Agenda item

Shared Prosperity Fund - Scrutiny Board Update

To consider a report from the Head of Democratic Services that provides an update on the UK Shared Prosperity Fund and the work undertaken to develop priorities at a regional and Leeds level.  


The report of the Head of Democratic Services provided an update on progress towards delivering the UK Shared Prosperity Fund in Leeds and followed consideration of the item at Executive Board in October.


In attendance for this item were:

·  Cllr J Pryor – Executive Member for Economy, Culture and Education

·  Eve Roodhouse – Chief Officer, Economy and Culture


Members were informed of the following points:

·  The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) is administered by the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities and is the replacement for the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) following the UK leaving the EU.

·  Appendix 1 is a report considered by Executive Board at its meeting on 19th October and sets out high level priorities for Leeds and the region.

·  UKSPF can be used alongside other funding streams such as Levelling Up Fund and West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) gainshare funding.

·  The leading agency in the region for UKSPF is WYCA, working in partnership with the five West Yorkshire Authorities.

·  £2.6bn of funding is available nationally between 2022/23 and 2024/25. £0.4bn in 2022/23, £0.7bn in 2023/24 and £1.5bn in 2024/25 mainly in revenue funding.

·  The three Government priorities for the UKSPF are:

o  Pillar 1 – Local Communities and Place

o  Pillar 2 – Support for Business

o  Pillar 3 – People and Skills (this includes Multiply a programme aimed at tackling low levels of adult numeracy)

·  The allocation for West Yorkshire is £80,486,557. At the WYCA meeting held on 21st October, £9,393,538 was approved for allocation to Leeds. The funding delegated to local authorities is expected to be primarily for Pillar 1 with delivery of funding for Pillars 2 and 3 subject to a separate approval process.

·  The Council is engaging with voluntary, community and faith sectors as well as arts organisations to maximise the impact of the funding on local communities.

·  WYCA and the five local authorities have developed a Local Investment Plan which sets out the priorities for West Yorkshire for approval by the Government. The majority of the funding is revenue and as a result there is a risk of funding being lost if unspent at year end. Therefore, with a need to maximise available funding in year 1 there is a focus on projects and initiatives that are already in development.


In response to questions from Members the Board were provided with the following information:

  • The Local Investment Plan was submitted to the Government in July 2022 and are still awaiting a response. Until confirmation is given the projects cannot go ahead.
  • Members discussed paragraph 34 of the submitted report and noted that UKSPF represents a significant reduction in funding, compared to the previous ESIF funding although it was accepted that ESIF funding is still available in Year One of the UKSPF programme meaning that two funding streams are accessible in the current financial year. Given the financial challenges faced nationally members were concerned that the assumption that UKSPF funding would increase in Years Two and Three, once ESIF funding ceases, would not now be the case. Members were keen to understand the total funding envelope when compared to ESIF and particularly following the Autumn Statement on 17 November.
  • Board Members were also concerned about impacts on staffing of any funding shortfall, with a significant number of council programmes and staff currently funded through ESIF schemes, UKSPF could create a significant risk to key employment and skills and business support programmes. However, it was noted that risk assessments are in place for services with significant funding through ESIF to mitigate against potential loss of funding and the resulting impact on staff and programme delivery.
  • It was noted that there were still ongoing investment opportunities and there was confidence that funding would be in place for programmes to be delivered in 2022/23.




a)  To note the content of the report and consider any further scrutiny actions that may arise.


b)  Additional detail on UKSPF funding in future years to be provided by the Principal Scrutiny Advisor once Government announcements are made.


Cllr Carlill left the meeting at 12:15



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