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December 2020 HGB Meeting – Agenda Item 3

Published: 18 December 2020

Report Author: Patsy Dell, Hertfordshire Growth Board (Tel: 07949 887794)

1. Purpose of report

1.1 This report updates on the last stages of implementation of the Growth Board Statutory Joint Committees.

2. Background

2.1 By 17 December 2020, all Growth Board partners will have taken the proposal to establish joint committees through their formal democratic processes. Table 1 below outlines progress at the point of publication of the agenda papers.

2.2 Assuming partners have all secured the legal basis to form the joint committee the Growth Board Joint Committee needs to be constituted and the Integrated Governance Framework adopted as the Growth Board constitution for the joint committee. (Leaders will remember that the Growth Board Joint Scrutiny committee is not proposed to be constituted yet).

Table 1:

Growth Board Member Organisation

Cabinet/Committee Meeting dates for consideration of the Joint Committee Item Council Meeting dates for consideration of the Joint Committee Item
Borough of Broxbourne Council 21 October 2020 3 November 2020
Dacorum Borough Council 20 October 2020 18 November 2020
East Herts District Council 24 November 2020 16 December 2020
Hertfordshire County Council 19 October 2020 20 October 2020
Hertsmere Borough Council 11 November 2020 18 November 2020
North Hertfordshire District Council 22 October 2020 12 November 2020
St Albans City and District Council 22 October 2020 2 December 2020
Stevenage Borough Council 18 November 2020 16 December 2020
Three Rivers District Council 20 October 2020
Watford Borough Council 5 October 2020 13 October 2020
WelwynHatfield Borough Council 3 November 2020 23 November 2020
Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership Board Meeting 24 September 2020


2.3       Whilst the national picture and timetable in relation to Growth Deals has changed since MHCLG officials spoke to the Growth Board on 4 August 2020, the genesis of the Growth Board work was to further common cause and additionality across a range of interventions and supported areas felt to be important by Hertfordshire Leaders. This includes working together to deliver long-term beneficial growth and place related outcomes beyond that which the partners could secure on their own. This ambition across the wide breadth of programmes being pursued still remains the case even if there is greater uncertainty about the timetables for securing deals with Government.

2.4      The Growth Board provides the partners with:

  • Strategic direction, monitoring, delivery and co-ordination of current and future Growth Board strategy, identified programmes, projects and collective effort in pursuit of a Growth Deal.
  • A Governance body that secures strategic collaboration and delivery across the councils and with the LEP on place, economic performance and infrastructure matters.
  • Acts as the place leadership body for Hertfordshire that provides a single voice to Government, also identifies, promotes, lobbies for Hertfordshire’s interests and for funding.
  • Oversight, accountability for and prioritisation of the Growth Board Growth fund.

2.5   These activities along with the ambition to continue to strengthen and develop the Growth Board will be enhanced by continuing to move on the plans to implement the statutory joint committees.  At the Growth Board meetings on 4 August, 8 September and 13 October 2020, it was agreed to progress evolving the Growth Board Governance into a joint (s.101 type) committee and for that to commence in early 2021.

2.6   This step recognises advantages for Growth Board partners in signalling the strong local commitment to the Growth Board work, its delivery programmes and co-ordinating role now and in the future including:

  1. Establishment of the formal governance structure continues to build on the momentum and progress made by the Growth Board over the last two years,
  2. Helps maintain government and investor confidence in the visible alignment of business, political and civic support to delivery commitments in Hertfordshire,
  3. Increases openness and transparency in the work of the Growth Board
  4. Provides a governance vehicle that will allow Hertfordshire the place to continue to pursue common cause and collaborative joint working on the established programmes,
  5. Continues the Growth Board work and positions Hertfordshire in anticipation of and in readiness for any deal discussions or options that flow from HM Government in coming months.

3. Next Steps

3.1 The first Growth Board Joint Committee meeting is planned for 26 January 2021. The first meeting will formally constitute the joint committee, Leaders are asked to confirm their intention to constitute the joint committee so all necessary arrangements for the holding of that meeting under the new constitutional arrangements can now be put in place. A proposed draft agenda for the first joint committee meeting is included at item 4 on this agenda.

4. Recommendations

4.1 That Leaders/LEP Chair confirm:

a. The Hertfordshire Growth Board Statutory Joint Committee will be constituted at its first meeting on 26 January 2021 and the Integrated Governance Framework will be published on the Growth Board website as the constitution for the operation of the joint committees.

b. The implementation of the Growth Board Scrutiny Committee to be aligned to MHCLG confirmation of a Growth and Housing Deal, as previously agreed.