FORTH VALLEY _ LOMOND LEADER

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					                   FORTH VALLEY & LOMOND LEADER
                    LOCAL ACTION GROUP MEETING

                    LIBRARY, DENNY HIGH SCHOOL
                             8 JUNE 2009




PRESENT

DERECK FOWLES                Chair - Community Representative (Stirling)
PETER SUNDERLAND             Vice-Chair - Business representative (Stirling)
LESLEY CAMPBELL              LLTTNPA
IAN HOWARTH                  Community Representative (Falkirk)
DAYE TUCKER                  Land Manager (Stirling)
FRANK PARK                   Business Representative (Stirling)
FRANK BEATTIE                Scottish Enterprise
DAVID REDWOOD                Community Representative (Stirling)
DAVID MacPHERSON             Community Representative (Stirling)
MIKE STRACHAN                FCS
MIKE STONE                   Community Representative (Stirling)
LESLEY GALLAGHER             Community Planning Partnership
LESLEY MacARTHUR             Falkirk Council




IN ATTENDANCE

ANNE-MICHELLE KETTERIDGE     FVL LEADER Programme Manager
SUE WYLLIE                   FVL LEADER Development Officer
STUART DAVIES                FVL LEADER Development Officer
IRENE WATTERSON              FVL LEADER Claims Officer and Minute Taker
RITA CALLANDER               Guest from Rural Tayside LAG



APOLOGIES

Hugh Lightbody               Stirling Council
Gary Groves                  Business Representative (West Dunbartonshire)
Elizabeth Hendry             West Dunbartonshire Council
Marina McGuire               CVS
Guy Wedderburn               Land Manager (Falkirk)
Karen Moore                  Community Representative (Falkirk)
Ross Lilley                  SNH
Lynn Hamilton                VisitScotland
Grant Eals                   Clackmannanshire Council
ITEM                                                                     ACTION

 1     Welcome

       DF welcomed everyone to Denny High School. DF also
       welcomed Rita Callander from Rural Tayside LEADER LAG.

       DF then introduced Stuart Miller, the Headmaster of Denny High
       who gave the LAG a warm welcome to the new school which
       opened in February of this year. He thanked the LAG for their
       support in the Safer Routes to School Project and the Topps
       Farm Project which he says will greatly benefit the pupils from
       Denny High.

 2     Sederunt and Apologies

       DF noted apologies from GG, EH, MMcG, GE, KM, RL, LH and
       HL.

       PS arrived at the meeting.

 3     Minutes of Last Meeting and Matters Arising

       The Minutes of the previous meeting were agreed as a true and
       accurate record proposed by DMcP and seconded by IH.

       Matters Arising

       Regarding the Clacks Community representation on the LAG,
       AMK advised that there had been a suggestion to approach the
       Clacks Social Enterprise Network to ask for a nomination to
       allow the LAG to have a choice of candidate. This was now in
       hand as she and SD were due to meet with the Clacks Social
       Enterprise Network on 17 June. As the LAG does not currently
       have Social Enterprise representation, it was agreed that this
       could be quite positive for the LAG. AMK reminded the LAG that
       Clackmannanshire should have a minimum of one community
       member but there was no problem having two on the LAG if the
       LAG decided it wanted to have two.

       DF asked if there was any news on the transfer of Option 321 of
       Rural Priorities to LEADER. AMK advised that the review hadn‟t
       yet been published so she had no further news, although she
       was expecting the announcement imminently.




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4   News from Managing Authority

    AMK advised the LAG that there is a new management structure
    within Scottish Government. The LEADER Managing Authority
    had now been absorbed into a new team called The Rural
    Communities Empowerment Team, headed up by Angela
    Wiseman. At present, it is unknown who our contact will be
    since there is now a vacancy as Ian Matheson, who has been
    our contact since the start of the new LEADER Programme, will
    now be working on Crofting related activities.

    AMK also advised that there has been no more information
    regarding putting in a bid to manage Axis 4 of the Fisheries
    Fund. She had spoken to the officer at the Scottish Government
    who had suggested that eligibility would be based on how good
    a case we could make for Fisheries being important in our area.
    The estimated money available for lowland Scotland is £5.3M
    over the life of the programme from the European Fishing Fund
    – Axis 4. AMK advised although there is little clarity on Inland
    fishing rules at present, LEADER has proven skills in community
    engagement This would be excellent for fisheries in our
    LEADER area.


5   Communication

    Email

    AMK referred to the paper circulated with the LAG papers
    regarding reimbursing community members LAG costs. The
    LAG discussed the pros and cons of doing this, agreeing that
    this should be available for all community LAG members who
    could not access the internet through their work. There was no
    obligation to claim this cost, but AMK reminded everyone that it This Motion
    was important for inclusion and equality reasons that the LAG approved
    didn‟t become the preserve of those who do not need to claim unanimously
    for expenses. When claiming for these costs, LAG members will
    be expected to commit to checking their email and the LAGs
    website and forum on a regular basis. The motion was
    approved unanimously.
                                                                      Action: AMK
    The members also asked AMK to go back to the Managing
    Authority to reconsider their view on claiming for ink cartridges
    and paper.

