Decision Maker: Cabinet
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: Yes
Is subject to call in?: Yes
Cabinet considered the recommendations from the Member Task and Finish Group on supporting rural businesses and:-
(1) Agreed, the following recommendations to be implemented within existing resources:
(a) Recommendation 1: Improve South Cambridgeshire District Council’s engagement with local businesses through:
(i) The development and implementation of a South Cambridgeshire business engagement plan;
(ii) Revamping and relaunching the Council’s business webpages; and
(iii) Developing a South Cambridgeshire District Council ‘business visit’ offer.
(b) Recommendation 3: Support local business through the provision of business support workshops.
(c) Recommendation 4: Support and encourage Connecting Cambridgeshire in their work to improve broadband and mobile phone coverage in South Cambridgeshire.
(d) Recommendation 5 (b): The development of Neighbourhood Planning guidance on employment land and premises and Recommendation 5 (c): The provision of a workshop and guidance for councillors and officers on the need/scope for employment land in and on the edge of villages and the use of the flexibility allowed for in planning policy.
(e) Recommendation 6: Ask the Planning and Portfolio holders to implement the following actions - Recommendation 6 (a) Ensure that the affordable housing needs of rural business employees (and potential employees) and the resulting risks to business growth are recognised and addressed in the development of South Cambridgeshire District Council housing and planning policies. To include:-
(i) The Greater Cambridge Housing Strategy
(ii) The Greater Cambridge Local Plan including Rural Exception Sites
(iii) Planning SPDs; and
Recommendation 6 (b): Consider how the Council’s affordable housing initiatives and joint ventures with partners could potentially help to deliver homes for key employees, for example, through community-led development, modular housing, build to rent schemes and the review of older people’s housing accommodation.
(f) Recommendation 7: Request that the Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership consider rural business crime as part of their Strategic Assessment process.
(g) Recommendation 8: Monitor progress on Brexit and engage with and influence Government directly and through the Combined Authority and LEP on the opportunities for and impacts of Brexit on South Cambridgeshire businesses. Review work at the end of 2018 with a view to preparing for outcomes of Brexit.
(2) Agreed the following recommendations in principle, subject to further work to develop more detailed proposals and resource requirements:
(a) Recommendation 2 (a): The provision of a resource pack, seed funding and research to support the development of business networks within and across South Cambridgeshire’s villages and Recommendation 2 (b) Facilitating the development of local business apps.
(b) Recommendation 5 – Ensure that officers, councillors, communities and businesses have the sufficient information available to them to make informed decisions on employment sites and premises through:
(i) Recommendation 5 (a): Ensuring that the evidence collected to underpin the Economic Development Strategy and Local Plan includes analysis of the demand and supply of business premises within individual areas and across the district and addresses the availability and potential of agricultural premises.
(ii) Recommendation 5 (d): The development of a South Cambridgeshire property information/inward investment offer.
(c) Recommendation 6(c): Review of current processes for developing and varying s106 and s278 agreements for housing development with the aim of speeding up the implementation of planning permissions.
(3) Agreed that Cabinet reviews progress against the agreed recommendations in 6 months.
Publication date: 12/02/2018
Date of decision: 07/02/2018
Decided at meeting: 07/02/2018 - Cabinet
Effective from: 20/02/2018