The North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) is setting out how it intends to create more and better jobs in the region – and Capita is playing a crucial role in the work.
In March 2014, the LEP formally submitted its draft Strategic Economic Plan to government setting out its proposals for long term economic growth across the LEP area with the primary objective of creating 60,000 new jobs by 2024.
The plan is currently being reviewed by ministers and outlines the LEP’s bid for its share of the £2bn Single Local Growth Fund and its ‘asks’ of Government to support the delivery of business and economic investment in new ways.
Sustainable economic growth sits at the heart of the LEP’s strategy and to demonstrate its sustainability credentials, the LEP committed to undertaking a formal Strategic Environmental Assessment in line with national regulations.
Capita was commissioned to prepare the first limb of the appraisal, the Scoping Report, which provides the baseline by which the plan will be formally assessed against.
From the outset, a small team from Capita’s Carlisle and North Tyneside offices advised the LEP on the procurement of the project, the specific outputs needed, the project timescales and the type of consultation that was necessary to deliver the project.
North Tyneside Council’s legal team also provided great support and comfort to the client that, as a fellow public authority, they could utilise the North Tyneside contract to draw on Capita’s services. The contract is OJEU compliant and has sufficient headroom in the value for other authorities to access Capita’s services under clause 3.
The Scoping Report was delivered on time and as per the project specifications. In getting there, the team appraised over 400 plans and policies set internationally, nationally, regionally and locally to produce seven bespoke ‘state of the environment’ reports for the local authorities within the LEP area, alongside a separate report of the social, economic and environmental conditions of the region as a whole.
With the wealth of data we knew we had to get through and the timescales that we were working to, we had to quickly mobilise staff from the two offices. â€œAdmittedly, some of those timescales were self imposed, but we were acutely aware that this is only the first stage of the formal process. â€œIf the appraisal itself is to have any value, this too needs to be completed as soon as possible. That said, we also had to balance time factors against the need to do the job properly and we worked extremely closely with both the client and key stakeholders throughout the project.
Planning policy manager, Capita
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