Agenda item

Climate Action Fund

For committee to review the draft fund guidance and discuss opportunities for scheme promotion and recommend it’s adoption to Cabinet (paper to follow).


Cabinet member introduced this report on the climate action fund, which will actively encourage, support and involve communities to come up with projects that support climate action.


Officers had now been able to produce a proposal to administer the £50,000 one-off fund for projects, including a simple application scoring criteria matrix.


The funding will be open to projects that haven’t started yet, not existing works. It was important that councillors promote the scheme at community level.


Comments from committee and clarifications:


  • Clarification was given on how the process differs from previous award decision processes. There was no panel required, it was based on the councillor grants scheme, and was a typical structure of new schemes. Policy and Insight team will look at applications with the Head of Policy and Programmes, with strong member input, for their on-the-ground knowledge of community needs. A committee member suggested that ward members should be involved earlier on, rather than on the awarding of a fund towards a project.
  • It was suggested that where listed buildings were involved in an application, it might put off applicants due to lengthy planning applications. Head of Policy and Programmes explained that we could not presuppose, but planning applications were completely separate and no comment can be made until an application was seen.
  • Discussion around school applications not being allowed. It was explained that schools had access to other funding streams. It was a historical rule, and schools do fall under OCC remit. This was a new scheme and we do need to see what the demand will be from the community. We should be cautious for now and monitor the progress. Guide groups etc may be applicable. This rule shall remain the same but if there was a low uptake it could be revisited.
  • Project examples are not exhaustive. Applications will be viewed for their own merits.
  • Was a 6-week application window too short? It was responded that it was a standard window.
  • A comms plan will ensue only when Cabinet approves the scheme. The information was public. Active promotion across the council, town and parish, would occur in the 3 weeks before the scheme opens for applications, once we obtain Cabinet approval. Councillors were urged to help in this promotion window.
  • Chair suggested an emphasis on climate in the ranking, but it was clarified that the scoring had already incorporated this. Concern that non climate related projects could score higher. Officers will consider project relevance to climate as an initial check.


Councillors asked whether ward members could be informed at application level. Head of Policy and Programmes suggested adding the wording “ward members” alongside cabinet members, in the document, with permission obtained from the Head of Legal and Democratic. The committee resolved to agree with this.



That Head of Policy and Programmes will check with Head of Legal and Democratic, as to whether the wording “ward members” could be added alongside “cabinet members” within the document, as committee agreed that they wish for ward members to be notified at an earlier stage.


The committee resolved to agree with the following:




Resolved to agree:

(a) That the Climate Action Fund policy and guidelines be recommended to Cabinet for approval;

(b) That subject to Cabinet approving (a) above, CEAC endorse the launch of the Fund and the Head of Policy and Programmes making final award decisions, in consultation with the relevant cabinet members (with the request to add the wording, “ward members”)

(c) That CEAC members promote the fund within their communities to help ensure a wide reach of applicants


Committee overall felt that all councillors should be encouraged to promote the scheme after it had received approval at Cabinet, with comms as soon as possible after approval.


Supporting documents: