Good news as vital projects are offered hope
Glasgow City Council has responded to widespread criticism and executed a u-turn on rejected funding bids.
Over 100 bids by third sector groups previously rejected have now been deemed eligible after a rethink by council bosses.
As TFN revealed last month, dozens of vital projects were facing closure after the city council controversially rejected funding bids, claiming they failed to adhere to new strict criteria.
Many were ditched because they failed to provide very specific supporting documents. Others failed because they forgot to include attachments.
The integrated grant fund (IGF), which will be replaced by the communities fund, will now be extended for six months instead from April 1 to allow the new applications to be assessed.
A total of 500 groups applied for funding from the new scheme, of which 125 were rejected because one or more of the six documents required had not been attached.
Leading MSPs including Nicola Sturgeon, Humza Yousaf and Ivan McKee added their names to a letter expressing concerns about the new scheme in January.
Councillor Jennifer Layden said: “I want to thank colleagues who have given me input and feedback on the scheme.
“Following on from a short extension in January to allow organisations to provide missing documents, a further 111 applications have become eligible.
“They will now require assessment and this has meant that the timetable for decisions on the fund has had to be extended for six months.
“This extension is for community and voluntary organisations.
“One of the important points that we really need to emphasise here is that this extension is not an automatic transition to the communities fund for current IGF recipients. Applicants need to plan accordingly if they are not successful. We have ensured that no area partnership will lose funding.
“We hope that we can come to the city administration committee after summer recess to propose groups that would be allocated funding through this programme.
“We want to implement a new grant funding programme that is fair and transparent to all third-sector organisations across the city but there is still more work to do.”
A massive £47,631,924 will be allocated to the fund between 2020 and 2023.
Labour councillor Martin Rhodes welcomed the development.
He said: “I think it’s important that we do move forward with this and create stability and security for organisations.
“One of the issues throughout the process – and it has been referred to by the city convener – is the little number of staff working on this.
“Are we confident now that we will get the work done or are there more resources needed? If so, you will certainly have the support of this group.
“Overall, we need to involve the third sector more in this process in terms of new initiatives.”