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Waverley Borough Council Committee System - Committee Document

Meeting of the Executive held on 07/02/2006
SPONSORED ORGANISATION SCHEME – APPLICATIONS FOR REVENUE FUNDING 2006/07



Summary & Purpose
The purpose of this report is to consider the applications from the Sponsored Organisations for revenue funding in 2006/07.

The report details the assessment of applications against the approved Sponsored Organisation Scheme criteria and provides recommendations for funding.

APPENDIX C
WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL

EXECUTIVE – 7TH FEBRUARY 2006
___________________________________________________________________
Title:

SPONSORED ORGANISATION SCHEME – APPLICATIONS FOR REVENUE FUNDING 2006/07
[Wards Affected: All]
___________________________________________________________________
Summary and purpose:

The purpose of this report is to consider the applications from the Sponsored Organisations for revenue funding in 2006/07.

The report details the assessment of applications against the approved Sponsored Organisation Scheme criteria and provides recommendations for funding.
___________________________________________________________________
Environmental implications:

Many of the Sponsored Organisations contribute towards improving the environment in which Waverley’s residents live.

Social / community implications:

The organisations that Waverley supports under the Sponsored Organisations Scheme provide valuable services to the community which benefit a large number of Waverley’s residents. Waverley’s contribution to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel helps support organisations specifically in the social and welfare area.

E-Government implications:

There are no direct E-Government implications arising from this report. Sponsored Organisation Scheme application forms and guidance notes are available electronically by email and on the Council’s website.

Resource and legal implications:

The total value of the funding awarded to Sponsored Organisations in the current financial year (2005/06) was 554,943. In addition, a contribution of 49,455 was made towards the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel (WVGP) for social welfare organisations, some of which were previously funded from the Sponsored Organisations Scheme.

The total value of funding requested from Sponsored Organisations meeting the scheme’s criteria for 2006/07 is 679,438. A table detailing the grants requested by each organisation together with the grants approved over the last two years is attached at Annexe 1.

At its meeting in October 2005, the Executive agreed to continue to contribute to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel in 2006/07 on the same basis as in 2005/06. The Executive also agreed that the overall funding for the SOS and the WVGP be increased in line with inflation, but that this increase be considered alongside other demands on the Council’s finances during the budget process. These pressures were presented to Members at the Finance Seminar in October and were considered further at meetings of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees in November, and the Executive in early December.

Given these pressures and the decision to open the 2006-07 SOS round to new organisations, Members will need to decide whether the Council will be able to increase the SOS pot and/or the contribution to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel (WVGP) in the 2006/07 Budget. Currently Officers in this report have not identified any increases in grant for individual SOS organisations but have proposed funding for two new organisations. The total SOS grant recommendations for 2006/07 are 557,943, an increase of 3,000 over the 2005/06 budget. It is also recommended that the contribution to the WVGP in 2006/07 remains at the current year’s level of 49,455. Any increase in funding will need to be included in the budget proposals being considered by the Executive on 7th February.

Background

1. The principal aim of the Sponsored Organisation Scheme is to ‘provide financial support for the on-going revenue costs of voluntary and charitable organisations that are delivering high priority services for the benefit of Waverley residents in partnership with the Council’.

2. In October 2005, the Executive approved the grant eligibility, criteria and timetable for 2006/07. These are detailed in the application guidance at Annexe 2. Members gave particular consideration to the inclusion of Social/Welfare organisations, the treatment of general financial reserves and the degree to which organisations contribute towards Waverley’s Corporate Plan objectives.

3. At the October 2005 meeting, the Executive also agreed that:

o The Sponsored Organisation Scheme would be open to new organisations to apply for funding in 2006/07. o The Council should continue to contribute to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel in 2006/07 on the same basis as in 2005/06.

o A funding increase in-line with inflation is proposed, but that such an increase will be assessed alongside other demands on Council finances during the budget process.

o The Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel take further steps to join the grant administration processes with the Guildford Partnership Scheme

APPLICATIONS

4. A total of 28 applications for revenue funding in 2006/07 have been received, 24 of which are from existing Sponsored Organisations and 4 are from new applicants. The four Citizens Advice Bureaux have submitted one joint application for 2006/07 rather than individual ones as in previous years.

