Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Wednesday, 9th March, 2022 15:00

Venue: remotely - via Microsoft Teams

Contact: Democratic Services  M A Galvin

Media

Items
No. Item

645.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest from Members/Officers in accordance with the Members’ Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1 September 2008. 

 

Minutes:

All Officers other than the report Presenting Officer and Democratic Services Officers supporting the meeting, declared a prejudicial interest in Agenda item 7. and left the meeting whilst this item was being considered.

 

646.

Approval of Minutes pdf icon PDF 251 KB

To receive for approval the minutes of 9/2/2022

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED:                        That the minutes of Council dated 9 February 2022, be approved as a true and accurate record.

 

647.

Presentation to Council by representatives of the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service pdf icon PDF 113 KB

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented a report, which introduced representatives Huw Jakeway and Chris Barton from the South Wales Fire and Rescue Service to Council, for them to give an update on the work of the Service, etc.

 

Mr Jakeway firstly gave a brief introduction of the South Wales Fire Service, following which he passed over to Mr. Barton to give some financial context in terms of their submission.

 

He advised that the South Wales Fire Service covered the following County Borough’s with it detailed in brackets, how many Fire Stations/establishments that existed in each of these areas:-

 

·         Bridgend (8)

·         Rhondda Cynon Taf (9)

·         Vale of Glamorgan (4)

·         Caerphilly (5)

·         Merthyr Tydfil (2)

·         Blaenau Gwent (4)

·         Torfaen (4)

·         Monmouth (5)

·         Cardiff (4)

·         Newport (3)

 

He confirmed that each of the constituent Authorities committed a budget towards the operation of the South Wales Fire Service that was in proportion of the population of each of the areas, and in terms of Bridgend, this equated to £7.5m (9.5%) of the overall £79m budget. The Service also was supported financially by a nominal amount of grant funding allocation. 80% of this budget he explained, went to employers and included resource for the likes of Transport, Supplies, Training, Premises, Pensions and Capital Finance.

 

The revenue budget of the Service had increased over the last 10 years, though this was still well below inflation. South Wales Fire Service was one of 3 Fire Authorities in Wales, together with the Services in Mid and West and North Wales, both of which received larger budgets than the South Wales region.

 

In terms of budget pressures this year, a 1.5% pay award had been awarded, however, this came with some risks given the current RPI. All other inflation costs were absorbed within the Services existing Budgets including its Reserves. Though there was presently a projected underspend in the Service, this would be allocated to offset any risks associated with pay inflation. Grant funding from Welsh Government it was assumed would continue.

 

Mr. Jakeway then referred to the operational issues of the South Wales Fire Service, where he advised that all the investment that was made went towards making communities safe.

 

Prevention was considered extremely important, where a considerable financial commitment was made towards educating the public about areas of fire safety.

 

20,000 checks of homes were carried out annually, with assistance from other Utility companies, with homes of those deemed the most vulnerable being risk assessed in order to ensure they were safe. Checks in relation to fire safety were made, as were other checks at homes to prevent problems such as human trafficking and sexual or domestic abuse situations. Homes were also checked in terms of the most vulnerable, so that there was nothing in the areas that could exacerbate any accidents, ie trips and falls.

 

With support from Public Health Wales, smoke detectors were also fitted at homes where residents were also given anti-crime advice.

 

The South Wales Fire Service also integrated with Schools in terms of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 647.

648.

To receive announcements from:

(i) Mayor (or person presiding)

(ii) Members of the Cabinet

(iii) Chief Executive

 

Minutes:

Mayor

 

Over the past few week’s I have been visiting a number of individuals and groups to present them with their Mayors Citizenship Awards and it has been a pleasure meeting them all. There are still a number to be presented and will all be completed in the next week or so.

 

Next Monday I will be officially opening the Miners Memorial in Nantymoel adjacent to the site of the now demolished Berwyn Centre and I am sure this will be one of the highlights of my year as Mayor. Having grown up in Nantymoel it will be an honour to return to mark this special event and pay tribute to the many miners (my father being one of them) who spent many hours each day in the darkness underground but were the real building blocks of the valley.

 

It has been an experience and a pleasure the Chair these Council meetings over the past year, even if a little disappointing that we have not managed to get back into the Council chamber on a hybrid basis, but hopefully this will change soon. I would like to thank you all for not giving me too hard a time at these meetings, but I suppose we have not got through today as yet so who knows what may be in store.

 

As this will be the last Council meeting before the election I thought it worth just asking you all once more to make a donation to the two groups I am raising funds for this year - Lads & Dads and Bridgend Carers Centre. I will be participating in the Welsh 3 Peaks challenge on Saturday 2 April along with 21 other people who have signed up and we are all looking to try and raise funds for these two groups. The event will start around 4.00am on the Saturday and its likely we will be completing the event at Snowdon in the dark but all within 24 hours. Please make a donation via the BCBC Website on the Mayors page if you are able to and many thanks in anticipation of your support.

 

Finally, as Members may be aware, the following Committee meetings have been cancelled due to the pre-election period commencing on 21 March 2022:-

 

Democratic Services Committee – 24 March

Standards Committee – 29 March

Governance and Audit Committee – 31 March

 

The Governance and Audit Committee has been brought forward to the 15 March at 2pm with the agreement of the Chairperson. Regulatory Committees are permitted to be held within the pre-election period.

 

Democratic Services staff will remove the above appointments from Members and Officers calendars accordingly. The revised date for the Governance and Audit Committee has already been placed in Members/Officers calendars

 

Deputy Leader

 

Members may wish to warn their constituents that we are once again receiving calls from worried householders who have been targeted by scammers.

 

These criminals are issuing emails and are making direct phone calls to wrongly tell people that they are entitled  ...  view the full minutes text for item 648.

649.

To receive announcements by the Leader

Minutes:

I know that all members are saddened and appalled by the Russian invasion of Ukraine, causing a devastating humanitarian crisis that is unfolding, daily, live on our television screens.

 

The people of Bridgend County Borough and this Council continues to stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine as they bravely resist Putin’s armed forces.

 

As an area which already provides a home for both Russian and Ukrainian nationals, we stand together with our Ukrainian neighbours, and cannot imagine how they are feeling and coping, not knowing if their loved ones in Ukraine are safe and will survive the bombs and shells.

 

We also value and support our Russian residents who, like us, have condemned the illegal un-provoked aggression instigated by President Putin and continue to stand with Ukraine.

 

Just as Wales is a nation of sanctuary, so is Bridgend County Borough a place of sanctuary, and it has been heartening to see our local communities coming together to offer their support to the people of Ukraine with their messages, prayers and donations of money, medicine and other essential items.

 

An emotional public vigil took place at Dunraven Place in Bridgend town centre last Friday and was very well supported with very moving contributions from Ukrainians living in Wales, A second vigil is set to take place at Maesteg market square this Saturday 12 March at 10.00am.

 

Numerous local communities are organising their own collections for food, medicines and other essential items, and the Bridgend Association of Voluntary Organisations has been accepting drop-off donations of toiletries, personal hygiene and medical items at its community hub.

 

Alternatively, and this is the most effective way to help, people can donate funds to the Disasters Emergency Committee so that items can be purchased for Ukraine without the need to transport them from the UK.  Our people have shown their generosity, kindness and willingness to act even offering their own homes for the refugees fleeing the terror of war.  We need the UK government to match the people’s commitment.

 

Last week all Council Leaders in Wales through the Welsh Local Government Association met with Welsh Government Ministers to discuss our joint response to the humanitarian crisis in the country that grows by the day. Leaders confirmed that all local councils in Wales are ready to do whatever we can to help those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine and are making preparations, however our preparations are limited, as we have not received the information we urgently need from UK Government.

 

Over the weekend our WLGA Leader, Andrew Morgan wrote to the Prime Minister about the conflict, and this week as Presiding Officer together with all Group Leaders in a unanimous cross-party response reiterated the call for the UK Government to provide much more clarity and act with far greater urgency in responding to the refugee crisis. We have called for the current restrictive and bureaucratic visa scheme to be scrapped and scrapped now to enable those people trying to escape the war in Ukraine to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 649.

650.

Pay Policy Statement - 2022/2023 pdf icon PDF 360 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented a report, the purpose of which, was to seek Council approval for the Pay Policy Statement for 2022/2023 (Appendix 1 to the report). This is in response to legislative requirements and to provide openness and accountability in relation to how the Council rewards its staff.

 

The Human Resource Service Centre Manager, advised that the Council has a statutory requirement under the Localism Act to prepare a Pay Policy Statement for the new financial year, which needs to be approved and published by 31 March 2022.

