Agenda and minutes

Venue: City Hall, Bristol City Council

Link: Webcast video is available

Items
No. Item

1.

Evacuation Procedure

In the event of a fire, please await direction from staff who will assist with the evacuation.   Please do not return to the building until instructed to do so by the fire warden(s).

 

Minutes:

The Chair thanked Bristol City Council for hosting the meeting, welcomed attendees to the meeting and introduced his colleagues:

  • Cllr Toby Savage, Leader, South Gloucestershire Council and Deputy Mayor of the Combined Authority
  • Mayor Marvin Rees, Bristol City Council
  • Cllr Dine Romero, Leader, Bath & North East Somerset Council

 

The evacuation procedure for the venue was then announced by the Chair.

 

The Chair then informed everyone present that the meeting was being recorded and that the recording would be available to view after the meeting on the Combined Authority website. Any individuals present who did not wish to be filmed were asked to indicate this.

 

Motion on declaring a climate emergency:

The Chair then advised that in addition to the reports listed on the agenda for the meeting, the committee would also be considering a motion he had submitted, requesting the Combined Authority to declare a climate emergency.

 

This motion had been published on the Combined Authority website and copies were available at the meeting for public inspection.  Comments on this matter had been received from the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and a number of public statements on this subject had also been received.  In light of this, the committee would consider the motion as the first main item of business, immediately after the public statements section of the meeting had been concluded (item 10a below refers).

 

2.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

It was noted that apologies had been received from Professor Steve West, the Chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership Board, and Cllr Stephen Clarke, Chair of the Combined Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

3.

Declarations of interest under the Localism Act 2011

Members who consider that they have an interest to declare are asked to: a) State the item number in which they have an interest, b) The nature of the interest, c) Whether the interest is a disclosable pecuniary interest, non-disclosable pecuniary interest or non-pecuniary interest. Any Member who is unsure about the above should seek advice from the Monitoring Officer prior to the meeting in order to expedite matters at the meeting itself.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

4.

Minutes of previous meeting pdf icon PDF 171 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting as a correct record.

Minutes:

The committee RESOLVED:

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the committee held on 14 June 2019 be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

5.

Chair's Announcements pdf icon PDF 66 KB

To receive any announcements from the Chair of the West of England Combined Authority Committee.

Minutes:

The Chair shared the following news about the Combined Authority’s recent activities:

 

  • The Secretary of State for Transport had visited Bristol Temple Meads railway station in connection with the MetroWest plans to transform the region’s railways with more frequent services, new train stations and better rail connections across the West of England. The Transport Secretary had given his support for the multi-million-pound upgrades at Bristol East Junction.  The work at Bristol East Junction would mean that new railway lines and stations could be opened, benefiting residents and helping the region to prosper. Rail was a key part of the ambition to improve public transport in the region, giving people more sustainable ways to travel.

 

·         He was pleased with the progress being made and the noticeable recent development work on site in the Temple Quarter area.

 

  • The Combined Authority’s new £1m Green Business Grants fund had opened to applications, aimed at helping small and medium-sized businesses across the region to improve their energy efficiency. As part of the ongoing efforts to tackle climate change, this new fund would help businesses make their buildings and activities more energy efficient, thereby reducing their energy bills and protecting them from future energy price rises.

 

  • He welcomed the opening of the new permanent biomethane gas filling station for the MetroBus fleet of environmentally friendly buses in Bristol, as part of the ongoing aim to help reduce congestion, improve air quality and keep people moving. It also supported the ambition to improve public transport in the region, giving people more sustainable ways to travel.  More than 70,000 people were now choosing to use MetroBus every week and a recent passenger survey showed a 19% shift from car to MetroBus. The Combined Authority planned to build on that success with more services and better connections as part of the wider objective of getting more people to switch to using public transport across the West of England.

 

6.

Comments from the Chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership

To receive any comments from the Chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership.

Minutes:

It was noted that the Chair of the Local Enterprise Partnership Board, Professor Steve West had given his apologies for the meeting.  No comments had been submitted for this meeting.

 

7.

Comments from the Chair of the Combined Authority's Overview & Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 133 KB

To receive any comments from the Chair of the Combined Authority’s Overview and
Scrutiny Committee.

