The Deputy Leader noted that the Government had established Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to drive economic growth across the country. 39 LEPs had been established and Reigate & Banstead was part of the Coast to Capital LEP.
The Executive had previously received reports regarding the requirement to develop Strategic Economic Plans and had been proactive in proposing growth schemes for inclusion by the LEP.
It was noted that each LEP must demonstrate arrangements for delivering the Strategic Economic Plan which showed collective decision making and local accountability. As such this must include strong partnership arrangements with local authorities. For the Coast to Capital LEP it was proposed that a local authority Joint Committee be established to support this.
The functions of the proposed Joint Committee were summarised in the report. One of its key objectives would be to continue engaging and influencing the LEP, which was expected to receive significant resources to support economic growth and infrastructure.
Members discussed the following points in relation to this initiative:
• the bidding process for seeking and attributing resources to schemes within the LEP;
• the governance arrangements proposed for the Joint Committee;
• publicity material to support the LEP initiative; and
• the associated work undertaken by the Gatwick Diamond initiative.
before the Deputy Leader agreed to RECOMMEND to Full Council that:
(i) a local authority Joint Committee be established, in accordance with section 102(1)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972, to support the work of Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership;
(ii) the following functions be delegated to the Joint Committee:
a. To agree the Strategic Economic Plan and its revisions and amendments as proposed to the Joint Committee by the Board.
b. To provide strategic advice to the Board from time to time on the economic development and growth priorities for the LEP Area.
c. To nominate on request from the Board representatives from the district and borough local authorities who are members of the Joint Committee to serve as Directors on the Board.
(iii) the Leader of the Council be appointed as the Council’s representative on the Joint Committee, and be authorised to appoint any substitute(s);
(iv) the Deputy Chief Executive be authorised to finalise the heads of terms (as set out at Annex 2 to the report) for the Joint Committee; and
(v) the Monitoring Officer be authorised to amend Part 3 of the Constitution to include the functions and responsibilities of the Joint Committee.
Reasons for decision:
To support the involvement of local authorities within the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership.
Alternative Options: To reject the recommendations or to defer the report in order to seek amendments to the governance structure.