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53rd CfIT Plenary Meeting - 31 January 2008

Agenda:

1. Chair's Introduction

2. Work Programme Discussion - CfIT (08) 01
Matt Coleman will update Commissioners on the current work programme.

3. Option Appraisal
Lynn Sloman will introduce Tom Cohen from Steer Davies Gleave, who will give a presentation detailing SDG's work with Buckinghamshire County Council on option generation and appraisal using multi-criteria analysis as an assessment tool.

4. Planning Bill - CfIT (08) 02
Andrew Murray, Head of Planning at DfT, will give a presentation updating Commissioners on the Planning Reform Bill.

Coffee

5. Better Use of the Road Network - CfIT (08) 03
Peter Hendy will lead discussion amongst Commissioners on the general scope of the proposed project. Steve Gooding, Director of Road Pricing at DfT, will join the discussion at 12pm to give the DfT perspective on the 'Deal with the Motorist'.

Lunch

The following papers are for information only:

6. Minutes of the Last Meeting - CfIT (08) 04

7. Media Report - CfIT (08) 05

8. Calendar of Events - CfIT (08) 06

9. CfIT Website - CfIT (08) 07

10. Expenditure - CfIT (08) 08

11. List of Academics on Framework - CfIT (08) 09

Minutes:

Present

Commissioners:
Peter Hendy (Chair)
David Leeder (Vice-Chair), Lynn Sloman (Vice-Chair), Neil Betteridge, Phil Davis, Gerry Doherty, Garrett Emmerson, Paul Godier, Helen Holland, Archie Robertson, Neil Scales, Andrew Sentance, Corinne Swain, Richard Turner.

Sir Trevor Chinn (Motorists' Forum Chair).

Other attendees:
Tom Cohen, Steer Davies Gleave, Andrew Murray (DfT), Steve Gooding (DfT), Andrew Scurry (DfT observer).

CfIT secretariat:
Matt Coleman, Neil Williams, Grant Allan, Brian Corbett, Luke Blair (Media Advisor).

Apologies for absence:
Apologies were received from Harry Bush, Iain Coucher, Carolyn Dwyer and Michael Roberts.

1. Chair's Introduction

Welcome to Matt Coleman and Phil Davis
The Chair welcomed Matt Coleman as the new Secretary of CfIT, who joins from the Concessionary Fares policy team at DfT. The Chair also welcomed Phil Davis who was attending his first plenary.

CfIT Budget
The Chair informed the Commission of changes made to the CfIT budget in the next financial year, as well as the loss of a position within the Secretariat. It was thought that these changes could be managed effectively.

May Plenary
Following a discussion on where to hold the May plenary, previously scheduled for Belfast, it was agreed to investigate the feasibility of holding the plenary in the Netherlands, with officials from the Northern Ireland Executive invited to attend a future plenary. The Netherlands have recently announced plans to introduce a national road-pricing scheme and Commissioners expressed strong interest in discussing these proposals with key officials. There are also a number of other developments in the Netherlands, including their use of taxis and their land use planning initiatives, which are relevant to current CfIT projects and which will be of interest to Commissioners.

Action: Secretariat to liaise with officials in the Netherlands.

Tender Frameworks
Grant Allan informed the Commission that the Academic Framework had been established and that the Consultancy Framework would be up-and-running shortly.

Network Rail
Commissioners discussed the National railway engineering works during the Christmas period. It was agreed to have another discussion on the subject with Iain Coucher present.

Action: The Chair to write to Iain Coucher regarding train services over holiday periods.

Active Traffic Management
Garrett Emmerson informed Commissioners that he had joined DfT's Active Traffic Management Group, advising the Department on increasing road capacity. Garrett said that there could potentially be a role for CfIT to conduct further research in this area.

2. Work Programme Discussion

Matt Coleman updated Commissioners on the progress of the current work programme, and informed them of the projects which have had to be re-profiled due to changes in the budget and staffing. Neil Betteridge offered DPTAC input in the ageing population project, and it was noted that Carolyn Dwyer had offered to chair the Streetscapes project the previous evening.

3. Option Appraisal

Lynn Sloman introduced the DfT's New Approach to Appraisal and updated the Commission on progress so far. Lynn introduced Tom Cohen from Steer Davies Gleave, who had worked with Buckinghamshire County Council and Friends of the Earth on appraising the options for widening the A418 near to Aylesbury. The team used Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis to appraise various options and determine which would have the best outcome under differing circumstances. It was agreed that results are potentially highly sensitive to the evaluation factors and weightings chosen, and that these sensitivities need to be clear. Equally, transparency about such choices is one of the benefits of this approach.

Action: Secretariat to circulate report on A418.

4. Planning Bill

Corinne Swain presented a paper setting out CfIT's thinking on the Planning Bill, which is being led by Communities and Local Government, and its implications for transport. Andrew Murray, Head of Planning at DfT, then provided a presentation detailing the Department's view of the Bill. A discussion followed on the Planning Bill and the proposed Community Infrastructure Levy, and it was agreed to invite officials from Communities and Local Government to a forthcoming plenary.

Action: Secretariat to seek clarification on Community Infrastructure Levy.

Action: Secretariat to invite CLG officials to March plenary.

5. Better Use of the Road Network

Sir Trevor Chinn provided an outline of the Motorists' Forum views on the proposed project on how to reduce congestion, and introduced Steve Gooding from the DfT, who laid out the Department's thinking on the issue. It was agreed that the project joint-Chairs should meet and determine the scope of the project and the composition of the working group.

Action: Secretariat to arrange meeting between joint-Chairs.

Action: Secretariat to circulate all presentation slides.

Date of Next Meeting

The next Plenary meeting would be held at 9:30am in London on Wednesday 19 March 2008.