Council agrees to match European Fisheries Funding

COUNCILLORS have agreed to provide £521,618 for match funding to allow Dumfries and Galloway Council to accept a grant award of £579,576 from the European Fisheries Fund.

Councillor Roger Grant is Chair of the Planning, Housing and Environment Committee and said: “Micro, small and medium sized enterprises, third sector and public sector organisations could all benefit from this fund. I welcome this excellent opportunity for Dumfries and Galloway to receive funds that will improve and regenerate communities, provide assistance with business efficiency and marketing, provide additional jobs and improve the environment, amongst many other things. I am particularly pleased that the funding includes a category to develop, protect and support fishing communities.”

Before organisations can apply for funding, a Fisheries Local Action Group (FLAG) for Dumfries and Galloway must be set up. The council will support the FLAG which will consider applications and may initiate projects itself. FLAG membership will be formalised in the coming weeks with a call for applications for membership in April 2012. A broad spectrum of representation will be sought for the FLAG and the opportunity to join will be advertised widely through existing business and third sector networks. Council representation on the FLAG will need to come to a future committee.

Once the FLAG is up and running there will be calls for grant applications, four calls a year for grants of less than £5000 and two calls a year for major grants. Applicants will be required to provide between 25 and 50 percent of match funding for their project.

A Project Administrator post will be established over the fixed term of the funding period (up to 2014).