The Marches LEP operates as a Company Limited by Guarantee and its Board comprises both private and public sector leaders, with a streamlined structure developed in the interests of minimising bureaucracy, cost and duplication; achieving speedy decision making and delivery; and sharing expertise and resources. The LEP Board Terms of Reference can be found here.

Formal arrangements have been put in place to ensure fast and effective decision-making together with democratic accountability for the substantial public funds that are required to deliver the Marches Strategic Economic Plan (SEP) and Growth Programme, including European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) and Single Local Growth Funds.

How decisions are made

The LEP’s Scheme of Delegation (SoD) clearly identifies what decisions remain the responsibility of the LEP Board and what decisions can be made by the LEP Director in consultation with others. The SoD enables the LEP Director to make decisions in certain circumstances as permitted by law and in accordance with each local authority’s constitution.

Accountability and Assurance Framework

The LEP’s Accountability and Assurance Framework sets out the key practices and standards of the LEP in managing growth within the Marches area. It is a comprehensive document which is reviewed annually to ensure it is compliant with the Government’s National Assurance Framework for LEPs.

Please click here to see our joint assurance statement ahead of our Annual Conversation.

Please click on the links below containing assurance statements ahead of our Annual Performance Review:

Policies and Procedures

The Marches LEP is committed to ensuring we have effective and robust corporate governance arrangements in place helping to fulfil our role in driving local economic growth across the region.

Please find below the following:

 

The Marches LEP is not subject to the Freedom of Information Act 2000, however some of its partner organisations are, and, where applicable, we will work with partners to ensure enquiries are dealt with in line with relevant legislation.

In compliance with the Gifts and Hospitality Policy, the Marches LEP Gifts and Hospitality Register can be found here.

Publication of meeting papers and agendas

The Marches LEP Board is the ultimate decision-making authority. In relation to the publication of meeting papers and agendas it is our commitment that for the LEP Board and any sub-board (involving decisions/recommendations related to public money) it will ensure:

  • Agendas and papers will be published 5 clear working days before the meeting takes place;

  • Minutes will be published within 10 clear working days of the meeting taking place.

  • Any declaration of interests made at the meeting are included within the minutes. A new declaration of interest will be updated on the   relevant members register of interest form (adopted for all of our governance structures).

Where deemed appropriate the Marches LEP may exclude papers from the public domain where grounds exist under The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 and in particular under Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972. Where papers are excluded from publication, a cover report setting out the decision(s) to be taken and the grounds for exemption will be published, and a private paper will be circulated to the Board.

Handling of Confidential and Exempt Information

The Marches LEP complies with The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 regarding confidential information.

Confidential information means information given to the Council by a Government Department on terms which forbid its public disclosure or information which cannot be publicly disclosed by Court Order and as fully defined in Section 100A(3) of the Local Government Act 1972.

The process adopted for the handling of information is as follows:

  • Documents shall be accessed against the established criteria and must be considered to match the criteria in order to be deemed confidential.
  • In the event a document is assessed as being confidential it shall be marked as such listing the appropriate Local Government Act 1972 exemption.
  • The reason for exemption shall be published on the LEP website within the relevant agenda papers section

Financial Audit and Scrutiny Information

As the LEP was not a legal entity, there was no requirement for the Marches LEP to produce its own set of accounts. However, it was been agreed that accounts be prepared in order to be fully transparent about how funding is being committed and spent.

Financial information can be found in the Annual Report, published in 2019. The 2018/2019 LEP accounts can be found here and previous statements of accounts can be found in our downloads section under Transparency.

The LEP has regular audits undertaken on their processes, procedures and systems, ensuring effective management of public funds. The latest audit report can be found here.

The LEP Chair and CEO from April 2019 will attend the three local authority Scrutiny Committees at least once a year to report on LEP activities and performance . The  LEP Chair and CEO attended the Scrutiny Panels of Shropshire Council (5 Sept 2019) and Herefordshire Council (22 Oct 2019) and a date is being planned to attend a Scrutiny Committee at Telford and Wrekin Council in early 2020 .

Provided in the below links are the reports that were submitted by the LEP in advance to the scrutiny committees plus the minutes of those meetings.

  1. Shropshire Council  – Report
  2. Herefordshire Council – Minutes

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