To consider any responses of the Executive to reports of the Committee.
Councillor Reeve set out the details of the Economic Development Recovery Plan which he said would be integrated into the Climate Change agenda and reflected in the emerging Local Plan. The report was supported by Cabinet on the 24th November 2020 and approved by Full Council on the 8th December 2020 but had been impacted by the pandemic.
He had been asked to come up with performance indicators and measurable goals which were included in a framework for activities aimed at businesses and residents. There was a £1m budget over 3 years.
He explained that there were four main work themes and that each of these would have a breakdown of current, planned and additional activities as well as the resources required.
The themes were:-
In the short term two Officers had worked on allocating the Covid 19
Essex Business Adaptation Grant and the Social Media Training which included the ‘Click Local Uttlesford’ initiative. The team had also set up their own Service Plan and evidence of performance indicators to monitor the progress of the Economy Recovery Action Plan. This document will be used to prepare the Recovery Plan media update.
He also mentioned that there were two proposals with the Cambridge University Judge Business School which related to economic development. The proposals related to new businesses for Uttlesford and the green economy in Uttlesford. Teams of students had worked on a project for a month to produce practical results. Councillor Pavitt had also submitted a proposal regarding Uttlesford’s water issues and Councillor Reeve hoped that one or more of these would proceed.
Councillor Reeve asked the committee to join with him to thank everyone who had taken part in the development of the Recovery Plan.
Councillor Sell offered his help, and asked what the status of the group was in terms of finance and resources he said it was important to make an impact on businesses. He was impressed that the team were proactively contacting businesses to offer help.
Councillor Reeve said that help for businesses was critical. The outcome of the grant applications had highlighted that the full range of businesses in Uttlesford were not known. These unknown businesses which were not on the Business Rates register were being recorded and contacted with the offer of help and resources. The team was made up of 2 people. There was also recruitment underway.
Councillor Sell asked that future meetings were updated with further progress to help raise the understanding and profile of the team and to be passed onto the wider community through members.
Councillor Dean asked whether the Council could employ some people who had lost their jobs from the airport and elsewhere. He had noticed that the district was untidy, with litter and leaves as well as street furniture that looked very tired. He thought the Street Services team would benefit from additional resources to help tidy up the district ready for the summer and easing of restrictions and to provide employment.
The Assistant Director – Corporate Services said he would pass this on to the Environmental Services team.
Councillor Lavelle praised the Economic Development Recovery Team for proactively contacting businesses to advice on what support was available and said he recognised the effectiveness of the department.
The Chair and the Committee commended and thanked Councillor Reeve and the team for their outstanding work with limited resources; they had set clear objectives that were reported on and achieved.