As Leader, I propose to:
1. Endorse the Strategic Investment Plan prepared by Transport for the South East (TfSE) and support TfSE with its implementation.
2. Delegate to the Corporate Director of Growth, Environment and Transport to take, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport, the actions necessary to implement the decision.
The Cities and Local Government Devolution Act 2016 amended the Local Transport Act 2008 to allow the creation of Sub-national Transport Bodies (STBs). There are now several shadow STBs in England, with Transport for the North becoming the only statutory STB since April 2018.
Transport for the South East (TfSE) is a partnership of 16 Local Transport Authorities and five Local Enterprise Partnerships. In July 2020, TfSE’s Shadow Board adopted a Transport Strategy. TfSE then embarked on a series of Area Studies and Thematic Strategies (Freight, Future Mobility and Decarbonisation) in August 2020, completing these in summer 2022. These studies collectively provided the evidence base for a Strategic Investment Plan that TfSE published in draft in July 2022 and undertook a public consultation on. At the TfSE Partnership Board on 14 November 2022, the Board membership endorsed changes that had been made to the Strategic Investment Plan given consultation feedback. This included consultation feedback made by Kent County Council. TfSE constituent member authorities are now tasked with endorsing the Strategic Investment Plan. Following this, TfSE will then submit the Plan in Spring 2023 to central Government for their consideration.
Data Protection Implications
A Data Protection Impact Assessment is not required as this project does not require the processing of personal data.
Decision type: Key
Reason Key: Affects more than two Electoral Divisions;
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Division affected: (All Division);
Notice of proposed decision first published: 20/12/2022
Decision due: Not before 18th Jan 2023 by Leader of the Council
Lead member: Leader of the Council
Department: Growth, Environment & Transport
Public consultation was undertaken on the TfSE Strategic Investment Programme. Kent County Council’s response to that was made transparent through its consideration at the September 2022 Environment and Transport Cabinet Committee.
The proposed key decision will be taken to Environment and Transport Cabinet Committee on 19th January 2023 by the Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport.
Financial implications: As a constituent authority, KCC contributes £58,000 per year to fund the development of TfSE. The Department for Transport (DfT) has set out indicative funding to TfSE to end of the 2024/25 Financial Year. Hence it is forecast that KCC will continue to pay an annual member contribution of £58,000 per annum for the life of the TfSE current forecast budget period to 2024/25. Doing so commits KCC to a further total £116,000 in payments to TfSE over the next two financial years and will take KCC’s total contribution to TfSE by end of 2024/25 to £388,000.
Legal implications: As TfSE will remain a non-statutory informal and voluntary group that KCC participates in, there are no legal implications of the planned decision.
Equalities implications: The TfSE SIP has had an Integrated Impact Assessment conducted which considered the impact of the SIP proposals on equalities. It concluded that the effect would be positive on the basis of improved connectivity and ease of making journeys within the region. The SIP indicates that assessment of equalities impacts should be undertaken should any of the proposals within the TfSE SIP be progressed. Should any of those proposals in the SIP be progressed by KCC, they will be subject to their own Equalities Impact Assessment and included as part of any future decision making.