Experts in sectors including retail, micro business and tourism will soon be invited to help guide the Swansea Bay City Deal.
The search for unpaid specialist advisors representing a variety of fields was among a number of approvals at a meeting of the City Deal’s decision-making Joint Committee on Tuesday July 30.
Regional experts in digital innovation, skills, energy, manufacturing, young people, transport, local development, heavy industry and food and beverages will also be sought to advise City Deal leaders, when needed.
An advert will soon be placed, inviting expressions of interest.
A job description and salary for a new Swansea Bay City Deal independent programme director was also approved at Joint Committee, with recruitment due to start in coming weeks.
Other approvals include a revised Joint Committee Agreement that will now go to each regional council, the Welsh Government and the UK Government for sign-off. A revised agreement is needed because of a recent re-distribution of City Deal functions including legal and administration.
Cllr Rob Stewart, Joint Committee Chairman, said:
“The appointment of a new programme director and specialist advisors – as well as a revised Joint Committee Agreement – are requirements of two reviews into the City Deal, which were aimed at speeding up the investment programme’s delivery.
“We’re acting with speed to implement all recommendations arising from the reviews because we know how important the City Deal is for residents and businesses throughout the Swansea Bay City Region.
“These approvals follow the UK Government and Welsh Government agreeing to release the first tranche of City Deal funding, which is the start of a major investment in our region that will make a real difference to people’s job opportunities, aspirations and quality of life.
“The City Deal will also act as a catalyst for further investment that will hugely improve the Swansea Bay City Region’s economic well-being, helping close the gap with wealthier parts of the UK.”
Subject to finalising terms and conditions, the first £18 million of UK and Welsh Government funding is based on the approval of two projects – Yr Egin in Carmarthen, and the Swansea City and Waterfront Digital District. A further £18 million could also follow later this year.
The first phase of Canolfan S4C Yr Egin is now close to full occupation, and early construction work has started on the digital indoor arena feature of the Swansea project.
Due to be funded by the UK Government, the Welsh Government, the public sector and the private sector, the City Deal – estimated to be worth £1.8 billion and over 9,000 jobs – is being led by the four regional councils, the two regional health boards and the two regional universities.