Today sees the launch of the Councillors Community Initiative Fund. This is basically a ward based fund that local councillors either do or don't agree to create. Local groups can bid for money from the fund depending on where they are based. That's the good news.
The bad news is that if you are a group in Speke/Garston there is no fund for you!
This strange state of affairs is a direct result of action, or inaction, by Labour's Councillors in the ward.
The fund money comes from the cash already allocated to wards as part of the Neighbourhood Fund. Councillors were asked if they wanted to put aside money from this for a pot that local groups could bid in to. Not all wards were able to do this. Some for example had virtually no Neighbourhood Fund to allocate. A few had alread committed their money. But most had enough to enable them to decide to free some up.
In Cressington, we decided to allocate £5,000 and we very much hope local organisations will have some great ideas about how they would want to spend some of this.
In Speke Garston however the Councillors have allocated a great big nothing. So despite being allocated the most money in the City, they are not even able to put aside a few thousand for local charities and voluntary groups.
Next time I hear Labour talk about the need to help local organisations I will be bearing this example in mind!