 

The timing of the report ensures that the information is as up to date as is possible. This includes the NJC Pay Agreement effective from 1st April 2021, which has been agreed as recently as 28th February 2022.

 

The Pay Policy Statement provides the framework for decision making on pay and, in particular, decision making on senior pay.

 

He confirmed therefore, that whilst the Localism Act requires all authorities to develop and make public their policy on all Chief Officer remuneration, to achieve that transparency, pay details for all relevant groups are included.

 

In terms of Appendix 1 of the report, ie the Pay Policy Statement, the Human Resource Service Centre Manager statements, drew Members attention to Paragraph 6.6, that outlined the introduction of the Market Supplement Policy which as Members were aware, was approved at Council since the last Pay Policy Statement.

 

Paragraph 8 of the report then gave information upon Pay Relativities which the Authority are obliged to publish as part of the report. These have been updated from the previous year in line with salaries revised following the 2021 pay award, he added. 

A Member noted that a Town Councillor had recently said publicly, that BCBC paid male and females doing the same job different rates of pay. He asked the Human Resource Service Centre Manager if this statement was correct and also to expand upon or explain the difference between inequal pay and the gender pay gap

 

The Human Resource Service Centre Manager, advised that the Council are required to report their gender pay gap on an annual basis. The gender pay gap is the difference between the average (mean or median) earnings of men and women across a workforce.

 

At the last report submitted 31 March 2022, showed 13% pay gap which comparing median pay.

 

The gender pay gap is a measure of the difference in average pay of men and women, irrespective of their work, across the organisation.  It is different from equal pay, which compares how men and women are paid for carrying out the same or comparable roles.

 

The Council seeks to maintain the equal pay requirements within the Pay and Grading Structure by evaluating any new or changed roles through its Job Evaluation Scheme. This will ensure that all pay differentials can be objectively justified.

 

The Council does have a pay gap which is influenced by a number of factors including the composition and distribution of the workforce, as opposed to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 650.

651.

Outdoor Recreation Facilities and New Housing Development Supplementary Planning Guidance pdf icon PDF 449 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director – Communities submitted a report, in order to seek Members approval to adopt SPG5 - Outdoor Recreation Facilities and New Housing Developments as Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) to the Bridgend Local Development Plan (LDP).

 

As part of some background information, the Strategic Planning Team Leader advised that recreational areas are vital for our health, well-being and amenity and contribute to an area’s green infrastructure. They provide a place for play, sport, healthy physical activity and relaxation often in the presence of nature.

 

The development of new housing in the County Borough, and the resulting population increase, creates a demand for the improvement of existing and provision of new recreational facilities, he confirmed.

 

The Strategic Planning Team Leader confirmed that SPG5 will act as a key tool in meeting that demand, by providing advice and guidance to developers on how the standards required by the Local Development Plan policy can be met. 

 

In summary the SPG sets out:

 

·         The national and local Planning Policy context to outdoor recreational provision;

·         The Council’s policy and practice relating to recreational spaces;

·         Guidance notes explaining the circumstances, mechanisms, types and amount of recreational space that will be sought on residential developments;

·         Explanation of the circumstances where financial contributions towards recreational facilities may be sought;

·         Encouragement for developers and prospective applicants to engage the Planning Department in pre-application discussions; and

·         Guidance on how the policy will be administered.

 

On the 16 January 2020 the Development Control Committee approved a draft version of the SPG as the basis for public consultation; authorised officers to make appropriate arrangements for public consultation; and agreed to await a further report on the outcome of the consultation process.

 

A 6-week period of public consultation was held between 21 February and 3 April 2020. The consultation was advertised in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 4.2 of the report.

 

By the end of the consultation period nine representations were received on the draft SPG. These representations have been summarised in Appendix 1 to the report.

 

On 3 March 2022, the Development Control Committee considered all of the representations and agreed changes to be made to the document in light of the comments received. These were incorporated as amendments to the SPG attached at Appendix 2 of the report.

 

The Strategic Planning Team Leader stated that, Members will note from the bullet points at paragraph 4.4 of the report, that the proposed amendments are limited to relatively simple points of clarification and he added that this reflected the amount of work that went into the draft SPG in the first place. He acknowledged the input of the Mayor in this, who has called for the introduction of this SPG for a number of years and his personal and professional input had been invaluable and ensured that all County Borough Members have had a voice in the process.

 

The Officer concluded his submission, by adding that the SPG expands upon the existing land-use planning policy framework contained within the LDP,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 651.

