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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 30 June 2014

 

Report of the Leader

 

External Funding Applications

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To inform Cabinet of external funding applications submitted/allocated to maximise the amount of external funding sought/utilised to support the delivery of corporate objectives.

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet agree that the Council continues to act as lead body for the Revenue Out of School Childcare Grant of £94,037 for 2014/15 awarded to the Children & Young People's Partnership which includes the administration of the childcare grants and the employment of a part time Development Worker;

2.         That Cabinet continue to act as lead body for the Capital Local Authority Partnership Grant of £265 and the Revenue Grant of £35,925 which supports the authority maintain and enhance the environment and meet Biodiversity commitments.

3.         If the Local Authority Partnership Capital grant of £265 is approved, inclusion in the authority's Capital programmes.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet approves the acceptance of the Revenue Out of School Childcare grant including on-going responsibilities as lead body for the grant. 

2.         That Cabinet approves the submission of the Local Authority Partnership application 2014/15 and if approved, acceptance of the grant  including on-going responsibilities as lead body for the grant;

3.         That Cabinet authorises the Local Authority Partnership Grant of £265 be included in the authority's Capital Programme in accordance with financial regulations.

Background

2.         Corporate Management Team previously agreed new procedures to improve the way in which the Council assess and co-ordinates its bids for external funding.

3.         An 'External Funding Framework' covers the practicalities of maximising external funding opportunities to meet corporate objectives. The framework highlights the criteria that potential applicants must address and those applying for external funding grant to minimise risk to the Council.    

Relevant Issues and Options

Out of School Childcare Grant

4.         The Out of School Childcare Revenue Grant of £94,037 has been awarded to the Children and Young People's Partnership by Welsh Government and aims to support local authorities offer sufficient childcare in their local area. This will contribute to the delivery of the Welsh Government's Tackling Poverty Action Plan and Strategic Equality Plan.

5.         The grant contributes towards the setting up of new childcare settings, extends childcare places in existing childcare settings and supports the sustainability of existing out of school provisions.

6.         It is proposed the grant for 2014/15 is utilised to:

·           Support an existing holiday scheme for children on the Autistic Spectrum (High End);

·           Contribute towards the assisted places scheme for children in need and children with disabilities/additional needs in childcare;

·           Support the sustainability of breakfast/after school and holiday provision;

·           Assist flexible models of childcare i.e. shift pattern workers, weekend workers;

·           Deliver after school and holiday childcare for children through the Medium of Welsh.

7.         It is proposed to continue to employ a part time Childcare Development Worker until March 2015 to support providers in applying for a grant to continue out of school provision or to set up new provision. Applicants for grants will have set criteria for eligibility. Completed applications will be looked at by a panel and successful provisions will be notified. Successful applicants will be in areas where gaps have been identified in the Childcare Sufficiency Assessment 2013/14 (currently out for consultation).

8.         The Childcare Development Worker will also support the setting up of childcare settings/places where a gap has been identified either by geography, age, time or type, provide advice to childcare settings to assist them become sustainable, facilitate co-ordination between agencies and identify any training needs along with other related tasks.        .     

Local Authority Partnership Grant 2014/15

9.         The Local Authority Partnership Capital grant of £265 and Revenue grant of £35,925 is provided by Natural Resource Wales (Welsh Government) and supports locally delivered projects which contribute to Natural Resource Wales 11 Objectives: delivering or promoting Access and Recreation, Biodiversity, Education, Interpretation and Woodland Improvement Schemes (Coed Cymru). In addition, the projects must fall into one or more of the 3 grant pillars

·           Wildlife, Geology, Landscape and Seascapes;

·           Providing and Promoting Access and Recreation;

·           Promoting Employment Understanding and Behaviour Change.

10.      And in addition, must incorporate at least one of the cross cutting themes:

·           Emerging NEF Principles;

·           Capacity Building;

·           Regeneration;

·           Health and Wellbeing.

11.      Proposals for this year will look to support:  

·           Access and Recreation - Improving access to the Heritage Coast; adopt a path scheme; practical path improvements;

·           Biodiversity Delivery - mapping and monitoring of habitats; managing and monitoring High Brown Fritillary in Alun Valley/Old Castle Down Habitat; Adder population monitoring; Cosmeston Country Park reedbed and pond creation; Vale Conservation volunteers and land registry searches;

·           Interpretation Delivery - Interpretation of the Heritage Coast;

·           Education Delivery  - Schools small mammal survey; Education in the Heritage Coast and Country Parks; Porthkerry and Cosmeston Country Park programme of Biodiversity awareness in Schools;

·           Coed Cymru - Woodland improvement Scheme.    

