Issue - meetings
Levelling Up Fund Round Two
Meeting: 18/01/2022 - Cabinet (Item 99)
As detailed in the recommendations.
Councillor Butler introduced the report and explained that the Levelling Up Fund (LUF) contributed to the UK Government levelling up agenda by investing in infrastructure that improved everyday life across the UK, including regenerating town centres and high streets, upgrading local transport, and investing in cultural and heritage assets. The £4.8 billion fund was designed to realise a visible and tangible impact on people and places and support economic recovery.
The report proposed the development of two bids to be submitted to the UK Government as part of the round two of the programme expected early in 2022. It was proposed that bids were focussed on the coastal communities of Flintshire to: improve conditions for businesses, reduce crime and anti-social behaviour; bring heritage assets back into use; and encourage local people and visitors to use the coastal area.
Whilst every local authority could bid for LUF funding, the fund was especially intended to support investment in places where it could make the biggest difference to everyday life, including ex-industrial areas, deprived towns, and coastal communities. The UK Government had placed local authorities into categories 1, 2 or 3, depending on their identified level of need, with category 1 representing places deemed in most need of investment. Flintshire County Council had been identified as a ‘category 2’ local authority.
The LUF enabled local authorities to apply for up to £20m per parliamentary constituency. Bids above £20m and below £50m would be accepted for transport projects only. Round two was expected to commence in spring 2022. The programme was due to end in March 2024 which provided a very constrained period in which to deliver capital projects.
The Chief Officer (Planning, Environment and Economy) explained that the intention was to submit two bids, one for each parliamentary constituency. Bids would focus on involving regeneration, culture and heritage. The Council had appointed Mutual Ventures to project manage the process and contribute to the preparation of bids.
Members welcomed the report and wished the bids every success.
(a) that approval be given to develop and submit bids for Round Two of the Levelling Up Fund in line with the proposals set out in the report; and
(b) That delegated authority be given to the Chief Officer (Planning, Environment and Economy) and the Cabinet Member for Economic Development to amend and submit the final bids in line with the strategic direction set out in the report, developing specific interventions to reflect the need to submit competitive and deliverable proposals.