652.

The Placemaking Charter Wales pdf icon PDF 291 KB

Minutes:

The Corporate Director – Communities submitted a report, the purpose of which, was to seek Council’s approval that Bridgend County Borough Council endorses and becomes a signatory to the Placemaking Charter Wales. 

 

By way of background information, the Group Manager, Planning and Development Services, advised that Placemaking is a proactive and collaborative process of creating and managing places. Although the Local Planning Authority may be considered as the main proponent, the placemaking agenda goes effectively beyond the Planning and related functions of the Council which has cross-disciplinary connections to multiple service areas across local government and its related partners in order to contribute to the effective creation and management of places.

 

The Placemaking Wales Charter, launched in September 2020, has been

developed by Welsh Government and the Design Commission for Wales in

collaboration with the Placemaking Wales Partnership. This consists of

stakeholders representing a wide range of interests and organisations working within the built and natural environment. The Charter is intended to reflect the collective and individual commitment of these organisations to support the development of high-quality places across Wales for the benefit of communities.

 

He continued by confirming that, signatories to the Placemaking Wales Charter agree to promote the following principles in the planning, design and management of new and existing places:-

 

  • People and community;
  • Location;
  • Movement;
  • Mix of uses;
  • Public Realm, and;
  • Identity

 

A descriptor in terms of expanding upon each of these, was detailed in the Officer’s report.

 

The Group Manager, Planning and Development Services continued by stating, that in terms of its function, as a signatory to the Placemaking Charter the Council would pledge to:

 

·         Involve the local community in the development of proposals;

 

·         Choose sustainable locations for new development;

 

·         Prioritise walking, cycling and public transport;

 

·         Create inclusive, well defined, safe and welcoming streets and public spaces;

 

·         Promote a sustainable mix of uses to make places vibrant;

 

·         Value and respect the positive distinctive qualities and identity of existing places.

 

He added that the Welsh Government’s ‘Future Wales 2040’ document provides the National Development Plan and contains a specific policy requiring the public sector to show leadership and apply placemaking principles to support growth and regeneration for the benefit of communities. It states under Policy 2: “The public sector must lead by example and apply placemaking principles to create exemplar developments. In particular, (it) must prioritise design quality, innovation and sustainability.”

 

The Group Manager, Planning and Development Services, stated that Placemaking is now recognised as a function of the Planning and Development Services Group in the Communities Directorate Business Plan 2021/22. Both the Development Control Committee and the Planning Service are best placed to act as the Council’s placemaking champions to ensure new development complies with the principles set out in the Charter. There is aspiration to set up a ‘Placemaking Unit’ within the team drawing from existing expertise as well as taking on additional resource and suitable training in order to provide the necessary placemaking input into new schemes. This would include the Council’s own projects  ...  view the full minutes text for item 652.

653.

Related Party Transactions 2021-22 & Statement of Accounts pdf icon PDF 224 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change presented a report, in order to inform Council of the requirement for Members to formally declare any related party transactions for the financial year 2021-22 by completing the declaration attached at Appendix A, even if it is a nil return. This must also be completed no earlier than 31 March 2022 and returnedby Friday 8 April 2022.

 

She explained that the preparation of the Statement of Accounts is a requirement of the Accounts and Audit (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2014 (as amended) and its content is defined by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA’s) ‘Code of Practice on Local Authority Accounting in the United Kingdom’ 2021-22 (the Code).

 

The Code 2021-22 states that “Authorities shall identify related party relationships and transactions, identify outstanding balances between the authority and its related parties, and identify the circumstances in which disclosures are required”. Any related party transactions must then be disclosed within the Statement of Accounts. 

 

The requirement to declare related party transactions is not new within the Statement of Accounts, the Chief Officer – Finance, Performance and Change announced.

 

This report was therefore to inform Members of the requirement to complete the declaration attached at Appendix A with reference to the guidance attached at Appendix B by Friday 8 April 2022.  It is essential that this form is completed as at 31 March 2022 and covers the full financial year or period for which the individual was a Member of the Council. Members should note that a copy of this declaration will be emailed separately to their Bridgend County Borough Council email address for completion and return.

 

RESOLVED:                              That Council noted the requirement for  Members to:

 

·         Formally declare any related party transactions for the financial year 2021-22;

·         Complete and date the return no earlier than 31 March 2022;

·         Submit the return by Friday 8 April 2022

 

654.

