Calderdale Council has prepared a plan of action for possible changes arising from the result of the EU referendum.
The outcome of the referendum has meant that the UK is now entering a period of uncertainty, which has a knock on effect on local councils and the services they provide. To ensure that Calderdale is prepared for any changes resulting from the referendum, the Council has put together an EU action plan detailing short term actions and indications of longer term plans. A cross-party working group will oversee this action plan.
The decision to leave the EU will have major implications on many UK organisations; for Calderdale Council the impacts are likely to be mainly financial, as there is uncertainty over levels of government support following the referendum result. However, the decision could also impact of a number of Council services, and the agreed action plan aims to provide initial responses for areas identified as having the potential to be affected.
The actions plan is split into seven different themes:
· Political voice and leadership – it’s important that the Local Government has a big part to play in the Government’s planning and negotiations. Through local and national discussions Calderdale Council will ensure it has a strong voice to represent local residents and businesses.
· Community relationships – in some areas of the country, the referendum result has had an impact on community cohesion, and it’s important that the Council deals swiftly with any signs of tension locally. There may also be a need for the Council to support non-UK residents who may be directly affected by an EU exit.
· Support for businesses and key institutions – although the impact of the EU exit on businesses is still unclear, the Council would ensure that advice and support is available for businesses if needed.
· Investment and employment – the Council wants to make sure that planned investment in the borough is protected, so will monitor any impact on plans relevant to Calderdale and look for alternative sources of investment funding if necessary.
· Promoting Calderdale – promoting the borough as an international tourist destination is a major ambition for the Council. The existing tourism strategy will be revised to develop ‘staycation’ opportunities and build on the profile of Calderdale during this period of change.
· Internal impact – the short term impact of the referendum is uncertainty and therefore instability on financial markets. The Council will monitor these changes and re-evaluate financial plans if necessary.
· Communication and Information – the Council will ensure that any changes or issues arising as a result of exit negotiations will be communicated effectively.
These themes form an initial action plan, which will be updated regularly as new information becomes available.
The Leader of Calderdale Council, Cllr Tim Swift, said:
“The result of the EU referendum has had a knock on effect on a number of sectors and organisations, and although the full impact of the decision is yet to be felt, it’s important that Calderdale Council is prepared for eventualities arising from the EU exit.
“This action plan will allow us to act appropriately to do the best for the borough, and provide reassurance through any changes that take place.”