A “substantive proposition” for a Pembroke Dock marine project – with potential to create 1,500 jobs – could come before council before Christmas.
Members of the corporate overview and scrutiny committee were told that work on a draft business case for the project which forms part of the Swansea Bay City Deal is progressing, with the final “hurdles” expected to be dealt with in the coming weeks.
Cllr Michael Williams asked what the current situation with the deal was after recent events “raised concerns about its deliverability.”
Director of communities Steven Jones said that a review following independent audits had been carried out and would result in changes to the joint working agreement being brought to cabinet next month.
He added that the first tranche of money had now been released and the second tranche projects, including the Pembroke Dock scheme, were being asked to come forward.
“If we’re able to get through these hoops, these hurdles, over the next few weeks and months we’ll be in a position to bring a report to council, perhaps before December, with recommendation to support a final submission of the Pembroke Dock marine project,” he said at Thursday’s meeting (September 12).
Pembroke Dock Marine aims to ‘create a world class marine energy and engineering fabrication, test and deployment hub for renewable energy’.
Cabinet member for finance Cllr Bob Kilmister added that council leader Cllr David Simpson had put in a significant amount of work into overcoming issues with the scheme and his work “will come to fruition.”
He reminded the committee that all decisions on the project and any investment would be decided at full council.
“We’re anticipated that this may now happen before Christmas and there may be a substantive proposition for this council to consider,” he added.
There will be additional costs if the project goes ahead, Cllr Kilmister said, along with the previously agreed £50,000 a year paid in the past two years, in response to a question about funding from Cllr Williams.