Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Scottish Landfill Community Funding - an explaination of changes and transition

Hello to all - I've been spending a little bit of time coming to terms with the new Scottish Landfill Community Fund, it's regulations and the differences that are showing up from the ENTRUST regulated UK LCF system.

Ok, so the start of this is that as part of the devolution of powers to the Scottish Government,  a variety of Taxation now falls within their Scope. One of these taxes is, suprise suprise, Landfill Tax.

As such, SEPA, or  Revenue Scotland will be overseeing and enforcing landfill taxation, ie those monies owed to the Scottish Treasury by landfill site operators who accept waste for final disposal through landfilling. In many cases, and particularly in Falkirk, there are Materials recycling Facilities (MRFs) that will sort the mixed wastes into those components that can be recycled and those that must be landfilled. That final component is what we are interested in here.

The Tax  itself
The Landfill Tax rate for 2015 is set at £82.20 per tonne for mixed wastes, ie those wastes that can represent a danger to human health, biodiversity, climate ie contains hazardous materials of some sort. For inert wastes such as demolition debris the rate will stand at £2.60 per tonne. It's really the first number that interests us here. Landfill community fund is in fact a tax credit issued to the operator who has signed up to the scheme. As with the UK Scheme, the Scottish LCF scheme states that the Operator can claim 90% of the total fund required, with the remaining 10 % coming from a community source. This is known as the Third Party Contribution, and is the applicants responsibility to find.  Don't worry about it too much at this stage though, as if you come to make an application to SLCF, all will be carefully explained about Third Party Contributions.

Proximity to a landfill site
The Landfill community fund was originally developed to help communities affected by the presence of a landfill site (Smell, Dust, Noise, risk of fire or explosion etc) and as such the rule of thumb was that the project must be within a 10 mile radius of a landfill site. This has not changed, but what the Scottish Government has done, in the interests of fairness is to say that if you are within 10 miles of a Landfill site OR a waste transfer station,  you can make application to any landfill Community Fund source in Scotland. This spreads the total amount of LCF around the country, but you still have to meet the proximity test.

The SLCF Objects
The Objects are those types of projects that can be funded, or are "Compliant"  with the scheme. As with any funding source there are areas that are prefered and those that simply wont get funded. The Old scheme had 3 main areas, those being Public amenity, Biodiversity and Historic buildings. Below is an exact copy of the regulations for the new Scottish system

Objects
There are six main areas of work (“objects”) that qualify for funding under the Scottish Landfill
Communities Fund (SLCF). The following describes the type of projects that are eligible for
funding under the SLCF.
Object A The reclamation, remediation, restoration or other
operation on land to facilitate economic, social or
environmental use.

Object B Community based recycling, re-use and waste
prevention projects.

Object C To provide, maintain or improve public park or other
public amenity.


Object D The conservation or promotion of biological diversity
through the provision, conservation, restoration or
enhancement of a natural habitat or the maintenance or
recovery of a species in its natural habitat .

Object E The maintenance, repair or restoration of a building,
other structure or a site of archaeological interest which
is a place of religious worship, or a site of historic or
architectural or archaeological interest and is open to
the public.

Object F The provision of financial, administration and other
similar services to projects.

The Main differences from the old scheme are as follows;

Object B, ie Community Recycling actually used to exist under the Entrust system, until the UK Government pulled it, along with the lions share of the original funding. The old Object C/CC funded a number of ongoing recycling projects in the area, such as Action Recycle, Grangemouth Enterprise Ltd and the Falkirk end of Alloa Community Enterprises. I believe all of these, apart from ACE who are still going strong, shut down shortly after the original funding was removed. Its good to see it back, and hopefully the Scottish Government will have the wisdom to increase funding levels for this object.

Object C, used to be called Object D under the Entrust regulations, and similarly Biodiversity projects which were known as Object D (a) are now simply D.

Object E represents an evolution, in that the category, whilst it did exist previously now include site of Archaeological, and historic interest. Any site of building that an applicant wishes to restore or repair must be designated, ie counted as important by the government and protected under a designated status. For example a B listed building is said to have a designation, which is it's listed status. 

As always every project must have a strong element of community access, and applications must be made by non profit organisations.


Private Funding status 
The Scottish Landfill Community Fund will retain its status as a Private Funding Source, which means it can be legally matched to state aid funding under UK, and now Scottish Tax Law. 

FETS Future Activities
As far as we can tell here at FET it should be business as usual. The transition has already been made, so that new monies should start to flow soon into the SLCF. If you have a project currently registered to ENRUST then it needs to be completed by 31st March 2017. Thats when the old scheme is irrevocably closed to applicants in Scotland.  There is a small amount of UK funds left in "The Pot" which will be distributed in the most appropriate fashion by the Board of Directors of FET. However this is the new SLCF building up, and  is open for application now.

As always FET need good project ideas that follow the objects stated above (A through F) - that are driven by a constituted Community Group or Charity / Non profit making organisation. As always please contact me, Arthur Berg with you idea before launching  an application. I can be reached on

Tel 01324 504816
Email info@fet.org.uk


or write to 

Falkirk Environment Trust
Abbotsford House
Davids Loan
Bainsford
FK2 7YZ

Questions?

If you have any questions feel free to comment below,  Email me on info@fet.org.uk, or call me on the number shown above.I'll do my best to answer all questions, and if I cant, I'll find someone who can. I hope this post is useful  to you.


Arthur Berg

No comments:

Post a Comment