Issue details

21/00005 - Investment of Getting Building Funding in third-party projects

To agree that the Getting Building Funding (GBF) will be used to support the third-party project - St George’s Creative Hub project promoted by Gravesend Borough Council - that the South East Local Enterprise Partnership’s Strategic Board prioritised to receive GBF at its board meeting on 11 December 2020.

To act as the accountable body for third-party projects within Kent’s geographical boundaries that are selected by the SELEP to receive GBF grant funding.

To delegate to the Section 151 Officer the authority to sign on KCC’s behalf a grant agreement or equivalent, where this is required to draw down funds following business case approval.

This key decision is required to enable a grant agreement to be entered into so that the Government funding can be secured for St George’s Creative Hub project, promoted by Gravesend Borough Council. Due to the terms and conditions of the Government’s Getting Building Fund, this funding can only be spent on specific GBF projects.

Background

On 3rd July 2020, the Government informed the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP) that it would receive £85million of ‘Getting Building Fund’ (GBF) for ‘oven-ready’ schemes to stimulate economic recovery and help mitigate the impact that COVID-19 has had on employment levels. GBF is capital grant funding.

Kent County Council has previously taken decision 20/00086 in September 2020 which enabled the investment of GBF into four third-party delivered projects within Kent. One of the schemes covered by this decision is the construction of a New Performing and Production Digital Arts Facility at North Kent College, Dartford. Since the decision was taken, the project has submitted a full busines case which is seeking a lower amount of GBF than in the original expression of interest.

£323,204 of GBF is therefore available to allocate to next project on the GBF reserve which is St George’s Creative Hub project, promoted by Gravesend Borough Council.
Options (other options considered but discarded)
If Kent County Council were to choose to not enter into a grant agreement the GBF funding could be either (i) retained by central government or (ii) reallocated by SELEP to another project(s).

How the proposed decision meets the objectives of ‘Increasing Opportunities, Improving Outcomes: Kent County Council’s Strategic Statement (2015-2020)’ The GBF investment will help Kent County Council to deliver against its objectives within Increasing Opportunities, Improving Outcomes: Kent County Council’s Strategic Statement (2015-2020). Specifically, the capital grant investment will help deliver these outcomes:

Kent communities feel the benefits of economic growth by being in-work, healthy and enjoying a good quality of life.

Kent business growth is supported by having access to a well skilled local workforce with improved transport, broadband and necessary infrastructure.

Kent County Council supports well planned housing growth so Kent residents can live in the home of their choice.

Kent’s physical and natural environment is protected, enhanced and enjoyed by residents and visitors.

Decision type: Key

Decision status: For Determination

Notice of proposed decision first published: 04/01/2021

Decision due: Not before 2nd Feb 2021 by Leader of the Council
Reason: To enable notification of the proposed decision to be published on the FED for 28 days

Lead member: Leader of the Council

Lead director: David Smith

Department: Growth, Environment & Transport

Contact: Sarah Nurden, Kent and Medway Economic Partnership's Strategic Programme Manager 03000 416518 Email: sarah.nurden@kent.gov.uk Tel: 03000 416 518.

Consultees

The proposal is being considered at the Growth, Economic Development and Communities Cabinet Committee at its meeting in January 2021.


Financial implications: Kent County Council will enter into a capital grant agreement for £323,204. The GBF capital grant funding is provided by the Government via SELEP. It is not KCC funding.

Legal implications: The grant agreements give Kent County Council the legal and financial responsibility for ensuring the proper use and administration of the funding in accordance with the terms and conditions. The legal agreements will ensure that any potential claw back of GBF by the Government comes from the third-party project promoter, not from Kent County Council.

Equalities implications: Equalities implications - The third-party promoters are required to write an EqIA as a condition of their business case receiving SELEP Accountability Board approval. Data Protection implications - DPIA is not required, as personal data is not included in the grant agreements or project business cases.

Agenda items