Orkney’s Community Planning Partnership has agreed to take small business concerns about public sector procurement to the Scottish Government.
The strategic team from across public services in the county met recently to discuss this issue and to agree an Economic Strategy for 2012-16.
Chair of the Partnership, OIC Convener Stephen Hagan, said: “The Council and partners often hear of concerns from local businesses that the rules around public sector procurement often put them at a disadvantage in applying for tenders.
“As the Chair of the OCPP, it concerns me that these rules contradict our values as a partnership in promoting survival and maintaining fragile communities as viable places to live and work.
“We have asked the Scottish Government support officer for our Partnership here in Orkney to take these concerns back to Edinburgh.
“Meantime we will pursue this through the Partnership’s Strategic Economic Forum at its next meeting”.
The newly-agreed Economic Strategy sets out five priorities for 2012-16 , highlighting a number of ambitions for each theme and an action plan for achieving them:
1. Growing Orkney’s Businesses;
2. Connections and Global Markets;
3. Developing Innovation, Skills & Learning;
4. Community Development, Leadership and Entrepreneurship; and
5. Towards a Low Carbon Economy.
The Strategy highlights the significant impact which Orkney’s developing marine renewables industry is expected to have in the years to come, and the need to balance this with continued championing of Orkney’s existing major industries, notably farming and fishing.
The crucial importance of connectivity – both transport and communications – to the future of all of Orkney’s businesses is also emphasised throughout.
The Strategy is available to view on the Orkney Community Planning Partnership website orkneycommunities.co.uk/COMMUNITYPLANNING/
The locations of four charging posts for the electric vehicle fleet were also agreed by the Partnership.
Funding for the charging posts was provided by the Scottish Government via Transport Scotland which is charged with encouraging the development and use of low carbon vehicle technology nationally. Transport Scotland is also committed to having electric vehicle charging infrastructure in place in Scottish cities by 2020.
The new posts in Orkney will be located in:
• Old Academy, Stromness
• St. Rognvalds House
• Braeburn Court Care Home, St. Margaret’s Hope
• Dounby School
Notes to Editors:
Direct link to the Partnership’s Economic Strategy: http://www.orkneycommunities.co.uk/COMMUNITYPLANNING/documents/MINUTES/Task%20force/Orkney%20Economic%20Strategy%202012-16%20_no%20action%20plan_.pdf