Kimberley City Council adopted a policy this week that will guide them on selecting which community groups and organizations will receive City funding.
It had been a goal of this Council since elected to enact some guidelines to follow, and with the lead of Councillors Kent Goodwin and Sandra Roberts, the policy was presented on Monday evening this week.
“It is the policy of the City of Kimberley to consider, within its financial capacity, financial support to community organizations within the City,” the preamble states. “This support is provided in recognition of the value these organizations provide to the well-being and vibrancy of the community and in helping the City retain a strong community focus. The City recognizes that supporting volunteer community-based organizations is fundamental to maintaining our quality of life. The goal of this policy is to establish open and transparent guidelines for the evaluation and distribution of Community Grants.”
One of the things the policy did was to reduce the number of standing grants to three organizations. Standing grants go to what the City considers core community groups. These grants are given for general operating expenses. The three groups will not have to reapply each year for the grants. The recipients of yearly standing grants, with a yearly 1.5 per cent increase for inflation are:
• Kimberley Arts Council (2015 Grant $25,375)
• Kimberley and District Chamber of Commerce In Kind (2015 Grant $9,310)
• Kimberley District Heritage Society (2015 Grant $23,812)
It was on the issue of standing grants that the one dissenting vote on the new policy came.
Coun. Bev Middlebrook voted against it.
“I believe the standing grants should include the Youth Centre, as they have for years,” Middlebrook said.
“It’s likely that in the future other groups will be added to the standing grants, depending on the robustness of their boards and what’s happening,” said Goodwin.
“A great amount of work went into this policy,” said Coun. Darryl Oakley. “It provides clarity.”
Under the policy, all other grants, such as discretionary, personal travel grants, in-kind grants and project/event grants can be applied for throughout the year, but these grants have access to a limited amount of funds.