Petition Scheme pdf icon PDF 137 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer submitted a report, seeking Council approval and adoption of the Petition Scheme attached thereto at Appendix 1. 

 

The Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021 received Royal Assent on 20 January 2021 and places specific duties on local authorities including, under Section 42, the duty to make a Petition Scheme including provision of a facility for electronic petitions (e-petitions). This provision comes into force in May 2022. 

 

Under the 2021 Act, she explained that the Council must publish a Scheme setting out how it intends to handle and respond to petitions.

 

The Monitoring Officer explained, that petitioning is one way that individuals, community groups and organisations can participate in the democratic process, by raising issues of public concern with the Council and allowing Elected Members to consider the need for change within the County Borough. It is acknowledged that petitions can have positive outcomes that lead to change or inform debate.

 

The Scheme attached at Appendix 1 (to the report), demonstrated this by setting out that petitions received from those who are resident, working or studying in the Borough, regardless of the number of signatures, will receive a response providing they follow the guidelines set out in the Scheme. The purpose of this Scheme is to establish a clear process for petitions submitted to the Council to be handled in accordance with the relevant legislation. 

 

The Scheme provides that if a petition has received more than 750 signatures the petition will be considered at a meeting of the full Council. The petition organiser will be informed in writing about when the debate will be held and with sufficient notice to enable their attendance.

 

The Council will host an e-petition facility on its website, provided by Mod.gov, which is the most widely used local authority committee management system. The Scheme stipulates that e-petitions must follow the same guidelines as paper petitions. An e-petition organiser must provide their name, address, a valid postcode and email address. The same information is required for any person supporting the petition, the Monitoring Officer added.

 

To conclude her report, the Monitoring Officer advised that in accordance with the 2021 Act, the Council must review the Scheme from time to time and, if it considers it appropriate, revise the Scheme.  If the Council revises or replaces a Scheme, the revised or new Scheme will be published on the Council’s website.

 

A Member referred to page 145 of the report and asked why a petitioners address was required on future e:petitions.

 

The Monitoring Officer confirmed that some of the contents of e:petitions were subject to legislative requirements, however, the e:petition content could be reviewed in future and modified accordingly if Members felt there may be a future requirement to do this.

 

A Member was aware that e:petitions could be submitted through a system known as Change.Org and he asked if the Council could accept this through this method as well as through the Council’s own database system of Modern.Gov.

 

The Monitoring Officer did not believe  ...  view the full minutes text for item 654.

655.

Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales Annual Report 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 428 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer presented a report, that advised Council of the Annual Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales (“the Panel”) in respect of the level and range of remuneration the Authority must make available to its elected members for the 2022/23 municipal year.

 

As part of some background information, she confirmed that the Local Authorities (Allowances for Members) (Wales) Regulations 2007 provided for the establishment of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales.

 

This was the fourteenth Annual Report of the Panel, and the eleventh published under the requirements of the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 (attached as Appendix 1 to the report). The Measure extended the responsibilities of the Panel and its powers under Section 142 to decide (prescribe) payments to members of relevant authorities.

 

The Panel’s Determinations for 2022/23 were shown at Annex 1 of the Annual Report (page 61 onwards). Section 153 of the Measure empowers the Panel to require a relevant authority to comply with the requirements imposed on it by the Annual Report.

 

The Monitoring Officer confirmed that the Panel’s Annual Report 2022/23, proposed some changes to the current remuneration prescribed for elected members at Principal (County Borough) and Town and Community Council levels.

 

The paragraphs in the report from 4.2 to 4.17, summarised the key elements of the overall Report and the Monitoring Officer expanded upon some of this information, for the benefit of Members.

 

The Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 requires the Panel’s Annual Report to take effect from 1 April. In most years, this is in line with financial and administrative arrangements of all authorities. However, when new councils are elected some of the Panel’s determinations are to be effective for the new municipal term.  On 9 May 2022, new municipal arrangements will come into effect following local government elections. This Annual Report therefore has two different effective dates as set out below:

 

  • For the period 1 April 2022 to 8 May 2022, all of the Determinations contained in the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales’ Annual Report 2021/22 will continue to apply in respect of principal councils and Community and Town Councils;
  • With effect from 9 May 2022, (the new municipal year) the Determinations set out in this Annual Report 2022/23 in the sections on principal councils and community and town councils will apply. 

 

A Member asked when the opportunity would arise, to discuss what senior salaries would possibly apply to the various political positions in the Authority following the forthcoming Local Government elections.

