Decision details

Breckland Enterprise & Learning Account (BELA 3)

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes

Purpose:

The report sought Cabinet’s approval for £20,000 funding to be released from the match funding reserve to enhance and enable Phase 3 of the ongoing Breckland Enterprise Learning Account (BELA) project which offered small grants of up to £500 maximum to micro businesses based within the Breckland District.  The project had recently been awarded £10,000 from the Breckland Partnership to enable Phase 2 and the Board had recently agreed a further £5,000 towards Phase 3.

Decision:

RESOLVED that £20,000 from the Match Funding Reserve (MFR) be approved to deliver the project to enable the Council & Breckland Partnership to assist a minimum of 50 businesses through a total fund of £25,000.

Reasons for the decision:

Additional funding for this initiative would help maximise the opportunity for start up and micro businesses to obtain skills development, business support, essential items of equipment, advice and guidance at a time when businesses such as these were at their most vulnerable.

 

If the funding was not approved it would result in the subsequent scaling down of this initiative.

 

There was not other grant scheme like BELA available to businesses.  If Members declined to agree the funding the one small form of grant aid the business community could access would be gone along with the opportunities that it offered.

Alternative options considered:

Option 1

 

Members agree to funding the initiative to the full amount of £20,000 to enable an additional 50 (minimum) start up micro businesses across the Breckland District to directly benefit from the funding available thereby ensuring their needs were met especially during these challenging times, and progress towards meeting the Council’s own strategic aims.

 

Option 2

 

Members agree to fund the initiative to a lesser amount which would result in diminished outputs and outcomes for Breckland based start up and micro businesses.

 

Option 3

 

Members decline to agree funding to enable the project to continue.  If this was the case the project would diminish but would continue to run with the £5,000 awarded by the Breckland Partnership which would enable 10 further businesses to be assisted.

Publication date: 14/05/2009

Date of decision: 12/05/2009

Decided at meeting: 12/05/2009 - Cabinet

Effective from: 22/05/2009

Accompanying Documents: