Decision details

Witham Slea Blue/Green Corridor (Key Decision)

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: For Determination

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: No

Purpose:

An ERDF funded programme seeking to regenerate the waterways and green spaces in the locations of Grantham and Sleaford to provide a higher quality environment for residents and wider ecosystem which run the length of the urban areas.

Decision:

Decision

 

1.            That the authority enters into a Funding Agreement with the Ministry of Housing and Local Government

 

2.            To delegate the signing of the contract to the Cabinet Member for Growth and the Strategic Director, Growth

 

3.            That the authority appoints a suitable Cabinet Member to the board for this programme of works and delegates in-project decisions to the project board

 

4.            The Cabinet recommends to Council an amendment of £1,056,615 to the Budget Framework to include expenditure in relation to the Witham Slea Blue / Green programme as per the financing arrangements set out in paragraphs 1.1 and 1.2 of the report of the Cabinet Member for Growth

 

Reasons for decision

 

1.            The report of the Cabinet Member for Growth seeking authority to enter into a Funding Agreement with the Ministry of Housing and Local Government

2.            A grant in-principle of £743,831 from the European Regional Development Fund in April 2019 to deliver 14 projects along the Witham and Slea

3.            Match-funding from North Kesteven District Council, the Environment Agency and the National Trust

4.            Agreed funding from SKDC of £180,000 across 3 years from 2019 to 2022 (included within the 2019/20 Budget)

5.            South Kesteven District Council was acting as the lead partner in the programme

6.            South Kesteven District Council would enter into an agreement with the other partners to set out the terms of the partnership and safeguard SKDC with the delivery of the programme

7.            A two-person team employed by SKDC would manage the delivery of the project

8.            The outputs would support environmental and physical infrastructure for 6,000 houses across Grantham and Sleaford over the next 20 years, develop access for 13,700 residents, improve 7.05 hectares of blue/green areas and conserve 5 hectares of land

9.            The programme and projects align with the shared plans of Lincolnshire Rivers Trust, the Environment Agency, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust and North Kesteven and South Kesteven District Councils

10.         Presentations made to the Growth Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 13 December 2017 and 14 February 2018

11.         Consultation on specific projects with members of the public who represent local interest groups

 

Other options considered and rejected

 

Alternative options for delivering these projects were considered. However, the other environmental programmes (e.g. Countryside Stewardship Scheme) were unable to fund all of the projects. This would result in a fragmented delivery programme and omits the partnership and resources which are available for the proposed programme. The funding ratios would be lower and not all of the programme activities would have been eligible.

 

The project could continue without ERDF funding, but this would have the result of reducing the total operating budget by 60% to £492,786. This would severely impact the delivery of the projects and reduce the overall outputs of the programme that can be delivered. This option negatively impacts the support and resources of the overall scheme.

Report author: Lucy Bonshor

Publication date: 11/09/2019

Date of decision: 10/09/2019

Decided at meeting: 10/09/2019 - Cabinet

Accompanying Documents: