How We Award Funding

SELEP Overview

The SELEP is a partnership between business and public sector.

SELEP is committed to ensuring decisions are made in an open and transparent way. The SELEP Assurance Framework sets out robust systems and processes to manage the funding devolved through the SELEP.

Allocation and Award of Local Growth Fund

There are three key stages to the award of Local Growth Funds: - The prioritisation of projects to be included in a SELEP Growth Deal bid; - The Growth Deal allocation by Central Government; and - The Award of funding by SELEP Accountability Board

All decisions to award funding are taken by the SELEP Accountability Board.

Prioritisation of projects to be included in a SELEP Growth Deal bid in Government

In response to a Growth Deal funding opportunity, Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) are required to submit Growth Deal bids to Central Government. The bid document comprises a list of prioritised projects from across the four Federated Areas of SELEP. To determine the list of projects to be included within a Growth Deal bid to Central Government, prioritisation of projects is completed following an assessment against criteria agreed by the overarching SELEP Strategic Board.

Prior to consideration of bids for Local Growth Funds by the Strategic Board, the project bids need to have been considered and prioritised at a local level by the Federated Boards. Each Federated Board is required to comply with the prioritisation system, agreed by the Strategic Board, in order to ensure a consistent approach is followed by each area.

To support the prioritisation of projects for funding opportunities, scheme promoters are required to develop a Strategic Outline Business Case, using the appropriate SELEP’s Business Case template. The information provided in the Strategic Outline Business Case is then used to support the prioritisation of projects.

The prioritisation of Local Growth Fund projects includes an assessment of projects based on Her Majesty’s Treasury’s The Green Book: Appraisal and Evaluation in Central Government (The Green Book), and related Central Government departmental guidance. Further details of the assessment approach can be found in resources, Prioritisation of Local Growth Fund Projects.

Once funding priorities have been determined by the Federated Board, these projects are then prioritised across SELEP, with support from SELEP’s Independent Technical Evaluator. The final prioritised list of projects to be included in a Growth Deal submission to Government is agreed by SELEP Strategic Board.

Growth Deal Allocation by Government

Based on the strength of the Growth Deal submission to Government, the SELEP is awarded a Growth Deal. This Growth Deal sets out a Local Growth Fund allocation to SELEP and the outcomes which SELEP agrees to deliver through this investment.

To date, SELEP has been awarded three Growth Deals and has secured a total of £590m Local Growth Fund investment. Detail of the projects which have been allocated Local Growth Fund, can be found here.

Approval of Local Growth Funding Allocations to Growth Deal Projects

For all Growth Deal projects, the allocation of any SELEP funding is subject to approval by the SELEP Accountability Board. All funding decisions made by the Accountability Board to approve funding for a specific Growth Deal project must be supported with a robust Business Case which has been independently assessed. This independent and impartial advice on the merits of the Business Case for each project is provided by a SELEP Independent Technical Evaluator.

For the SELEP Accountability Board to approve the award of Local Growth Funds to a project, the project must have a robust Business Case which:

  • Provides a clear rationale for investment in the project linked with the strategic objectives identified in the SELEP Strategic Economic Plan;
  • Clearly defines the expected outputs and anticipated outcome;
  • Considers deliverability and risks appropriately, along with appropriate mitigating controls and actions; and
  • Provides robust evidence of a Benefit Cost Ratio of at least 2:1 or comply with one of the two exemptions listed in the SELEP Assurance Framework (pg. 24 and 25).

Further information about SELEP’s Independent Technical Review process can be found in the resources, SELEP Independent Technical Evaluator Process.

Once a project has been approved, the Accountability Board oversee the delivery of the overall programme of investment and seek to ensure value for money across each of the projects.

Changes to Projects

Following the approval of the Business Case, if there are further changes to the project, for example changes to project cost or the expected benefits to be achieved through project delivery, a further decision will be sought from SELEP Accountability Board. Where changes to a project’s Value for Money are expected a further review of the Business Case may be required to support the recommendations made to SELEP Accountability Board. These projects will follow SELEPs Change Request process and scheme promoters are required to complete a Change Request Template.