    LMacA arrived at the meeting




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Website

DF then raised the issue of returning score sheets by LAG
members on time as he was concerned that a lot of unnecesary
staff time was being used, chasing up members who did not
observe the scoring sheets‟ deadlines. (It was also unfair on
applicants so he encourged the members to adhere to the
timetables.

DT asked if the website could be adapted to allow scoring Action:
sheets to be submitted straight from the website. AMK said that SD/AMK
the website company would be asked if this could be done but it
was likely that this would incur additional costs, so would run this
by the LAG before going ahead.

The question was raised why the technical assessments were
not put onto the website.        AMK explained that technical
assessments are only sent to the members who have no interest
in any particular project and the website was not sophisticated
enough to allow individual members access to some files and
not to others, so the simplest solution was to email the technical
assessments.

LG arrived at the meeting


Publicity

AMK advised the LAG that press releases were sent out
following the last LAG meeting which had been taken up by a
number of local papers. AMK asked the members for their help
in keeping their eyes peeled for where they saw LEADER Action: All
related articles as it wasn‟t always possible to keep track of all
the articles published, especially when projects were also putting
out their own press releases.
                                                                   Action:
AMK reminded the LAG that FVL LEADER now has a regular LmacA
slot in "Stirling Eye”, which is a quarterly publication for
businesses published by Stirling Council‟s Economic
Development.                                                       Action:
                                                                   AMK/GE
LMcA advised that Falkirk Council publish the “Falkirk Council
News” on a quarterly basis and would check if FVL LEADER
could get a regular slot in there. LMcA is to come back to AMK
with a contact within Falkirk Council.
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    AMK to contact GE to find out if Clackmannanshire Council has
    a regular publication that can be used by the LAG.

6   Proposed Action 2 Procedure with Argyll LAG

    AMK referred to the Proposal for Action 2 Procedures paper,
    which was posted with the LAG papers prior to the meeting.
    AMK explained that the aim was to ensure that the application
    and claiming process was as painless as possible for joint
    projects. The proposal was to trial a new process when there
    was a joint project between Argyll and FVL, involving a separate
    meeting of the two LAGs which would have devolved
    responsibility to make the decision whether or not to fund the
    project. This would not be an exclusive group but any LAG
    member from each LAG could attend, with a minimum
    attendance of three members from each LAG and no maximum
    with each member having an individual voice. This would ensure
    neither LAG loses its autonomy. MStone asked what would
    happen if still no consensus was reached.

    There was a concern from the LAG that funding could end up
    more weighted towards the other LEADER area. AMK advised
    that that would be a reason for ensuring that as many FVL
    members attended as possible, but that was also the reason
    why it was being suggested as a trial only in the first instance –
    to see whether things like this would be an issue or not.

    It was suggested that the use of video conferencing could be
    arranged between the two LAGs so that as many LAG members
    as possible could take part in the discussion.

    AMK advised that the existing scoring sheets will be used and
    absent LAG members scores and opinions would still be
    incorporated into the discussion.
                                                                 Procedure
    The LAG had a show of hands in agreement to the above and it Agreed
    was agreed to trial the procedure and then review it.
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    Presentation by GG & PS – Rural Leadership Programme

    GG was not able to attend today however PS offered to say a
    few words about the Programme.

    PS praised the Rural Leadership Programme and advised that
    he felt it was very worth while attending. On the Programme,
    they have received a complete overview of the rural economy,
    insight into foresters, farmers and the tourism industry and
    „Dynamic Earth‟. PS told the LAG that Rob Wainright was a
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     guest speaker on the Programme. Rob Wainright was a former
     rugby player for Scotland who was capped 37 times and who
     captained the Scotland Team. He was also a doctor and took a
     commission in the Royal Army Medical Corps.

     He is now a farmer and also runs a bed & breakfast business
     with his wife on the Isle of Coll in The Hebrides. PS said that
     they had also had visits to Westminster, Brussels and Scottish
     Parliament to get a good understanding of the governance
     issues in rural development.

     DT attended the Programme last year and agreed with PS that it
     was very worthwhile and came away with the slogan “think
     global – act local”, which she has adopted to her life-style since.

     The final day is 9 June (tomorrow) and PS encouraged other
     LAG members to consider attending next year.

8    Liaison with Partners

     DF advised that himself, GG, PS and AMK had met with
     VisitScotland recently in Edinburgh. They are still to meet with
     Scottish Natural Heritage, Scottish Enterprise and the local
     authorities so that they are clear what LEADER is and explore
     any particular ideas they may have for funding. DF and PS both
     said that they felt the meetings were beneficial.

9    Sub-Group Reports – Think Tank

     SW advised that following the Think Tank meeting, she has now
     arranged a meeting with community workers for 2 July with the Action:
     four councils and CVS to explore possible area wide project SW/AMK/
     ideas. SW will also be meeting with youth workers after the ThinkTank
     summer with the same objective in mind.

