12th Aug, 2020

Cash for Solihull community groups waiting to be claimed, with £360k on offer

John Carlon 31st Jul, 2020

CASH for community groups in Solihull is lying unclaimed, the council has said – with just a month left to make bids.

Nearly £360,000 is still available for community projects in eight of Solihull’s wards.

The funds come from levies on housing developers, aiming to improve communities aroud construction projects.

A spokeswoman for Solihull Council said: “We are urging community groups and organisations in eight of Solihull’s wards to submit bids. It is only a month until the deadline so it’s key that any groups who would like funding apply quickly. The deadline for bids is Tuesday September 1.”

The most money available is in Shirley East, where £70,000 is up for grabs.

Other pots on offer include £55,122 in Knowle; £49,403 in Silhill; £42,579 in Shirley South; £42,553 in Olton; £41,959 in Dorridge and Hockley Heath; £31,772 in St Alphege and £25,827 in Shirley West.

The council added: “This funding comes from the new Neighbourhood Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) that has been collected in 2019/20, plus £128,044 which has been ‘rolled over’ from previous years. CIL was introduced by the Government in 2010 as a more flexible way of addressing the demands of new development in the local area.

“The money is collected from new developments as part of the normal planning process. The funds are either placed into ‘ward pots’, which will now be open to ‘bids’ from local communities or distributed directly to the 13 parish and town councils in the borough via a formula.

“To be considered groups and organisations must be formally constituted; have a bank account with two unrelated signatories; at least two unrelated management committee members if they are an unincorporated organisation or a voluntary group and show good financial management procedures including records of income and expenditure.”

Councillor Alison Rolf, Cabinet Member for Stronger & Safer Communities, said: “I was delighted a few months ago when we realised the sum of CIL money we had and the positive impact it could have on the different areas of our borough. It’s not often that such a substantial sum of money is available for community groups and with only a month left to apply it’s vital groups get their applications in.

“If you are involved in a community group and have ideas about how to improve your local area, this is your chance. Be sure to apply before Tuesday 1 September and see if you could make your ideas on how to improve your local area a reality”.

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