of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

13.      There are no Equality Impact Assessment implications as a result of this work.

Corporate/Service Objectives

14.      The report links with the Corporate objective of regeneration.

Policy Framework and Budget

15.      This is a matter for executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

16.      None applicable

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

17.      Economy and Environment

Background Papers

Appendix 1: South East Wales Regional Strategic Framework "Delivering a Future with Prosperity".

 

Contact Officer

Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services

 

Officers Consulted

Head of Finance

Operational Manager, Legal Services

 

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas

Director of Development Services - 01446 704630

 

 

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