To receive updates from the Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor.
Metro Mayor S Rotheram, provided Members with an update on his activities and key developments since the last meeting of the LCR Combined Authority.
The Metro Mayor reported that Leonora Brace had sadly passed away and both her and her husband were regular attendees at public meetings. Given their commitment to local democracy he felt it only appropriate that sincere condolences should be passed on to Mr Brace.
The Metro Mayor congratulated the former Chief Executive, Frank Rogers, who had been recognised in the New Year’s honours and had received a CBE for his many years of service to local government. He also congratulated Councillor Rob Polhill, the former leader of Halton Council, who was also recognised for his services to Government and had received an OBE.
The Metro Mayor noted that the G7 Foreign Ministers had held their conference in Liverpool, for their final conference during the UK’s where Mayor Anderson and he had been invited to attend one of the events. He explained that the summit had provided a welcome economic boost to the City Region.
The Metro Mayor reported that a second round of the Community Environment Fund had also been announced. The Fund had generated significant interest from a range of groups. The first funding round had been successful and the projects who had received funding were being to come to fruition across the City Region.
The Metro Mayor explained that he had also visited the Speke Education and Training Centre in December as they had benefitted from £750,000 in funding from the Combined Authority. This Funding had allowed the Centre to be disability access friendly, with the installation of a new lift and would allow the Centre to continue to support more residents into work.
The Metro Mayor informed the Combined Authority that he had recently joined the Daily Mirror and the Mayor of Greater Manchester to meet some of the last surviving nuclear test veterans in the country. He explained how it had been harrowing to hear their experiences and the medical conditions they were still living with today, as a result of their exposure to atomic fallout. He expressed his concern that for far too the nuclear test veterans had not been shown the respect they deserved, and both Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester Mayor and himself were renewing calls for the Prime Minister to meet with the veterans to hear their story.
The Metro Mayor explained that two weeks ago he and Andy Burnham, Greater Manchester Mayor, launched the Hillsborough Law Now campaign, which was seeking to introduce a law to prevent miscarriages of justice.
He explained that the proposed Hillsborough Law would see changes to the justice system to prevent others going through what the families had experienced which included:
· A Duty of Candour, which would force public authorities to be proactively honest when events went wrong.
· Equal Access - by providing people with appropriate legal funding.
· A Public Advocate who could guide victims’ families through the legal system.
In conclusion, the Metro Mayor explained that he was looking forward to visiting some of the transformational projects across the City Region this year and advised that it had been exciting to see all the hard work and fruition come together on:
· Headbolt Lane in Kirkby, Shakespeare North in Prescot and the wider borough of culture programme;
· Glass Futures in St Helens;
· The station quarter in Runcorn;
· Bramley Moore in Liverpool;
· The Marine Lake in Sefton;
· Eureka in the Wirral.