Dear Devon County Council,

Community Funding – County Councillors Discretionary/Locality Budgets (D/LB)–
This FOI request relates to funding of community projects by Devon County Council (DCC) as per subject heading. Please provide an official FOI Reference Number for this request.
Please provide all requested information and responses in electronic format by email.
Information requested is for a five year period as detailed below or for as long as this scheme has been operating if less than five years and refers only to expenditure within/to the community and not to any related DCC administration costs.
1. What was the total amount of funding distributed annually across Devon County for financial years commencing April1st 2007/08/09/10/11/12 - 2012 (projected to 31st March if amounts not yet finalised)?

2. What was the total amount of funding distributed annually by Exeter City County Councillors financial years commencing April1st 2007/08/09/10/11/12 - 2012 (projected to 31st March if amounts not yet finalised)?

3. Do the figures at 1 and 2 above include any additional funding provision (over and above that initially allocated by DCC) as a result of the sale/disposal of DCC assets, excluding the sale of Exeter Airport (see 4 below)? If yes – a) what did the sale of these assets realise and was any of this money distributed through D/LB, and b) What was the amount of additional funding distributed annually for financial years commencing April1st 2007/08/09/10/11/12 - 2012 (projected to 31st March if amounts not yet finalised) as a result of the sale of assets?

4. It is my understanding that in 2007 an allocation of £25,000 had previously been distributed to all County Councillors over and above their basic Discretionary/Locality Allowance as a result of the sale of Exeter Airport. Is this correct?

5. It is also my understanding that a further £25,000 from the sale of Exeter Airport was allocated to all County Councillors Discretionary/Locality Allowance in the financial year 2011/12, with the understanding that this is spent within 3 years. Is this correct?

6. Re 4 and 5 above –Can you please confirm that all Devon County Councillors received a total of £50,000 over and above their standard D/LB allowance as a share of the proceeds from the sale of Exeter Airport? If all DCC Councillors did not receive this £50,000, how many did and where are they located?

7. How much of the Councillors share of the proceeds from the sale of Exeter Airport remain unspent or unallocated to date?

8. Where, if applicable, are the proceeds from the sale of all DCC assets posted in the annual financial report/accounts?

9. What are the protocols outlined by DCC as to how this funding is allocated? Please provide a copy of these protocols; including all ‘prohibitions’ that exist (see 10 below).

10. Devon County Council (DCC) have amended their ‘Prohibitions List’, i.e. the criteria that stipulate how community funding can be used, from –

“The County Council Administration which brought the locality budget scheme into being specified a number of situations for which locality budgets must not be used: These are:"
1. "Reinstating a cut in service or activity arising from an earlier policy decision of the County Council or other public body..."
TO –
1. “Reinstating a cut in service or activity arising from an earlier policy decision of the County Council or other public body, excepting where any one-off funding is required to mitigate the immediate impact of any service reduction where a creative alternative solution has been found, that in other respects meets the operating principles, provided also that there is no commitment upon the Council or Member to provide ongoing support.....”

DCC’s amendments appear to now effectively permit County Council community funding to be directed away from what may perceived by the taxpayer as ‘true’ community activities to subsidise/finance less community focussed projects (see 11 below). Am I correct in my interpretation of these amendments? At what meeting(s) were these amendments to the Prohibitions List discussed and who attended this/these meeting(s)? Please provide a copy of the Minutes of this and any other relevant meeting(s). Was there any Public Consultation process included in the decision making prior to the implementation of changes to the Prohibition List?

11. I have been informed that, for example, the provision of grit bins and treatment of weeds on the public highways has already been funded from Discretionary/Locality Budgets, both of which were previously funded by alternative County Council revenue sources? Is this correct?

12. What services have already been provided by DCC and funded from Discretionary/Locality Budgets that were previously funded by alternative revenue sources? What has been the total expenditure to date from D/LB on these other services since the amendments to the Prohibitions List?

13. What other services have DCC agreed should be transferred from their existing funding to Discretionary/Locality Budgets, if only on a temporary basis and what will be the anticipated total expenditure up to end of financial year 2015?

14. Where and how is Discretionary/Locality Budget funding posted/detailed in DCC’s annual financial report/accounts?

Yours faithfully,

Bob Turner

Freedom of Information Office - Mailbox, Devon County Council

Dear Mr Turner

Information Request: 03284

I received your request on 20 November 2012 for information which may be
held by Devon County Council regarding County Councillors discretionary
and locality budgets.

You are entitled under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 to be informed
whether or not the information you have requested is held by Devon County
Council and if so to be given access to that information within 20 working
days (subject to any exemptions).

You should expect to receive a response to your request by 18 December
2012.

Yours sincerely
 
Rebecca Eden
Information Governance Support Officer
Devon County Council
Customer Relations and Information Governance Team
Room 120
County Hall
Topsham Road
Exeter
EX2 4QD
Tel: 01392 38 3445

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Please note that Devon County Council now publishes most Freedom of
Information and Environmental Information Regulations request responses on
its publication scheme. Details of previous responses are available at
[2]http://www.devon.gov.uk/disclosurelogs-s.... The council requests
that members of the public make use of its disclosure log search facility
before making a Freedom of Information or Environmental Information
Regulations request, as it is possible that the information sought, may
have been disclosed in response to a prior request.

 

show quoted sections

Freedom of Information Office - Mailbox, Devon County Council

1 Attachment

F.A.O Bob Turner

 

Dear Mr Turner,

Information Request 03284

I write further to your request for information under the Freedom of
Information Act 2000 received on 20^th November 2012.

 

In reply to your enquiry please find Devon County Council's response
attached.

 

I hope this information is of assistance to you.

Yours sincerely

Jenny Goodall

Information Governance Officer

Devon County Council
Customer Relations and Information Governance Team
Room 120
County Hall
Topsham Road
Exeter   EX2 4QD
Tel: 01392 38 3549

Please note that Devon County Council now publishes most Freedom of
Information and Environmental Information Regulations request responses on
its publication scheme. Details of previous responses are available at
[1]http://www.devon.gov.uk/disclosurelogs-s.... The council requests
that members of the public make use of its disclosure log search facility
before making a Freedom of Information or Environmental Information
Regulations request, as it is possible that the information sought, may
have been disclosed in response to a prior request.

Your right to complain
If for any reason you are not satisfied with how your request has been
handled, please write to Devon County Council’s Freedom of Information
Office, County Hall, Topsham Road, Exeter, EX2 4QD. Details about our
Access to Information complaints procedure can be found at
[2]http://www.devon.gov.uk/complaintshandling. If your complaint is not
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matter to the Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water
Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF.

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Disclaimer: [3]http://www.devon.gov.uk/email.shtml
Applicable to private messages: "Devon County Council accepts no legal
responsibility for the contents of this message. The views expressed do
not reflect those of Devon County Council"

 

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