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The Minutes of the meeting held on 15 March 2012 were taken as read and signed as a correct record.
The Board considered a report of the Chief Executive which advised the Members of the progress made in implementing the agreed procurement process.
The Board was advised that the competitive dialogue procurement process had commenced on the 16th March 2012 with the issue of the Invitation to Participate in Dialogue (ITPD) documentation to the three Bidders. The completed drafts for the Project Agreement and the Demand Management Participation Agreement which together formed the contracts that the Council awarded at Financial Close had been issued on 20th April 2012.
The Board was further advised that to support the procurement and ensure Bidders could make an appropriate assessment of price and risk, the project team had established an archive of information relevant to the bidding process. Around 4,000 documents had been collated and issued to Bidders in an electronic format.
It was reported that the initial engagement with Bidders had taken place at the end of March 2012. At the commencement of Dialogue the aim had been to consolidate the Bidder’s understanding of the project and the requirements. By the end of May the project team had dealt with over 200 clarifications providing a response to each within the two week response target. There have also been 10 data room updates.
In addition, it was reported that the project team had been reorganised to deal with the Competitive Dialogue Phase set out in Figure 1 of the report.
It was also reported that the Core Dialogue Teams were following a structure programme of meetings with each Bidder leading to a series of Bidder submissions. The first stage of the Dialogue programme extended over 35 weeks leading to Bidders submitting their Draft Final Tenders in mid November this year. The Dialogue process combined with the Council out put based specifications was intended to allow Bidders to develop innovative
schemes and finance that would drive value for money in the submissions
that were received in November. It was already evident in the early submissions discussed in Dialogue that Bidders were striving to offer the Council best value by taking every opportunity to innovate drawing on the extensive experience present in each of the prequalified groups.
The report provided a summary timetable covering the key milestones in the procurement process. The project team remained on target to deliver
Financial close in the autumn of next year.
RESOLVED: That the Board note that the Competitive Dialogue process has commenced and all three Bidders are actively developing their draft Final Submissions in accordance with the Council programme.
SCHEDULE 12A OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972 AND THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT (ACCESS TO INFORMATION) ACT 1985
In this case the Board has a discretion to exclude the press and public and, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted, it is RECOMMENDED that under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, having been satisfied that in all the circumstances of the case the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.
The Board considered:
1) Whether Members of the press and public should be excluded from the meeting of the Board during consideration of the following item of business in accordance with Sub-Section 4 of Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 because it was likely that, in view of the nature of the business to be considered, exempt information would be disclosed, being information defined in Section 100 (1) and paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972; and
2) Whether the disclosure of information was in the public interest, whether any relevant exemptions were applicable and whether, when applying the public interest test and exemptions, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighed that in disclosing the information.
RESOLVED: That as, in all the circumstances of the case, the public interest in disclosing the information, members of the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following item of business in accordance with Sub-Section 4 of Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 because it was likely that, in view of the nature of the business, exempt information would be disclosed, being information defined in Section 100 (1) and paragraph 3 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972.
Mersey Gateway: Project Budget
The Board considered a report of the Chief Executive which advised the Members on the current budget position relating to the Mersey Gateway Bridge Project dealing with the following sub budgets:-
· The Council Project Development Budget;
· The Land Acquisition and Advanced Works Budget; and
· The Project Finance Budget.
(1) the Advanced Works and Land Assembly Budget is showing an under spend against the levels forecast in the budget;
(2) the development budget is under pressure due to the higher cost
incurred in establishing the new planning permissions and in preparing procurement guidance and draft contract documents;
(3) the discussions with the Council Auditors have identified a higher
component of the development budget to be funded by revenue than that envisaged in the current budget provisions; and
(4) mitigation plans are in place to be implemented in consultation with the Department for Transport, to contain overall expenditure within the agreed budgets.