Agenda item

Chief Executive's Update


A report was received to provide Members with a general update on activity being undertaken by the LEP.



Questions were received from Cllr Dore who was unable to attend the meeting. Below is the listed questions and responses.


  1. As the Mayor has now set up his Social and Economic Recovery Group; does this cause implications for the LEP Board, undermining its role and the role of the Members of the LEP?
  1. The linkages between the work of the LEP Board and the Economic Recovery Group were formalised at the commencement of the Recovery Planning process. The LEP Chair is a Member of the Recovery Group, and as part of this work convenes a business focused sub-group which is led by the LEP Chair / Vice Chairs, with involvement of other Board Members. Private sector LRP Board Members have been invited to provide input to the developing Recovery Plan. Following discussion of this question and response Private Sector Members of the LEP Board did not express any sentiment of their role being undermined.


  1. In a news bulletin from the SCR Mayor it stated that three businesses had had their loans extended.  Who were these three companies? Who took the decision to extend the loans and on what basis, what are the implications of extending these loans and which other companies have loans with the SCR?  As a matter of courtesy, shouldn't Members of the LEP be informed of these decisions, prior to it being published?
  1. The three companies were Gulliver’s Valley, DSA and Yorkshire Wildlife Park. There have been no changes to the amount of debt to be repaid or the outcomes to be delivered by these companies as a result of these decisions. It is merely a deferral of the repayment dates. The decision to extend the term of the loan was made by the S73 Officer; The Constitution allowing the Finance Director to determine the standard payment methods that may be used to collect income and responsibility for debt recovery and general sound financial management of the Authority. James Muir writes a briefing for the LEP Private Sector Members each week and advised Private Sector Members of this matter in his briefing on 3rd April 2020. The deferred repayments will be reported to the MCA in the delegated authority report. In response to the question Mayor Jones asked for a further update on the implication of income deferral on the budget. The S73 Officer reported that the loan repayments had not been factored into the profile of the capital programme budget for future spend.


  1. Price Waterhouse Cooper - why was this organisation appointed to work with the SCR, on what basis and for how long?  Who made the decision?
  1. A tender was issued on the 12th February 2020 for a company to support the work of the LEP in revising the approach to business support and growth aligned to the approach in the economic plan. The outcome of the procurement process was to award to PWC. Due to the pandemic and potential for a recession and significant economic downturn this work was delayed refocusing energies toward developing an economic recovery plan. SCR utilised the flexibility in the procurement regs linked to COVID (PPN 01/20 (Procurement Policy Note - Responding to COVID-19) published by government), whereby contracting authorities are able to utilise exceptions to public procurement regulations. SCR has made a direct award due to extreme urgency (regulation 32(2)(c) to appoint PWC to support the Economic Recovery Plan, as the successful bidder in a related procurement exercise that had been openly run and awarded and based upon the skillset identified in their winning business support tender. The decision was made to award the additional deliverable to PWC by the Statutory Officers utilising their delegated authority as set out in the Constitution.


The meeting discussed how the Covid pandemic might impinge on both revenue and capital budgets and treasury management activity.


Action: Noel to circulate further information to members to explain how LGF loan repayments are factored into budget forecasting.


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