Financial juggling agreed to save councillor’s donation

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A FINANCIAL juggling exercise has been agreed to support a scheme intended to give residents more of a say on important issues in their community.

Skegness Town Council has agreed to accept Coun Sid Dennis’s £800 Councillors Community Initiative grant until the St Clement’s Residents Association has a bank account to receive the funds itself.

The association is hoped to give residents an opportunity to highlight local problems and raise suggestions for beneficial community projects, however, as it is still in the process of being created, Coun Dennis was unable to donate to it directly. With East Lindsey District Council’s final deadline for grant applications approaching, Coun Dennis feared his donation may have been unable to proceed and asked Skegness Town Council to receive the money temporarily, safeguarding it for future use.

Speaking at an extraordinary meeting held to discuss the request Coun Dennis admitted that ‘a lot of this is my problem’ but explained that ELDC was unaware of any regulations preventing the town council receiving the money as an interim measure.

Skegness town clerk Steve Larner also believed there to be no ‘issues from a policy point of view’ and it would be a simple matter of ‘money in, money out’.

Mayor of Skegness Coun Steve Kirk supported the plan which he felt would benefit ‘Skegnes’s most deprived ward’ and Coun Neil Cooper applauded Coun Dennis’s commitment to ensure the money was not lost.

Though keen to ensure the residents’ association did not miss out on the donation, several councillors felt the matter could have been solved without calling councillors to an extraordinary meeting. Coun Gary Ellis said that similar issues in the past had been dealt with directly by ELDC ‘so to go to this length should not have been necessary.’