12.      The Heritage Coast delivers many of CCW's biodiversity actions and targets. The team supports a substantial voluntary sector resource. A proportion of the grant is redistributed to the voluntary sector partners to deliver conservation benefit and diversity on the ground.      

   

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

13.      The Out of School Childcare grant 2014/15 will support a number of childcare settings to become self-sustainable after March 2015. The Childcare Development Worker is on a temporary contract.  

14.      The Out of School Childcare Grant has been awarded for this period only. Any funding offered to childcare settings will state that it will be for the period 1st April 2014 to 31st March 2015 only. On-going communication will continue with childcare settings to support their sustainability. Redundancy costs for the Childcare Development Worker will be covered by the local authority.

15.      For many years, the Glamorgan Heritage Coast has received a substantial proportion of its core funding from the formerly Countryside Council for Wales, now NRW grant scheme. Many projects have been delivered directly by rangers who are partly funded by the grant. In 2012/13, over half of CCW grant (25K) was used to fund Heritage Coast expenditure.    

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

16.      The Local Authority Partnership Grant will improve ecosystem resilience within the Vale, increase awareness and education of conservation and biodiversity issues amongst school children and improve the condition of wild habitats and creation of new high value habitats.  

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

17.      The Out of School Childcare Grant is required to enable the Children & Young People's Partnership to carry out its statutory duties under the Childcare Act 2006 which places a statutory duty on Local Authorities to look at the demands for childcare in their area and secure sufficient childcare to meet these demands.

18.      The Local Authority Partnership Grant 2014/15 will support the authority deliver statutory functions under the Natural Environmental and Rural Communities Act 2006 and Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010. Local Authorities, under the Natural Environmental and Rural Communities Act 2006 have a Duty to have regard to the conservation of biodiversity in exercising their functions. The Duty affects all public authorities and aims to raise the profile and visibility of biodiversity, to clarify existing commitments with regard to biodiversity, and to make it a natural and integral part of policy and decision making. Recent amendments to the conservation of Habitats and Species regulations 2010 included a Duty on LPAs to take steps in the exercise of their functions as they consider appropriate to contribute to…."the preservation, maintenance and re-establishment of a sufficient diversity and area of habitat for wild birds in the UK including by means of up keep, management and creation of such habitat".  

19.      On grant funding being approved or secured, the Council will enter into appropriate terms and conditions with the relevant funding body.

20.      The Council will have due regard to any partnership arrangements, working protocol or constitution where the Council is a lead authority for any grant directed through a partnership.     

Crime and Disorder Implications

21.      All the grant schemes will have a positive impact on the community, supporting access to after school clubs and holiday play schemes.  

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

22.      The Out of School Childcare Grant would support childcare infrastructure in the Vale. This includes the establishment and sustainability of childcare settings, breakfast clubs and after school clubs required by parents.   

Corporate/Service Objectives

23.      The Out of School Childcare Grant supports the delivery of a number of corporate plan priorities, in particular CYP1 "provide young people and their families with a flying start by increasing access to suitable childcare information, places and activities which meet their particular needs", and CYP2 "develop and promote opportunities for all children and young people including those with a disability or who undertake a caring role to play, physical and cultural activity".

24.      The Local Authority Partnership Grant will support the delivery of a number of environmental priorities through protecting and maintaining the environment.

Policy Framework and Budget

25.      This is a matter for executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

26.      The Children and Young People's Partnership and the Early Years and Childcare Partnership are consulted on the use of the Out of School Childcare Grant. A grants panel comprising of Council officers and representatives from the voluntary sector will determine how the grants funding available will be utilised. 

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

27.      Corporate Resources

Background Papers

External Funding Proforma - Out of School Childcare Grant 2014/15

Out of School Childcare Grant 2014/15 - Breakdown of proposed costs 

External Funding Proforma - Local Authority Partnership Grant 2014/15

Local Authority Partnership Grant 2014/15 - Breakdown of project costs. 

 

Contact Officer

Mike Jones, Business Manager (Partnerships)

 

Officers Consulted

Debbie Maule, Children's Partnership Co-ordinator;

Mark Davies, Children & Young People's Partnership Manager

Erica Dixon, Ecologist

Bob Guy, Operational Manager, Countryside and Economic Projects;

Head of Legal Services

Laura Davis, Finance Support Manager

Carolyn Michael, Operational Manager Accountancy. 

 

Responsible Officer:

Huw Isaac, Head of Performance and Development

 

 

 

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