Minutes:

As advised earlier at the meeting, it was noted that the Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Cllr Stephen Clarke had given his apologies for this meeting.  He had though submitted comments on behalf of the committee on the following issues:

 

1. Climate emergency motion: Overview and Scrutiny members generally welcomed the Mayor’s motion on climate emergency. They also felt that climate emergency / climate change considerations should be at the forefront of the delivery of (and reporting on) all Combined Authority projects, strategies and plans. 

2. Constitutional / governance changes: members reiterated their previously expressed view that individuals should be permitted to ask oral supplementary questions at Combined Authority committee meetings in respect of the replies they received to written questions.

3. Issue raised in a public statement submitted to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee meeting: Concerns were passed on about an issue raised about the impact of the experimental traffic order and potential removal of a bus lane and related traffic light adjustments at Hambrook near the M32.

4. Reports to committees: As a matter of good practice, members felt that late amendments should not be made to committee reports either at or just before committee meetings.

5. Integrated ticketing: The report on taking forward future work on integrated ticketing was welcomed.

6. Employment and Skills Plan: Whilst acknowledging the comprehensive assessment contained in the plan on the current regional position on employment and skills, the plan implementation should be taken forward with ambition, including robust targets/indicators.

 

The comments were presented at the meeting by Cllr Winston Duguid, Vice-Chair of the Overview & Scrutiny Committee.  The full comments had been circulated in advance of the meeting and would be available to view on the Combined Authority web site.

 

In response to a question from Cllr Romero, Cllr Duguid stressed that Overview and Scrutiny members strongly recommended that climate emergency / climate change considerations must be placed at the forefront of delivery so that this is embedded in the culture of the organisation.

 

In noting the comments, Mayor Rees indicated that he would also welcome Overview and Scrutiny members putting forward prescriptive/specific suggestions and ideas that were focused on assisting delivery.

 

In relation to the Hambrook bus lane / traffic lights issue, Cllr Savage stressed that it was important to recognise that the traffic order was experimental; the position would be monitored carefully on the basis that there would be flexibility to alter arrangements if/as necessary.

 

8.

Items from the Public (petitions; statements; questions) pdf icon PDF 2 MB

If you wish to present a petition or make a statement at this meeting, you are
required to submit this by 12 noon on the working day before the meeting by email
to
democratic.services@westofengland-ca.gov.uk   For this meeting, this means that
your petition/statement must be received in this office by
12 noon on Thursday 18
July 2019.


If you wish to ask a question at the meeting, you are required to submit the
question in writing to
democratic.services@westofengland-ca.gov.uk by no later
than 3 working days before the meeting
. For this meeting, this means that your
question(s) must be received in this office by the end of
Monday 15 July 2019.

In presenting any statements at the meeting, members of the public are
generally permitted to speak for up to 3 minutes each. The total time available
for this session is 30 minutes. At the discretion of the Chair, speaking time
may sometimes be reduced depending on how many public items are received.
Please note that all public items will be circulated in advance of the meeting to
the committee members.

Minutes:

3 questions had been submitted in advance of this meeting, as follows:

 

  1. Cllr Martin Fodor (Bristol City Council) - subject: Integrated ticketing - future work

(agenda item 13)

  1. Cllr Eleanor Combley (Bristol City Council) - subject: Combined Authority and Mayoral budget outturn report, April-May 2019 (agenda item 11)
  2. Cllr Eleanor Combley (Bristol City Council) - subject: Employment and Skills Plan

(agenda item 16)

 

The Chair advised that written replies had been sent to all questioners in advance of the meeting.

 

11 statements and 1 petition had been received in advance of the meeting, as follows:

 

  1. David Redgewell - subject: Transport issues
  2. Cllr Sarah Warren (Bath & North East Somerset Council) - subject: Climate emergency
  3. Dorothy Stein - subject: Climate emergency
  4. Cllr Joanna Wright (Bath & North East Somerset Council) - subject: Climate emergency
  5. Cllrs Tim Kent & Harriet Clough (Bristol City Council) - subject: M1 MetroBus Bamfield bus stop
  6. Max Langer (petition) - subject: Bus franchising
  7. Christina Biggs - subject: Rail services and other transport issues
  8. Andy O’Brien - subject: Zero carbon society
  9. Andrew Shore - subject: Experimental traffic order - Hambrook traffic lights
  10. Alison Allan - subject: Climate emergency
  11. Cllr Clive Stevens - subject: Climate emergency
  12. Nikki Jones – subject: Local rail and other transport issues

 

At the invitation of the Chair, and in accordance with the constitution, those in attendance were given the opportunity to present their items.  It was noted that the full text of the statements/petition, and questions/replies had been circulated to committee members in advance of the meeting and would be available to view on the Combined Authority’s website.