 

The Monitoring Officer confirmed that this would take place at the Annual meeting of Council in May.

 

RESOLVED:                                

 

That Council noted the Annual Report for 2022/23 and approved:

 

1.         The adoption of the relevant Determinations of the Panel contained within the Annual Report (attached as Appendix 1);

 

2.         Those posts (shown in the revised Members’ Schedule of Remuneration at Schedule 1 of Appendix 2) who will receive a senior / civic salary;

 

3.         The revised Members’ Schedule of Remuneration (Appendix 2) and for it to become effective  ...  view the full minutes text for item 655.

656.

Information Reports for Noting pdf icon PDF 264 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chief Officer Legal and Regulatory Services, HR and Corporate Policy (and Monitoring Officer), reported on the Information Reports which had been published since the last meeting of Council.

 

RESOLVED:                               That Council acknowledged the publication of the documents listed in the report.

                         

657.

To receive the following Question from Councillor Altaf Hussain to the Deputy Leader/Cabinet Member - Communities:

Cllr Altaf Hussain to the Deputy Leader/Cabinet Member – Communities

 

Councils are the first line of support for building self-employed businesses back up after the pandemic. For many self-employed people, the pandemic has been not only a health crisis but also an income crisis. Many freelancers in Wales did not get financial support from government and IPSE research found one in four burned through all their savings.

 

How is the Bridgend Local Authority investing in our areas’ smallest businesses and what help is there for freelancers?

 

Minutes:

 

Question

 

Councils are the first line of support for building self-employed businesses back up after the pandemic. For many self-employed people, the pandemic has been not only a health crisis but also an income crisis. Many freelancers in Wales did not get financial support from government and IPSE research found one in four burned through all their savings.

 

How is the Bridgend Local Authority investing in our areas’ smallest businesses and what help is there for freelancers?

 

Response

 

Bridgend County Borough Council offers a range of business support and is committed to supporting business growth. Officers have the knowledge and experience to help those who are planning to   set up or expand a business in Bridgend County from all sizes of organisations such as small start-up projects to large multi-national companies. Officers convert as many enquiries as possible into business success and continue to help the business grow and develop.

 

The Enterprise team can provide ongoing business advice and support including:

 

           New premises support

           Networking opportunities via the Bridgend Business Forum

           Recruitment

           Skills

           Training

 

Employability Bridgend work with both employed and unemployed people across Bridgend County Borough and can provide free training and mentoring support. Including for people in employment wanting to improve their employment situation they can provide support to increase working hours, move into a different job, progress into a better job, and achieve a higher income.  Once a business is trading then the project can help with recruitment and also with skills for the owner and staff.

 

The Rebel Business Schools (Pop-Up Business School) consist of 5 full-day sessions supporting people into self-employment and teaching them how to set up a business for free, usually this is run annually. Rebel Business Schools are also developing a 1-day course to run a few times a year.  The approach is very engaging and gives wary people confidence to make the first steps.

 

The Council’s Economic Futures Fund supports start-ups and adaptations to business properties which help support the economy both during the coronavirus pandemic and beyond.

 

They include:

 

Bridgend Business Start Up funding providing grants of between £250 and £4,000 to new start-ups and businesses within the first 3 years of trading. Initially £150,000 will be available in   2021/2022.

 

Covid-19 Outdoor Improvement Recovery Fund providing grants of up to £10,000 for business premises adaptations that respond to restrictions arising from the coronavirus pandemic and develop future resilience. Initially £350,000 will be available for this Fund in 2021/2022.

 

The Council also offers a flexible grant scheme delivered through a partnership with UK Steel Enterprise and Bridgend County Borough Council. It provides financial assistance to new or existing micro-businesses that are located, or are planning to locate, in Bridgend County Borough. The grant can provide up to 50% of eligible projects costs. The minimum grant is £250 and the maximum grant available is £4,000 so the maximum project cost is £8000.

 

Supplementary question from Councillor Altaf Hussain

 

How many freelancers in Bridgend have applied for financial  ...  view the full minutes text for item 657.

658.

Urgent Items

To consider any item(s) of business in respect of which notice has been given in accordance with Part 4 (paragraph 4) of the Council Procedure Rules and which the person presiding at the meeting is of the opinion should by reason of special circumstances be transacted at the meeting as a matter of urgency. 

 

 

Minutes:

None.