The SE LEP Assurance Framework is the governance required by Government that details how we will manage the funding we have been given. The purpose of the Assurance Framework is to set out the systems and processes in place that are necessary to manage the delegated funding from Central Government Budgets effectively. It is intended to provide Government and Partners with the assurance that decisions over funding are proper, transparent and deliver value for money. This Assurance Framework reflects the expectations of Government as set out in the National Assurance Framework published October 2016.
The South East LEP Strategic Board have been asked to agree a revised version of the SELEP Assurance Framework by 1st February 2017. For further details please see the three documents on the right of this page. Context is provided in the ‘ways of working’ item discussed at the SELEP Strategic Board Meeting 9th December 2016.
In July 2014, the SE LEP Growth Deal was announced by Government. This committed £442m to the South East LEP area, together with a number of new freedoms, flexibilities and responsibilities. An additional £46.1m was committed in January 2015 through the Growth Deal process.
In December 2014, guidance was produced on the LEP Assurance Framework, detailing how LEPs - through their Growth Deals - would “develop a single assurance framework covering all Government funding flowing through LEPs, to ensure LEPs have robust value for money processes in place”. [LEP Assurance Framework, HMG, December 2014]
The document made clear that the purpose of the framework is to “support the developing confidence in delegating funding from central budgets and programmes via a single pot mechanism”.
The SE LEP Assurance Framework sets out how growth schemes funded through the LEP are selected and delivered to ensure maximum impact and best value for money. It achieves this by applying the federal model of operation of SE LEP to support local management and the proven track records of member councils for transport, economic development and wider programme delivery.
Much of the SE LEP Assurance Framework is not new. It combines the agreements made at the SE LEP Board meeting in December 2014 (in response to the Lucas Delivery Review) with the published SE LEP Governance and Terms of Reference document and the previously approved SE LEP Transport Assurance Framework. These are supplemented by information in response to the published guidance.
The Assurance Framework will be supported by Service Level Agreements (SLAs) with local county/unitary councils to devolve project funding and accountability. These agreements will be agreed individually between the Accountable Body and the individual councils.