Report to follow.
The Cabinet accepted this report as urgent to enable consideration of the matter at the earliest opportunity (the next scheduled Cabinet meeting was due to take place on 13 July 2021) as the deadline for submission of a bid to the Levelling-Up and Community Renewal Funds was 18 June 2021.
This report sought approval of the business cases proposed for submission to central Government’s Levelling-Up Fund (LUF) and Community Renewal Fund. (CRF). The report and appendices were set out in Supplementary Agenda No.1
The report advised that the March 2021 Budget had introduced these two major new funding streams within the UK. The CRF would operate in 2021/22 only, with £204m for investment across the UK. The funding available was 90% revenue and 10% capital with individual projects asked to reflect this balance. All projects needed to demonstrate a contribution to the Government’s net zero or wider environmental considerations. Lead authorities were required to produce a shortlist of projects for submission to Government, up to a maximum value of £3m. Medway’s shortlist was set out at Appendix 1 to the report.
The report set out that the LUF focused on capital investment in local infrastructure with round one focusing on the themes of transport, regeneration and town centres and culture. Bids could respond to one or more of these themes. LUF projects had to be delivered by 31 March 2024, although exceptional projects can continue until 31 March 2025. Across all LUF rounds, Medway Council was eligible to submit three bids across any of the themes, including one shared with Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council and one transport-focussed bid. LUF projects were also required to demonstrate a contribution to the Government’s net zero or wider environmental considerations. Project summaries were set out at Appendix 2 to the report.
The Cabinet approved the suite of Community Renewal Fund (CRF) and Levelling-Up Fund (LUF) business cases for submission to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, as set out in Appendices 1 and 2 to the report.
The Cabinet agreed to delegate authority to the Director of Place and Deputy Chief Executive, in consultation with the Portfolio Holder for Strategic Regeneration, Inward Investment and Partnerships, to finalise and approve the business cases and submit them to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government by the 18 June 2021 deadline.
To enable the LUF and CRF bids to be submitted to government, in support of Medway Council’s established regeneration priorities.