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Chief Executives' Group - North Yorkshire and York - minutes of meeting 4 June 2021

Minutes of a meeting of the group held on 4 June 2021 via Microsoft Teams.

Present:  
Richard Flinton North Yorkshire County Council
Caroline O'Neill Community First Yorkshire
Tony Clark Richmondshire District Council
Paul Shevlin Craven District Council
Mike Greene Scarborough Borough Council
Tom Hind North York Moors National Park Authority
Wallace Sampson Harrogate Borough Council
Phil Cain North Yorkshire Police (on behalf of Lisa Winward)
Stacey Burlet Ryedale District Council
Janet Waggott Selby District Council
Andrew Brodie North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service
David Butterworth Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority
In attendance:  
James Farrar York and North Yorkshire LEP
Odette Robson North Yorkshire County Council
Karl Battersby North Yorkshire County Council
Neil Irving North Yorkshire County Council
Deborah Hugill North Yorkshire County Council (secretariat)
Apologies:  
Amanda Bloor North Yorkshire CCG
Justin Ives Hambleton District Council
Ian Floyd City of York Council
Lisa Winward North Yorkshire Police


1. Minutes of last meeting - 12 February 2021 - and matters arising.

The minutes were agreed as a true record and there were no matters arising.
 

2. Covid-19 update

Richard Flinton gave an update on the current Covid situation.

Levels across the county are starting to slowly increase and cases of the Delta variant are being reported.

There was a discussion about surge testing and it was confirmed that District Councils will be involved from the beginning if this becomes necessary in North Yorkshire. Enhanced vaccine rollout is not being considered at the moment because of the relative low levels of infections in the county but will be looked at if required.

The voluntary and community sector is working well with Public Health and have plans for cascading information.


 

2. Domestic Abuse Act 2021

Odette Robson presented a report on the introduction of the new Domestic Abuse Act 2021, including the implications that this will bring to arrangements and the local partnership approach. The Act introduces a duty on local authorities to provide support to victims of domestic abuse and their children in refuges and other safe accommodation.

Following a multi-agency needs assessment a joint local strategy regarding safe accommodation must be published by August 2021. Funding has been allocated by Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government. It was agreed that the best approach is to pool this money initially and target the areas which are identified through the needs assessment.

The provision of accommodation for perpetrators was discussed and it was confirmed that there was already some support for those willing to work with services, including accommodation, but that there were gaps in provision. The Secretary of State will be publishing a domestic abuse perpetrator strategy as part of a holistic domestic abuse strategy.

Work is also underway to support more victims to be able to stay safely in their own homes.

There was a discussion about refreshing the local domestic abuse strategy to ensure that it covers support for particular focus areas, such as rurality and military communities.

It was felt that registered social landlords had a big part to play and links should be further developed. Links should also be strengthened with areas bordering North Yorkshire as local provision may not be suitable for victims to be safe from abusers.

Whilst the report focussed particularly on safe accommodation, the Act is likely to have further implications on multi-agency working arrangements on domestic abuse and a range of colleagues will need to be involved. Domestic abuse is a priority for the community safety partnership so this will be taken forward.

The importance of data and intelligence, available at the appropriate level, was also discussed.

 

4. Contest arrangements (North Yorkshire and York)

Paul Shevlin presented a report detailing proposed new CONTEST partnership arrangements.

After discussion, the group agreed that merging Prevent work with the more enforcement-led elements of the strategy could risk damaging community cohesion and safeguarding work and that time should be taken to make the right decision about the way forward. It was also felt that the imminent decision about local government reorganisation in North Yorkshire and York should be considered and that learning from nearby areas, such as West Yorkshire, would be valuable.

It was agreed to recommend to Prevent Board that any changes be paused while further research is undertaken.

ACTION: PS

 

5. Review of the National Park Management Plan - North York Moors

Tom Hind gave a presentation on the current review of the North York Moors National Park Management Plan. This sets the vision and strategy for the National Park. It was last reviewed in 2016 and needs to be in place for April 2022.

He provided the context in which the review was taking place including COVID recovery, agricultural transition and the greater emphasis on climate change.

A partnership approach is being taken to develop the plan, and three thematic working groups have been set up: nature recovery, landscapes for all and living and working. Colleagues from organisations represented at the meeting have been contributing to this process.

He gave the headline issues for each of the themes and emphasised the need for National Parks to be seen as integral to the broader agenda in the region. The need for partnership working to deliver the plan was also important.

The following points were made during the ensuing discussion:

  • There is a need to improve data collection and quality. The LEP may be able to help with this through a proposed Smart Farming project.
  • Mention of flooding and the role of the National Park in providing resilience will be strengthened.
  • Devolution asks around natural capital should be reviewed.
  • Better connections between the National Parks and the Regional Climate Commission will be made.
  • Flexible working and transport and access to health provision should be picked up in the living and working theme

Environmental land management schemes were raised and it was agreed that Tom Hind, David Butterworth and James Farrar will meet to discuss developments which are anticipated prior to these schemes being launched.

ACTION: TH/DB/JF
 

6. Devolution update

James Farrar presented a report providing an update on progress on devolution and an initial review of the asks. There will be task and finish groups to work on more detailed refinement of each ask.

There was a discussion about the housing asks and the need to ensure that North Yorkshire and York is being sufficiently ambitious and not missing out on funding opportunities. Although housing target numbers are being met, more needs to be done to understand the gaps and what is needed from central government to help address them. The role of community housing was also raised and James undertook to feed this into the conversation.

Discussions with government have been paused due to the imminent decision about local government reorganisation but a meeting with civil servants will be sought as soon as this is made.
 

7. LEP review briefing paper

James Farrar presented a paper on progress of the national LEP review. He emphasised the YNY LEP’s view that strong public/private partnership should be the basis of any future operating model and that this works best where aligned with any relevant Combined Authority.

Progress has stalled a little. The original deadline was the summer recess of Parliament but it may well be delayed. Core funding for the LEP is in place until the end of the financial year and is not guaranteed beyond that time. Ownership of the shared prosperity fund needs to be confirmed to allow work to go forward.

The importance of functional economic geographies and the need to collaborate across administrative boundaries were raised.


8. Report of the York, North Yorkshire, East Riding and Hull (YNYERH) Directors of Development Group

Karl Battersby presented a report on the work of the YNYERH Directors of Development (DoDs), covering the meetings from February to April 2021.

The community renewal fund and levelling up fund were discussed. Information about which community renewal bids are going forward will be shared shortly. A rail-based bid to round 2 of the levelling up fund is likely to be submitted.

DoDs have agreed to fund further climate action work and this area of work is likely to increase.

Other topics covered included housing provision and the review of the North York Moors National Park Management Plan.

Future areas of work:

  • Housing design guide
  • Historic environment and role in regeneration
  • Environment and waste bill
  • Relationship with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority – hope to develop a joint forward programme

There was a question raised about working with the Tees Valley Combined Authority in relation to freeports and ministry relocations and the likely impact for North Yorkshire and York. Karl will pick this up with James Farrar.

ACTION: KB


9. LGNYY meeting 2 July 2021

A report was received asking for members of the group to identify business for consideration at the next meeting of LGNYY on 2 July 2021.

It was agreed that information about the community renewal fund bids and levelling up fund bid should be included in the LEP update to Leaders.


ACTION: DH/JF

 

10. Any other business

Jane Colthup is the new Chief Executive of Community First Yorkshire starting shortly. Introductory meetings will be set up with members of the group.


11. Date and time of next meeting

Friday 3 September 2021 10am - 12 noon.