Agenda item

Shared Prosperity Fund


The Leader presented the report to Cabinet colleagues. 


In April 2022 the UK Government published details of the new £2.6bn Shared Prosperity Fund which sought to support the Government’s Levelling Up objectives, these were:


§  Boost productivity, pay, jobs and living standards by growing the private sector, especially in places where they were lagging,

§  Spread opportunities and improve public services, especially in places where they were weakest,

§  Restore a sense of community, local pride and belonging, especially in places where they had been lost, and

§  Empower local leaders and communities, especially in those places lacking local agency.


In order to do this the Shared Prosperity Fund had three investment priorities:

§  Communities and Place

§  Supporting Local Business; and

§  People and Skills


There was also a fund called Multiply, which sought to improve adult numeracy skills.


The primary goal of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund was to build pride in place and increase life chances across the UK. The fund was intended to align with, and complement the Levelling Up Fund, for which Newport’s round 2 proposals to develop a National Technology Institute in the heart of our City were approved for submission by Cabinet in June.


The Shared Prosperity Funding was allocated to places across the UK on a needs basis and the 10 Local Authorities in the Cardiff Capital Region received a combined conditional allocation of over £230m and just over £48m for Multiply.  Newport was expected to receive just over £27m for core spend and a further £5.6m for Multiply over the next three years.


In order to draw down this funding, all local authorities within the Cardiff Capital Region were required to develop one regional investment plan for the whole region. This investment plan would set the high-level framework of interventions which would be developed and delivered at the local level. 


The Leader stressed that the development of the Regional Investment Plan was the beginning of the Shared Prosperity Fund process. It was a strategic plan which identified the overarching interventions that related to the three investment priorities of the Fund across the region. Not all regional interventions would be relevant to Newport, but this overarching strategy enabled us to start understanding what our local priorities were and develop a local delivery plan, in partnership with our communities and stakeholders.


The regional investment plan would need to be submitted to UK Government by 1 August.  As part of this process there was a need to appoint one local authority to assume the role of the ‘Lead Local Authority’ for administration purposes and it was proposed that Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council performed this role.


There was still much work to do in terms of some of the governance that sat alongside the administration of the funding, and this would be overseen by the Head of Law and Standards.  What is clear was that Newport was set to benefit from significant funding for our communities, for our businesses and to ensure that our residents had the skills they need to prosper.  Meaningful and inclusive engagement with our residents and communities would commence soon, to make sure we know what matters most to them.  It was important that we as a Cabinet know what the priorities of our residents were and that we develop a Local Delivery Plan that supported those priorities.


This report marked the first step to securing the funding that Newport deserved.


Comments of Cabinet Members:


§  Councillor Batrouni considered that Welsh should be fairly funded by Government and that a pragmatic approach be taken, as well as working together with all political groups to ensure positive outcome for Newport.  An offer of £1.1Bn from UK Government should be provided as set out by WG



That Cabinet:

1.      Endorsed Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council (RCT) as the Lead Local Authority for the UK SPF for the Cardiff Capital Region and submit the Regional Investment Plan by 1 August 2022.

2.      Delegate powers to the Head of Law and Standards to agree the legal agreements associated with the UKSPF with the Lead Local Authority on behalf of Newport City Council.

Supporting documents: