8th Dec, 2019

Here's £5,000 - grant cash for Redditch councillors rubber stamped

Harry Leach 23rd Nov, 2018

PLANS to shake up the grants system and give all 29 borough councillors £5,000 to donate to good causes were given the green light at Monday’s Full Council meeting in Redditch.

The move, which will run for a one year pilot period, sees the end of the council’s grant panel which had required organisations to apply for money.

Instead each councillor will be given £5,000 to use in their own ward.

At the meeting, Coun David Bush (Con, West), portfolio holder for economic development town centre and commercialism, said: “The grant panel system is dated.

“It really is time for change.”

However several Labour councillors raised their concerns about how the expenditures would be monitored.

Coun Joe Baker (Lab, Greenlands) said: “To be honest I’m bewildered by this decision.

“It has more ‘flaws’ than the Empire State Building.

“Very few groups in my ward spend that kind of money.

“There is potential abuse of this syste. It’s flawed and could fall apart.”

Coun John Fisher (Lab, Matchborough) said: “There’s no transparency with this system.

“How will we know who spends what? And more importantly why fix something that isn’t broken?”

Council Leader Matt Dormer (Con, West) insisted the money would be spent wisely.

He said: “Every last penny will be checked and double checked.

“No one in their right mind would misspend this money because they would get caught out.”

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