9.

Petitions from any member of the West of England Combined Authority Committee

To receive any petitions to be presented by any member of the West of England
Combined Authority Committee.

 

Minutes:

No petitions had been notified for this meeting.

 

10.

Combined Authority governance and constitution pdf icon PDF 3 MB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered a report setting out proposed changes to Combined Authority governance and constitutional arrangements (agenda item 10).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

·         The revised governance arrangements were summarised in the flowchart at Appendix 1.

 

·         The full details of the constitutional changes were set out in Appendix 2 - the main changes involved:

 

-       Reducing the number of formal meetings, to make best use of time across authorities; and helping to ensure that succinct and timely reports were prepared to help embed a culture of transparent decision making and partnership working.

 

-       Enhancing the role of constituent council Cabinet member portfolio holders - as part of the new governance, 4 new Boards covering Transport, Planning & Housing, Business and Skills would replace the 3 advisory boards.

 

The Chair also advised that following discussion with all the authorities, there was an amendment to add an additional recommendation to the report, as follows:

That an additional recommendation 5 be added as follows:

5. To note that the Deputy Mayor will support the Combined Authority Mayor in ensuring that the governance arrangements for the Combined Authority ensure effective and efficient delivery of the Combined Authority’s strategies and priorities for the region.

 

The report recommendations, as amended above, were then moved by the Chair and seconded by Cllr Savage.

 

Cllr Savage stressed the importance, through the revised governance arrangements, of ensuring effective and timely delivery of the Combined Authority’s priorities.

 

Cllr Romero expressed the view that it was important to ensure transparency in decision-making, with continued opportunities for public engagement.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations, as amended above.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To adopt the new proposed governance arrangements as shown in the flowchart in Appendix 1.

2. To agree the changes proposed to the Authority’s constitution as summarised in the report and shown more fully in the highlighted version of the Constitution at Appendix 2.

3. To note the position regarding nominations from constituent councils to WECA committees.

4. To approve the Pay Policy Statement at Appendix 3.

 

5. To note that the Deputy Mayor will support the Combined Authority Mayor in ensuring that the governance arrangements for the Combined Authority ensure effective and efficient delivery of the Combined Authority’s strategies and priorities for the region.

 

11.

Combined Authority & Mayoral budget outturn report - April-May 2019 pdf icon PDF 369 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered the latest Combined Authority and Mayoral budget outturn report (agenda item 11).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

·         Appendix 1 set out the Mayoral Fund’s forecast revenue outturn position for the 2019/20 financial year, which, overall was £1,231k lower than the revised budget, largely due to slippage on grant funded feasibility projects; as this slippage was funded by grants also brought forward, the net position remained balanced.

 

·         Appendix 2 set out the Combined Authority’s estimated revenue outturn position for the 2019/20 financial year, which, overall was £2,968k higher than the original budget; the net position remained balanced as the spend was fully funded from income and reserves.

 

·         Appendix 3 outlined the current capital budget forecast for the 2019/20 financial year. 

 

  • The report also sought committee approval to create an earmarked reserve of £250k, funded through surplus interest on balances, to fund the appointment of 3 programme management office staff.  Authority was also sought to transfer additional pothole action funding of £662k to the 3 constituent authorities.

 

The report recommendations were then moved by the Chair and seconded by Cllr Savage.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To note the Mayoral Fund and WECA revenue and capital budget outturn forecasts as set out in Appendices 1,2 and 3.

 

2. To approve the creation of an earmarked reserve of £250k, funded through surplus interest on balances, to fund the appointment of three Programme Management Office staff.

 

3. To approve the transfer of additional Pothole Action Funding of £662k to the three constituent authorities.

 

4. To delegate authority to the WECA S151 Officer to make all necessary adjustments to Mayoral and WECA Budgets, resulting from this report, to include:

* Carrying forward relevant reserves or grants to account for slippage against various projects from 2018/19;

* The addition of the recently received HIF preparation grant of £141k;

* The reduction in the BANES Transport Levy of £155k, to be funded from earmarked reserve.

 

12.

Treasury Management outturn report 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 379 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered the Treasury Management outturn report for 2018/19 (agenda item 12).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

  • The report provided a review of treasury management performance to 31 March 2019.

