Fund first gives power to lo­cal peo­ple

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Ar­ran is to get a small share on a new com­mu­nity in­vest­ment fund which has been hailed as a first for Scot­land by the leader of North Ayr­shire Coun­cil.

The fund is a key com­po­nent of the coun­cil’s Fair for All strat­egy which is look­ing to al­le­vi­ate poverty across the re­gion. At a coun­cil meet­ing last week, elected mem­bers agreed to in­tro­duce the ap­proach which will de­volve funds to Lo­cal­ity Plan­ning Part­ner­ships.

The fund – which will im­me­di­ately have £2.6 mil­lion to be shared across the six lo­cal­i­ties – has been cre­ated to help the Lo­cal­ity Part­ner­ship model flour­ish by pro­vid­ing com­mu­ni­ties an op­por­tu­nity to iden­tify and in­vest in spe­cific lo­cal pri­or­i­ties to de­velop stronger com­mu­ni­ties. The funds are based on the pop­u­la­tion of each lo­cal­ity with Ar­ran get­ting just four per cent or £104,000.

Coun­cil leader Joe Cul­li­nane said: ‘The com­mu­nity in­vest­ment fund is a rad­i­cal step for the coun­cil. De­volv­ing these funds to the Lo­cal­ity Part­ner­ships, em­pow­er­ing them to in­vest money in their iden­ti­fied lo­cal pri­or­i­ties, is a first not only for us in North Ayr­shire but for any lo­cal author­ity in Scot­land.

‘This is com­mu­nity em­pow­er­ment in ac­tion, not just words. It gives mean­ing­ful power and re­sources to the Lo­cal­ity Part­ner­ships, which are made up of lo­cal ward coun­cil­lors and com­mu­nity rep­re­sen­ta­tives, to make a dif­fer­ence to their com­mu­ni­ties.’

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