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Answers to Questions: Joint Authorities

by timpickstone on 21 July, 2020

At the latest full meeting of Bury Council, we asked questions to the Joint Authorities on GMSF, Stop and Search and Metrolink Revenue

Councillor Michael Powell – GMSF
Do the existing plans to proceed with the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework remain intact and if so, when will the timetable for next steps and further consultation with the public be confirmed? 

The plan will be the driver for securing the homes and jobs that Greater Manchester needs and will help the process of recovery and responding to the economic impacts caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The housing crisis hasn’t gone away and the need for new jobs is growing more important as the pandemic has already had a significant economic impact on businesses.

We have a statutory duty to provide a plan that meets the current and future needs of our residents and the Spatial Framework has and will continue to progress in line with national policy.

It is vital that we are prepared for the challenges that lay ahead and that we seize the opportunity to build back in a way that’s better and fairer for all. Our focus, as always, is on getting the right plan in place and a decision on the next stages of the Framework will hopefully be published shortlypage1image2444877920page1image2444878208

We now understand that the next draft of the GMSF will be due for consultation late summer / early Autumn. We’ve been given notice of a special Council meeting on 21 October 2020 to vote on the GMSF, so gives a pretty clear indication of the timetable.

Councillor Cristina Tegolo – Stop and Search
Could the Council’s Spokesperson on the GM Police and Crime Panel inform members how often Section 60 Stop and Search powers have been used in each of the last three years, and what proportion of these powers have been used on BAME members of the public? 

GMP rarely use Section 60 Stop and Search powers, particularly when compared to other similar Forces.

2019/20 (Home Office pilot) 

3 Section 60s authorised
0 searches under the first 2
9 searches conducted under the third – 3xBAME, 2xWhite and  4xno answer self-defined question

1 Section 60 authorised & 1 stop and search conducted – no answer provided by the person stopped/searched on how they self-identify

1 Section 60 authorised & 1 stop and search conducted – no answer provided by the person stopped/searched on how they self-identify 

Councillor Steve Wright – Metrolink Revenue
Could the Council’s spokesperson on the Transport for Greater Manchester Authority inform members what the expected loss in fare income has been for the Metrolink system through the pandemic, and how much of this has been covered through Government grants? 

During the lockdown, the significantly reduced levels of farebox revenues due to a fall in patronage of around 95% resulted in monthly deficits (after financing costs) of circa £5.3 million, compared to the budgeted break-even position.

Following discussions between GM Mayor Andy Burnham, Transport for Greater Manchester and Government, an initial tranche of funding totalling £11.6 million was granted by the Department for Transport, for the period to 8 June. This covered circa £4 million (around 73%) of the monthly deficit position.

On 23 May, the DfT announced a second, improved, tranche of financial support of £13.3 million for the period from 12 May to 3 August. This grant funding is subject to review and scrutiny by the DfT based on revenue losses and actual costs incurred. TfGM are required to submit 4 weekly returns to DfT with the actual revenue and cost breakdowns, which will then be used to adjust and pay the allocated funding accordingly.

Current analysis projects that, without any further government support, Metrolink can expect to experience a deficit of between £30 million and £40 million by the end of the current financial year.

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