 

·         The average rate of investment return for 2018/19 had been 0.97%, which was 0.41% above the benchmark rate.

 

·         The authority’s prudential indicators for 2018/19 had been agreed by the committee on 2 February 2018 and performance against the key indicators was shown in Appendix 1.  All indicators were within target levels.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To note the Treasury Management Report to 31st March 2019, prepared in accordance with the CIPFA Treasury Code of Practice.

 

2. To note the Treasury Management Indicators to 31st March 2019.

 

13.

Integrated ticketing - future work pdf icon PDF 457 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered a report providing an update on the proposed next stages of the Integrated Ticketing project (agenda item 13).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

·         The committee was asked to endorse the outline programme and the formation of a programme board.

 

·         The report also set out a proposal to progress the phase 1 support for the project which would involve an initial draw down of £300k, on the basis that the authorities’ Chief Executives would consider and approve the required feasibility and development funding application.

 

The report recommendations were then moved by the Chair and seconded by Mayor Rees.

 

Mayor Rees stressed the ongoing importance of ensuring that key deadlines for project delivery were met.

 

Whilst supporting the proposals, Cllr Romero stressed that whilst unitary authority officers should have an appropriate level of involvement in this type of project, it was important to be mindful of resource constraints and ensure this did not have too much impact in terms of taking time away from those officers’ unitary authority core responsibilities.

 

Cllr Savage welcomed the proposals as the next step in progressing the integrated ticketing project.  It would be important to progress the project as quickly and effectively as possible.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To endorse the outline programme and approve the formation of a programme/projects board.

 

2. To note the proposed initial draw down of £300k to progress with the phase 1 officer support / potential external consultancy support and delegate approval of the detail of the award through a Feasibility and Development funding application to the West of England Combined Authority Chief Executive in consultation with the West of England Chief Executives.

 

3. To give authority for the Combined Authority’s Section 73 officer to lease equipment to small bus operators at less than market rate as set out in the contactless upgrade Full Business Case subject to state aid regulation compliance.

 

14.

Bus infrastructure delivery update pdf icon PDF 191 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered a report providing an update on bus infrastructure delivery (agenda item 14).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

·         The report set out background information on the work undertaken so far on the bus strategy and details of the approach to progress the bus infrastructure proposals.

 

·         The committee was asked to approve the recruitment of a senior project manager to co-ordinate the delivery of the proposals.  The report also set out a proposal for an initial draw down of £200k to support the next steps, on the basis that the authorities’ Chief Executives would consider and approve the required feasibility and development funding application.

 

The report recommendations were then moved by the Chair and seconded by Cllr Savage.

 

Mayor Rees reiterated his earlier comment about the ongoing importance of ensuring that key deadlines for delivery were met.  It would be important to communicate effectively to residents about the timeline by which they could expect to see improvements delivered through this programme.  The Combined Authority and the West of England unitary authorities must work together as effective partners in co-delivery.

 

Cllr Romero also stressed the importance of communicating information to residents about the expected benefits from the bus infrastructure programme; consultation on proposals must be meaningful and accessible to the region’s residents.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To endorse the approach to progress the bus infrastructure proposals.

 

2. To approve the recruitment of a senior project manager to co-ordinate the delivery of the bus infrastructure proposals in the short to medium term.

 

3. To note the proposed draw down of £200k to resource the bus programme, bus deal principles and progress the further development of the bus strategy in advance of public consultation; and delegate approval of the detail of the award through a Feasibility and Development Funding Application to the West of England Combined Authority Chief Executive in consultation with the West of England Chief Executives.

 

15.

Investment Fund pdf icon PDF 753 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered the latest Investment Fund report (agenda item 15).

 

The Chair highlighted that at the previous meeting in June, the committee had agreed an overall funding envelope of £350m for the period up to March 2023, reflecting the strong ambitions to drive forward projects which would bring very significant, positive improvements and impacts for residents right across the region.  The report being considered today sought approval to progress a significant number of projects to the next delivery stage.

 

The Chair then advised that following discussion with all the authorities, there was an amendment to add an additional recommendation 19 to the report (reflecting the proposal set out in para. 47 of the report), as follows:

That an additional recommendation 19 be added as follows

19. To note the submission of the Full Business Case for Invest Bristol and Bath with sustainable funding options to be considered further by the West of England s151 officers and delegate the funding award to the WECA Chief Executive in consultation with the West of England Chief Executives.”

