Community grants requests assessed

Council to make decision on Community Grant Review Committee recommendations on July 9

Different community groups presented their projects to the Community Grant Review Committee on June 27 and 28.

Eighteen local non-profit and not-for-profit groups brought forward information regarding their respective community grant applications, and addressed concerns the committee had for each project.

Councillor Maja Tait, Community Grant Review Committee chair, reiterated previous statements that the committee was limited in funds, stating groups requested a cumulative amount of $104,600 and only $65,000 were available.

“Most groups, I think, understand the challenges and so forth,” she said, at the June 28 meeting in council chambers.

Tait told attendants the point of the meeting was, “an opportunity to hear from you as to find ways that we can help you fund your organization.”

After the public presentations, the committee assessed the merits of each project, longevity of certain organizations, and whether or not they were eligible under the terms of reference — namely, whether or not the group was requesting operating costs, which would disqualify the application.

Request were then either fully or partially funded or turned down.

All members voiced it was difficult to deny funding, but a majority agreed that instructions for applications should be clearer in the future.

“I found with some of the presentations, they don’t give a sense of, ‘Here’s what we’re going to do, with what we’re going to get,’” said Alexander Chandler, Community Grants Committee member. “Sometimes it’s hard to decipher what the actual project is.”

“I would really like the applicants to get some clear instructions on what we can do and what we can’t,” said fellow member, Jeff Bateman.

There was also discussion on reviewing grant policies and terms of references to determine whether or not they are meeting the community’s needs.

The committee will make recommendations to council, who will make the final decisions on July 9.