5. In total, the funding requested by the organisations for 2006/07 is 690,938. The summary table detailing all the Sponsored Organisation Scheme applications is attached at Annexe 1. A summary description of each organisation is contained in Annexe 3. The Sponsored Organisation Scheme timetable is attached at Annexe 4.

Grant Criteria and Assessment of Applications

6. Each application has been assessed against the Sponsored Organisation Scheme grant eligibility and criteria by the relevant ‘link officer’ within each service area. In addition, Waverley’s accountants have undertaken a financial assessment of each organisation’s annual accounts. The link officers, as part of assessing the grant applications, have taken the results from these financial assessments, together with information about organisations reserves policy, into account.

7. Of the 4 new organisations applying for funding in 2006/07, officers consider that two do not meet the Council’s criteria, namely the Sayers Croft Environmental Education Trust (11,500) and the Volunteer Reading Help (Surrey)(8,860). Whilst recognising that these organisations provide a valuable community service, Waverley’s approved criteria does not cover the particular services for which grant is sought. The organisations have been advised accordingly.

8. The recommended grants are shown in the last column of the table at Annexe 1. Waverley’s service officers recognise the high level of community benefit that each organisation provides and this is reflected in the narrative in Annexe 3 and, if more money was available, it would be desirable to award increases in grant to many of these organisations. However, as the table in Annexe 1 shows, given the pressures on Waverley’s budget, as presented to the Executive in December, and the Council’s intention to admit new organisations to the Sponsored Organisations Scheme, it is not possible for officers to recommend an increase for any of the existing organisations or in the contribution to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel.

9. It is appreciated that making no allowance for inflation will be especially difficult for those organisations where there are salary costs, and Members may wish to consider this in agreeing the grant amounts, in particular for those organisations which are jointly funded by other local authorities where a legal agreement supports financial contributions.

10. In October, the Executive made an ‘in-principle’ commitment to sign a new Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) for the Surrey Hills AONB organisation, pending further consideration of the financial implications as part of the Sponsored Organisations Scheme. Members should be aware that if the Council is unable to provide an inflationary increase to the Surry Hills AONB organisation, then it will be unable to sign the MOA, which is a legal document committing the Council to additional funding. Also in October, the Executive agreed that future funding for the Citizens Advice Bureaux should have regard to increases in inflation.

11. Where officers are proposing a change, these are summarised in the tables below:

a) Recommended changes in grant

Grant Approved 2005/06
Grant Recommended 2006/07

Total
Decrease ( )

Surrey Law Centre
2,000
0
(2,000)
Rural Life Centre
4,000
3,000
(3,000)
TOTAL (5,000)
b) Recommended funding for new organisations
12. It is recommended that the Surrey Law Centre’s Sponsored Organisations Scheme grant is stopped in 2006-07. Whilst the service provided by the Centre is valuable, officers have had to considered this grant alongside the pressures on the SOS budget and the level of funding for other organisations providing community advice such as the CABx. Waverley’s funding is only a small proportion of the Law Centre’s overall revenue. In addition, it is recommended that the Rural Life Centre’s grant is reduced as it has been the Council’s policy for officers to work with the Centre and assist them with one-off grants which help attract income.

