Friday, 4 March 2011

Eric Pickles must clarify his intentions on Voluntary Sector funding

Clive Betts MP and Chair, Select Committee on Communities and Local Government has written to Secretary of State Eric Pickles today saying that if the Government is to introduce legislation to proscribe council funding of the voluntary sector, he must announce the detail of his intentions immediately.

Clive Betts said:
“The government’s stated Localism agenda doesn’t seem to have lasted very long. But, if it is to go into reverse on that policy in relation to councils and the voluntary sector, it must do it immediately.

It is totally unreasonable and unfair – both on local councils and to local voluntary organisations – for the Secretary of State to suggest that he is minded to legislate to determine a new financial regime for the relationship between councils and voluntary organisations to have effect in 2011/12, but for him not to announce any details.

Councils are agreeing their budgets now in accordance with a statutory timetable. Voluntary organisations are setting their budgets recognising the grant-aid they have been told they are likely to receive. Both are now in the process of issuing redundancy notices to staff, in accordance with statutory requirements.”