 

The report recommendations, as amended above, were then moved by the Chair and seconded by Cllr Savage.

 

Cllr Savage welcomed the report in general, also drawing attention to the importance of endorsing the submission of the Western Gateway Major Road Network bids in South Gloucestershire; in time, this could potentially unlock further benefits for the region.  He also welcomed the recommendation that the Combined Authority would assume responsibility for the promotion and delivery of MetroWest Phase 2, subject to the update of the Development Services Agreement with Network Rail.

 

Cllr Romero welcomed the report.  She also suggested, particularly in light of the motion agreed earlier at the meeting, that climate emergency considerations/implications should be reflected in future reporting on the investment fund/programme.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations, as amended above.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

1. To endorse the submission of the Western Gateway Major Road Network (MRN) bids in South Gloucestershire.

 

2. To approve the outline business case for MetroWest Phase 1 subject to the supply of a detailed cost breakdown and an updated programme.

 

3. To award an additional £1.3m to progress Mass Transit development as set out in the Feasibility and Development Funding Application.

 

4. To award £212,500 to the Winterbourne/Frampton Cotterell bypass and Coalpit Heath/Westerleigh bypass study as set out in the Feasibility and Development Funding Application.

 

5. To award £100,000 to develop a Full Business Case for Local Walking and Cycling Infrastructure as set out in the Feasibility and Development Funding Application.

 

6. To award £300,000 to develop an Outline Business Case for Yate Park and Ride and £500,000 to develop Outline Business Cases for other sites as set out in the Feasibility and Development Funding Applications.

 

7. To approve the change request for the Cribbs Patchway MetroBus Extension project and the award of an additional £300,000.

 

8. To approve the Full Business Case for the On Bus Contactless Bank Card Payment  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Employment & Skills Plan pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered a report seeking approval of the Employment and Skills

Plan (agenda item 16).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

  • The development of a regional employment and skills plan was agreed as a priority in the Combined Authority’s Business Plan.  It was very timely that the plan was being brought for approval at the meeting today as the Local Industrial Strategy would be launched later that day.

 

  • The delivery of employment and skills interventions formed a key component of the Local Industrial Strategy, helping to ensure that residents and businesses will have access to the right support to enable them to contribute and benefit from regional growth.

 

The report recommendation was then moved by the Chair and seconded by Cllr Savage.

 

Cllr Savage welcomed the plan.  The implementation of the plan would bring benefits

to young people as they moved into employment, with an increasing number of them

hopefully exiting the school system in future having acquired the skills needed by

employers.

 

Mayor Rees stressed the importance of employers from all sectors offering

meaningful work experience placements to young people to help prepare them for

the workplace.  He also drew attention to and offered to share details of the Bristol

WORKS programme, an initiative run by the Bristol Learning City Partnership linking

the city’s schools with employers and training opportunities to help get young people

ready for employment.  It was vital to connect young people to pathways to

employment and give them the opportunity to acquire skills. The Bristol WORKS

‘template’ could potentially be extended to other sectors, e.g. the construction

industry and the creative industry sector.

 

The Chair then moved to the voting on the recommendations.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

- To approve the Employment & Skills Plan.

 

17.

Business Plan 2019/20 - quarter 1 progress report pdf icon PDF 414 KB

Report enclosed.

Minutes:

The committee considered the quarter 1 progress report on the 2019/20 Business Plan(agenda item 17).

 

The Chair highlighted the following points:

 

·         The Business Plan supported delivery of the operating framework and set out the key deliverables during 2019/20 for business, skills, housing and transport.

 

·         Regular reporting on progress in delivering the Business Plan was a key element of the Combined Authority’s overall performance management and operating framework, which was reviewed annually with Government.

 

·         The detail of the first quarterly report was set out at Appendix 1.

 

·         The key risks to delivery were recorded in the Corporate Risk Register as set out at Appendix 2.

 

The committee RESOLVED:

 

-  To note the first quarterly update on delivery of the 2019/20 Business Plan.

 

18.

Information item - Decisions taken at this meeting pdf icon PDF 223 KB

Details of the decisions taken at this meeting and the draft minutes of this meeting will
be published on the West of England Combined Authority website as soon as possible
after the meeting.

Minutes:

In closing the meeting, the Chair advised that details of the decisions taken at this meeting and the draft minutes of the meeting would be published as soon as possible on the Combined Authority website.