Other Financial Support From Waverley

13. In addition, a number of applicants have been offered other financial support from Waverley in 2005/06.

Organisation
Project
Grant
Awarded
Total
Project
Cost
Rural Life Centre3 Bay Building
1500
12796
Farnham Youth ProjectRegeneration Phase 1
21738
86950
Farnham MaltingsSouth Wing project
361000
2m +

Loan

Farnham MaltingsFundraising50,000 loan repayable over 5 years (25,000 of the 50,000 loan taken-up and paid in 2004/5
Rate Relief

14. In addition to the Sponsored Organisation Scheme grant in 2005/06, the following organisations also receive mandatory and discretionary rate relief as detailed below:

Organisation
Mandatory
Rate Relief
Discretionary
Rate Relief
Amount
Cost to Waverley (75% of Discretionary Rate Relief)
Age Concern Waverley
2532.00
633.00
3165.00
474.75
Age Concern Haslemere and District
4642.00
1160.50
5802.50
870.38
Age Concern Cranleigh and District
2903.36
725.36
3628.72
544.02
Brightwells Gostrey
1046.56
261.64
1308.20
196.23
Citizens Advice Bureau – Farnham
4473.20
1118.30
5591.50
838.73
Citizens Advice Bureau – Godalming
7764.80
1941.20
9706.00
1455.90
Citizens Advice Bureau – Haslemere and Cranleigh
5064.00
1266.00
6330.00
949.50
Cranleigh Arts Centre
3966.80
3966.80
Farnham Maltings
23463.20
23463.20
Godalming Museum Trust
5649.22
1412.30
7061.52
1059.22
Haslemere Educational
Museum
25995.20
6498.80
32494.00
4874.10
Haslemere Hall Trust
2970.88
2970.88
Milford and Villages Day Centre
4388.80
1097.20
5486.00
822.90
Rural Life Centre
(Old Kiln Museum Trust)
337.60
84.40
422.00
63.30
Farnham Youth Project
2664.82
666.21
3331.03
499.66
Total
97862.44
16864.91
114727.35
12648.69

Observations of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees

15. The Sponsored Organisation Scheme applications were considered by the Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 16th January 2006, the Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 17th January 2006, and by the Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 23rd January 2006. The comments from these Committees are shown below.

Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee

16. The Committee considered the applications within the remit of the Community Overview and Scrutiny Committee and, whilst understanding the difficult financial situations, highlighted that grants within the remit of the Committee should get inflationary increases. In particular, the Citizens Advice Bureaux which would be at a cost of 6,000.
the Sponsored Organisation Scheme applications within the Committee's remit, as detailed in Annexe 1 to the report, be noted and the observation as outlined above be passed to the Executive; and the proposal to contribute to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel in 2006/2007, at the same level as 2005/2006, 49,455.


Environment and Leisure Overview and Scrutiny Committee

17. Members were disappointed about the proposed decrease in funding for the Rural Life Centre and agreed to advise that funding be retained at the current level. Members felt it was a unique project which appealed to all age groups and that it would send a negative message to the organisation if funding was reduced.
the Sponsored Organisation Scheme applications within the Committee's remit, as detailed in Annexe 1 to the report, be noted and the observation about retaining funding at the current level for the Rural Life Centre as outlined above be passed to the Executive; and the proposal to contribute to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel in 2006/2007, at the same level as 2005/2006, 49,455.

Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee

18. The Committee recognised that there was only one application falling within their remit, namely the Surrey Law Centre. Members were informed by officers that, whilst the Council recognised the value of the Centre's services, there was a limited pot with requests significantly exceeding the amount available, including applications from 2 new organisations. The Law Centre's accounts indicated that Waverley's grant is 1% of their income, therefore suggesting that they are less dependent on Waverley funding than other organisations.
the officer recommendation not to provide a grant for the Surrey Law Centre in 2006/2007; and the proposal to contribute to the Waverley Voluntary Grants Panel in 2006/2007, at the same level as 2005/2006, 49,455.

Recommendation

It is recommended that the Executive:
Background Papers (DoF)

Sponsored Organisation Scheme application forms
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CONTACT OFFICERS:

Name: Graeme Clark Telephone: 01483 523236
Mike Horlock E-mail: grclark@waverley.gov.uk
mhorlock@waverley.gov.uk

comms/exec/2005-06/275