Venue: Authority Chamber - Mann Island. View directions
The minutes of the meeting held on 8 July 2015, having been circulated, were taken as read and signed as a correct record.
The Panel welcomed Ged Fitzgerald, Chief Executive of Liverpool City Council, to the meeting.
Mr Fitzgerald provided an update on the current position of the negotiations which had taken place between Government and the Liverpool City Region on the potential devolution of powers to the City Region. It was reported that discussions with Government had taken place on a Devolution Deal for the City Region. Following early feedback from Government, four key areas had been prioritised:-
· Economic Development;
· Employment and Skills; and
Planning for Growth.
It was reported that one of the key principles behind the negotiations so far had been that devolution for the City Region would mean powers being passed down from Government to the City Region and not powers being taken away from individual local authorities.
His presentation covered the following:-
· The timetable for final discussions with Government and the Treasury Minister;
· The anticipated date for the announcement /confirmation of the decision on Devolved Powers. This was thought to be part of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement due on 25 November 2015, but an announcement could be prior to this;
· All constituent Councils would have the opportunity to decide on the proposals and hold meetings of their respective Councils on the same day. The date that had been agreed for this process was noted as being 19 November 2015;
· If agreement on Devolution for the City Region was reached, the election timetable for a democratically Elected Mayor would be May 2017;
· The need to improve/ increase communications with the public and other stakeholders.
Panel Members requested regular updates on proposals as they were finalised with Government, with a special meeting of the Panel being convened if necessary to consider detail.
Mr Fitzgerald then dealt with Members’ questions and was thanked for his attendance.
RESOLVED: That the presentation be noted and Members’ comments on proposals be reported back to Officers involved in the negotiation process.
The Panel received a report of the Lead Officer – Scrutiny, on the Panel’s Work Programme for 2015/16 and sought the Panel’s views on the delivery of its remaining topics.
It was noted that one piece of work on European Funding had been completed and that work had commenced on the topic of Affordable Transport. The Panel discussed the scheduling of the remaining review topics that had been identified, given the demand on Member and Officer time. Members agreed that they were keen to make a start on the next review topic of Housing and to have this running alongside the ongoing Affordable Transport review.
1) The report be noted; and
2) work commences on agreeing suitable dates for the next Scrutiny Review topic of Housing.
The Panel received a report of the Lead Officer – Scrutiny, which sought approval for a Calendar of meetings of the Panel.
Two further dates for meetings in the current municipal year were proposed as follows:-
· 13 January 2016; and
· 20 April 2016.
Thereafter, it was proposed that meeting dates would be set at the start of the new Municipal Year, to bring arrangements into line with the Combined Authority calendar.
RESOLVED: That the pattern of meetings, as set out above and in the report, be approved.