Social Value Procurement Policy set to benefit Torbay residents and communities

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(Last Updated On: June 10, 2021)

Members of Torbay Council’s Cabinet are set to approve a new Social Value Procurement Policy that will provide additional local social and economic benefits for Torbay residents.

In a report being considered at the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday 15 June, Members are being asked to approve the policy that will maximise the opportunity Social Value has to contribute to the delivery of the councils Community and Corporate plan and Community Wealth Building approach. The policy will set a requirement that a minimum of 10% of the overall evaluation score is allocated to all procurements over the value of £50,000.

Social Value asks the question: ‘If £1 is spent on the delivery of services, can that same £1 be used to also produce a wider benefit to the community?’. This involves looking beyond the price of each individual contract and looking also at the collective benefit to the community.

For example, in a contract for building works, bidders might be asked to show how they would promote ‘local skills and employment’ and as part of their bid make a commitment to recruiting at least 10% of new workers in the next 12-months from people who have been in long term unemployment. This commitment is of no additional cost to the council but is of wider benefit to the community.

Through Social Value and Impact, the council can ensure that all procurement activity contributes to making tangible differences to the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of Torbay.

In 2019, Torbay Council spent approximately £57 million via its procurement activity. With a planned regeneration programme of an estimated £676 million in the pipeline. Social value will play a huge role throughout the construction process through the development of Employment and Skills Plans (ESP). Under the proposals, each contractor will be required to support, employ, and train local people directly within the construction trade and wider supply chain.

Councillor Darren Cowell, Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Finance, said; “As a Co-operative Council we are committed to the implementation and enhancement of the Innovation Network principles. This includes the principle of maximising Social Value and working to ensure there are better tools to provide better local social and economic outcomes for Torbay and our network partners.”

Councillor Swithin Long, Cabinet Member of Economic Regeneration, Tourism and Housing, said: “As a council we want to put Social Value at the heart of what we do to ensure that Torbay and its residents thrive. By improving how we incorporate Social Value into our commissioning and procurement process we can be sure we can make a tangible difference to people in the community, to service delivery and our spending outcomes as a whole.”

Read more about this report and other items being discussed at Cabinet at 5.30pm on Tuesday 15 June on the council’s website.

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