Councillors seek grants over­haul

Pilbara News - - PILBARA NEWS - Tom Zaun­mayr

Councillors have called for an over­haul of the grants of­fered by the City of Kar­ratha af­ter a rec­om­men­da­tion to re­duce funds for the An­nual Com­mu­nity As­so­ci­a­tion De­vel­op­ment Scheme was knocked back for the sec­ond year in a row.

A re­view of all five grant schemes was put on the ta­ble at last week’s coun­cil meet­ing, which rec­om­mended fund­ing to com­mu­nity as­so­ci­a­tions be halved to $50,000 each, with in­creases to the an­nual and quar­terly grants schemes for 2017-18.

Coun­cil­lor Grant Cu­cel said ACADS was im­por­tant as it gave con­trol to com­mu­ni­ties as to where their money was spent.

Com­mu­nity as­so­ci­a­tions have in­creas­ingly put the $100,000 fund­ing al­lo­ca­tion in re­serve, al­tered its pur­pose or de­layed its de­liv­ery.

Mr Cu­cel of­fered an al­ter­na­tive that would see un­used funds al­lo­cated to the other two schemes.

Coun­cil­lor Fiona White-Har­tig said the Wick­ham Com­mu­nity As­so­ci­a­tion, of which she is pres­i­dent, “may as well give up” if fund­ing were cut to $50,000.

City of Kar­ratha Mayor Peter Long said councillors had a strong view that the level of fund­ing for com­mu­nity as­so­ci­a­tions should be main­tained.

“Coun­cil also recog­nises that our other com­mu­nity grant fund­ing pro­grams are over­sub­scribed and many com­mu­nity groups are pitch­ing wor­thy projects, how­ever the level of fund­ing across all grant pro­grams is seen to be ap­pro­pri­ate in the cur­rent eco­nomic cli­mate,” he said.

“We are re­view­ing our poli­cies to en­sure our funds and ex­pended to give the great­est ben­e­fit to the com­mu­nity across our three com­mu­nity grant fund­ing streams.”

An al­ter­nate mo­tion by Coun­cil­lor John Lally to put the is­sue on the ta­ble and es­tab­lish a work­ing party was passed.

The pool of grants from the City to­tals $975,000, nearly six times higher than grants of­fered by the Town of Port Hed­land.

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