Charities to lose out as East Lindsey District Council undertakes “short sighted” cuts

People are likely to see a reduction in services from support groups as a local council has pulled funding from charities and community groups as part of cost saving cuts.

Lincolnshire Community and Voluntary Service (LCVS) has had its funding pulled by East Lindsey District Council (ELDC) as part of this year’s budget cuts.

In the year 2014-15, LCVS which provides support to volunteers and charities, ranging from the East Lindsey Domestic Abuse Service to the Lincoln and Lindsey Blind Society, submitted successful funding bids exceeding £665,000 and worked with hundreds of local groups and placed volunteers in roles through the East Lindsey Volunteer Centre.

LCVS Chief Executive, David Fannin, described the decision as “short sighted” and “regrettable” but accepted that cuts have to be made.

“East Lindsey District Council has also stopped grant schemes meaning the district council is not putting any direct funding into the local community groups and has now pulled money from the safety net [to the groups].”

Speaking about LCVS’s four year relationship with the council, Mr Fannin said, “a lot has changed in four years and it will be hard to rebuild [the service] when it’s gone.”

A proposal put forward by LCVS to reduce the cost to the council by around 50% and allow the service to wind down over the next 12 months was rejected by the council in favour of the immediate saving.

ELDC, which is required to save £6 million over the next four years, has withdrawn all funding for the service with effect from April 2016.

The saving of cutting funding to LCVS amounts to £40,000 a year, around 3.5% of the amount that the council is required to save.

LCVS helped to bring in over £600,000 into East Lindsey’s community groups in the year of 2014-15 from funding sources out of the county, through its support in sourcing funding and volunteers for groups and charities, money which Mr Fannin said will have fed through to the local community.

Lincolnshire County Council, South Kesteven and South Holland district councils have all continued to provide funding to LCVS, with Boston Borough giving notice that they may pull financial support from April 2017.

by Tom McBeth (April 2016)

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