Cabinet Paper on Regulatory Services
A proposal to explore a regional service for Trading Standards, Licensing and Environmental Health was agreed at Full Council last week. These are important services as they support local businesses to understand their responsibilities whilst ensuring the public are protected. The approach demonstrates how the Council is working with other local authorities, and the Welsh Government, to ensure the quality and sustainability of services are safeguarded at a time when council funding continues to be cut by Central Government.
By adopting this model of working, we can make savings and create long term resilience by pooling resources to ensure an affordable and sustainable service. This will also allow us to retain our high performance level in health and consumer protection.
You can read WalesOnline’s report by clicking here.
City Growth Commission Report
Last week’s final City Growth Commission Report (Unleashing Metro Growth) argues that the UK economy needs successful cities in order to continue to grow and balance this growth. It also sets out the need for cities to have more say in the UK’s political economy and devolution of power to our major cities.
This is an important and radical report, which could have major implications for Wales. When it comes to creating jobs, building homes and reforming public services, their report is unambiguous – cities need greater power and greater funding!
The report recognises the new economic realities of our time. Cities, as centres of productivity, innovation and creativity, represent the UK’s great economic opportunity.
The work of the Commission draws attention to what it calls our ‘over-centralised political system’. This it concludes is stifling growth and the report sets out a fundamental and compelling case for change by devolving powers and responsibilities to cities.
As one of the UK’s Core Cities I am determined that Cardiff is at the forefront of this agenda because the Welsh capital is crucial to the success of the Welsh economy. However we also need to look at economic opportunities beyond Wales and are rightly identified by the City Growth Commission, along with Bristol, as one of 6 ‘power-house super city regions’ upon which the British economy will rely in the future.
These Western cities- which include Cardiff and Bristol – are among the most productive and creative in the UK, but are so far an under developed national economic asset. I am currently in discussions with Bristol and other partners to see how the Western cities can be given the freedom and investment needed to unleash growth in the UK economy and to get on with the job of creating wealth and prosperity.
Launch of Alert Logic
Last week I was invited to speak at the official opening of Alert Logic’s European Headquarters in the Cardiff Enterprise Zone.
Based in Houston, Texas, Alert Logic is one of the world’s leading cyber security companies, employing about 360 people worldwide and their new presence in Cardiff will create almost 130 highly skilled jobs in the city – in a rapidly growing global industry.
Cardiff was selected because of our readiness to establish the European HQ quickly along with our excellent transport links, close proximity to London our skilled local workforce, with many researching cyber security at our local universities.
The firm is keen to develop strong links with our universities and schools to foster young technology talent and I wish them every success in our city!