Minutes of the Community First Brierley Hill panel meeting on 19th November

Community First Brierley HillNotes of the meeting of Community First, Brierley Hill, held on 19th November 2013 at St Michael’s Church, Bell Street South, commencing at 7pm.


Panel Members

Rachel Harris, David Hoskin, Graham Hudson, Tom McCormack, Peter Plant, John Rogers, Tim Sunter


Graham Abbott, Charlotte Dean, Geoff French, Ray Gibbs, Andrew Rigby, Carol Wootton


June Bowen, Chris Szygowski

Note of the previous meeting

The notes of the previous meeting were agreed as a correct record.

Matters Arising

a)  Participatory budgeting – following the last meeting an email newsletter was sent to over 100 email contacts informing them of the Big Brierley Hill Give Away, informing them how to apply and asking them to circulate information. A news release was issued to local media outlets. Information was disseminated via social media. An advice surgery was held on 22nd October at Brierley Hill library. In spite of this only four applications had been received.  On review of the applications it was noted that there were issues with each one.  Panel members were informed of this via email with the applications attached (11th November 2013.  Four panel members indicated that they felt that in view of the issues with the applications this meeting should be held as a normal panel meeting.  The applicants had been informed accordingly.

b) Emails were sent to the AW Surgeries Patients Panel, Brierley Hill Community Radio, Dudley Federation of Tenants and Residents and Tiny Tots following the last meeting informing them of the panels considerations.  Following this Brierley Hill Community Radio have submitted a further application.  No response has been received from the other applications.

Grants to date

£39,609.50 has been recommended by the panel to date.  £4,000 has been earmarked for the participatory budgeting process.  £325 has been allocated for panel expenses.  £45192 is available for the panel to the 31st March 2014.

Therefore the amounts available to recommend for funding is £4,000 from the participatory budgeting budget and £1257.50 from the remainder of the allocation.

Grants for consideration

TS ran through each of the grant applications received under the participatory budgeting process, highlighting the issues on each of them:  Age Concern appeared to be for a borough wide scheme and the panel had previously declined to support this on the grounds that it wished to focus the CF funding on schemes specifically of benefit to Brierley Hill residents; Similarly L4L was a scheme based just outside of Brierley Hill ward and it was not clear how many local residents would benefit; 3Cs had not submitted their request on an application form (although they had now done so); Radio Brierley Hill had submitted a request for £2,500 which exceeded the £1000 cap put upon applications under the participatory budgeting process.

A resubmission of Tiny Tots grant had been received in addition to the above.

CW indicated to the panel that The What Centre had submitted an application for funding.  TS indicated that he had not received this.  The panel agreed to consider the application in any case.

Recommendations for grants

The panel decided to deal with these in two parts – firstly by considering which of the grants it would like to support, then reviewing these in light of the funds available to 31st March.

Age Concern: CD spoke to her application.  Since submitting the request for support the focus of the project had now changed, and predominantly those invited to the Christmas event would come from the Brierley Hill area.  After receiving these reassurances the panel indicated that it wished to recommend the £750 requested.

Brierley Hill Community Radio:  AR updated the meeting with good news.  BHRC had received some other contributions, such as decks and had been invited to use Insight House as a venue for the project.  In view of this the project needed funding for the two performing rights licences required – a total of £850.  The panel indicated that it wished to recommend this amount.

L4L:  GF indicated that he was unsure what proportion of its members would come from the Brierley Hill ward and that he would go away and investigate this.  In view of this, and that the project would not take place until 2014, it was agreed that the application would be resubmitted when all of the information was known.  This would also enable the funding to be met from next year’s tranche.

3Cs:  DH declared an interest in this project.  TS indicated that since the papers for the meeting had gone out an application form had been received from 3Cs showing an extra £100 cash donation.  However, the application was for £1200 whilst the breakdown of expenditure only amounted to £1030.  The panel wished to recommend  the application and agreed to do so subject to TS talking to 3Cs and agreeing what amount should be submitted.

Tiny Tots: TM declared an interest in this project. The panel considered the resubmission of the application which was for a smaller amount (£820) than had previously been requested.  It was agreed to recommend this project for funding.

The What Centre:  CW took the panel through its application to support young people not in education, employment or training into work, by offering one to one help.  It was proposed to run advice sessions in Brierley Hill – possibly in the library.  The application was for £750.  The panel indicated that it wished to recommend this project for funding.

Having run through all the applications the panel noted that that the total of all the schemes it wished to recommend  was £4370.  Since this was less than the total amount available for the year to 31st March 2014 it was agreed to recommend all of the application.

Any Other Urgent Business

JR indicated that this would be the last meeting of the panel he would be able to attend as he would be moving to new employment in the Leeds area.  He therefore stood down as a member of the panel.  The meeting thanked JR for his work and gave its best wishes to him for his new job.

Date of Future Meetings

Wednesday 15th January 2014

Tuesday 18th March 2014

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