CITY DEVELOPMENT COMPANY - EPI/09/058
- Meeting of Enterprise, Strategic Planning and Infrastructure Committee, Thursday, 26th November, 2009 2.00 pm (Item 4.)
With reference to article 11 of the minute of the meeting of the former Policy and Strategy Committee of 9 June, 2009, the Committee had before it a report by the Director of Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure, which provided an update on progress towards the establishment of an Aberdeen City Development Company (CDC).
A detailed overview of the economic context for Aberdeen was provided in which it was explained that the City Development Company would seek to remedy pockets of “market failure” within the City region, to contribute to the sustainable “macro” economic future of the area, and to facilitate with partners the capturing of value for targeted beneficiaries, within a charitable/regeneration role.
The high level proposed principles of the CDC were set out and it was advised that these principles would be reflected within its proposed Articles of Association (as summarised in the report). The Articles of Association would be progressed for final approval by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) and City Solicitor in due course. The role, benefits and aims of the CDC were also outlined. The CDC was a mechanism to allow local authorities to use their assets to realise long-term investment from the private sector for regeneration projects.
With regard to the transferring of assets from the Council to the CDC, it was advised that, at present, Brodies had prepared a draft Heads of Terms which laid out the parameters upon which the Council and the CDC would transfer defined assets for the company project purposes. The Heads clearly outlined that the company should undertake the promotion and development of assets in terms of its charitable purposes and related objectives only, and in accordance with a business plan agreed between the Council and the company. Details of the relationship between the company and other initiatives and programmes being supported by the Council at this time was provided.
In terms of partnership arrangements, the Council had been advised that, at the moment, the founding members of the CDC could consist of Aberdeen City Council and Scottish Enterprise. The intended inclusion of ACSEF as a founding member was not possible while that body lacked “legal entity” status. There were two options for inclusion of ACSEF, whereby individual ACSEF Directors could become admitted Members conferred by the two founding members, or ACSEF became a legal entity prior to the incorporate of the City Development Company. It was anticipated that ACSEF would hold a Board Meeting in November 2009 at which this matter could be discussed. The Director of Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure was progressing discussions with the Scottish Enterprise regarding their membership.
In relation to the CDC Board structure, it was advised that the Board would be separate from the Council and would consist of a maximum of twelve Directors. Of those the Council would be entitled to appoint a maximum of four positions. The Convener of the Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure Committee and the Director of Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure Service were requested to nominate private sector representatives to sit as a Chairperson, and as remaining Directors of Aberdeen City Development Company Board, following discussion with founding partners.
The CDC project was progressing well against its anticipated milestones and targets. The next steps in the critical path included the acquisition of consultancy support towards the development of the Business Plan and the submission of an application to the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator for Charitable Status.
The Committee resolved:-
(i) to note the progress to date in the development of the City Development Company partnership options;
(ii) to authorise the City Solicitor to execute the Articles of Association as summarised at section 6.13 of the report, and submit the same to the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator as part of the City Development Company’s application for charitable status;
(iii) to authorise officers to utilise the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) Multi-Disciplinary Consultancy Framework Agreement to obtain external business and financial planning consultancy support, subject to the outcome of an appropriate due diligence of the procurement method and contractual terms and conditions by the City Solicitor;
(iv) to authorise the Convener of the Enterprise, Planning & Infrastructure Committee, jointly with the Director of Enterprise, Planning & Infrastructure Service, to appoint the Chairperson and private sector representatives following discussion with the founding partners;
(v) in light of the previous Committee instruction, to approve the proposed process of establishment of a City Development Company Project Board, and that the composition of the Board be four elected members (three administration members and one opposition member) as Directors; and
(vi) to request officers to recirculate to Councillor Crockett the Mackay ConsultantseEconomic report for August 2009.