     SW advised that the ThinkTank had also discussed evaluating
     applicants‟ experiences of applying to FVL LEADER and LMacA
     had offered the services of the External Funding Unit at Falkirk
     Council to receive and analyse feedback forms which will be
     agreed by the ThinkTank. The feedback form needs to be Action:
     drafted and discussed first, which the LEADER staff team had AMK/SW/SD
     agreed to do, but had not yet had time to.


10   Progress Report

     The Progress Report had been circulated prior to the meeting
     and questions were invited.


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AMK brought two projects to the attention of the LAG. Firstly,
Fallin Community Re-Use Centre had been in contact with AMK
regarding changing its application and was due to meet with her
on 10 June.

AMK advised that as it looked like the applicant would be
changing the intervention rate and the location of the project, the
project would need to be recirculated to the LAG for approval. Action: AMK
AMK asked the LAG if they would be happy for the revised
proposal to be circulated and agreed outwith the LAG meeting.
This was agreed.

Secondly, AMK said she wanted to make the LAG aware of
concerns over Dunblane Development Trust‟s likelihood of
completing their project according to their application and
significantly within the timescale set by their lottery application.
AMK also made the LAG aware of the detrimental local media
coverage of DDT and their match funder which was a property
development group, although this did not reflect on the project
itself or their LEADER funding. It was also now unclear where
their match funding was coming from.

LG advised that despite this, the Trust had been successful with
their application to the Town Centre Regeneration Fund for the
building phase of the project.

IW explained that she was having extreme difficulty getting the
financial information required for claims from DDT, having now
met with several different people from the Trust, each promising
to send in the required information, but then moving on. She
had last met with DDT on 24 April who intimated then that a
claim would be imminent. IW emailed them on 11 May but has
not received a response yet.

The LAG thanked AMK and IW for making them aware, but felt
no further action was yet required.


Project Allocations Update

AMK referred to the paper which was included with the LAG
papers and asked if there were any questions regarding the
figures of allocated funds. There were no questions. To date,
£636,048 has been committed to Action 1 projects and £87,988
to Action 2 project.

Project Enquiry Update

AMK referred to the enquiry sheet, which was included with the
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LAG papers posted on the website. To date there have been
over one hundred enquiries, all of which have been followed up
and dealt with. There were no questions from the LAG.


New Project Applications


Drymen Church – Time to Build Project

SW presented the LAG with this application.

The LAG extensively discussed this project at the March LAG
meeting. At that time, it was noted that a project such as this is
very difficult to keep on track without a Business Plan and the
decision had been to defer the application until a business plan
was produced.

The business plan is now complete and the application has been
re-submitted to this LAG meeting.

It was noted that the applicant had received grant funding a
number of years ago for the old church hall, and it was also
noted that the application related to a church building albeit for
community use – and costs had been assigned to reflect this.

The ensuing discussion led to agreement that most of the
proposed activities were not religious activities but ones that
would benefit the whole community, and using the Church
building in this way was an innovative use of the building.

After discussion, it was agreed that this application should be
approved with specific conditions, namely that the hall
management group is to include representatives of non-Church
related users and after the build stage of the project they are to
submit a report on the usage of the facility.                      Approved
                                                                   with specific
Approved with specific Conditions.                                 conditions


Carron Valley Rural Skills Project – The Wise Group.

MStrachan and LG left the room.

SD presented this reworked application from a previous
submission which was rejected in June 2008.

 The project was substantially reduced from the previous
submission following feedback from the LAG and was now an
                                                                          8
Action 2 project with Kelvin LAG.



This project aims to provide training, qualifications and work
experience for unemployed people from the FVL and Kelvin rural
area and preparing them for employment with a key potential
permanent employer being the FCS. The Wise Group offer a
good structure and are well connected to the industry. The
project will also deliver a significant amount of environmental
improvements, footpaths, picnic areas etc with quality and
sustainability which is most important to the 6 – 9 trainees, who
undergo 26 weeks of training and gain recognised qualifications.

The LAG extensively discussed the project as it was recognised
that this was an expensive project. Concerns were raised at the
amount of money this project was requiring for the relatively
small number of trainees. It was also felt that the FCS
contribution of only £3K didn‟t demonstrate strong support from
them, even though the project was on their land and they were
likely to benefit from the better skilled trainees. There was also
disappointment expressed that the project didn‟t mention linking
with schools, or have some other more innovative angle.

The project was rejected on the grounds of poor value for money
– project is expensive for the number of trainees. If the number
of trainees could be increased for that cost then the LAG would
re-consider. Also, the LAG would like to see the project working
with local schools with a view to recruiting trainees. The
question was also raised over whether project was innovative.

This project was rejected.                                           Rejected


MStrachan returned to the room.

Building the team for, Art in the Park – Mugdock Makkers

SW presented this application to the LAG.

Mugdock Makkers is a collective of around 25 craft-workers
formed in 2007 to assist in the promotion and sale of locally
made and produced craft work. Just over a year ago, they
started operating a gallery in Mugdock Country Park where
locally made goods can be seen and sold.                Practical
demonstrations are also undertaken on a regular basis. This
particular project aims to support the development of a business
plan, which will guide their promotion and marketing activities
and help build the team spirit and collective thinking which will
                                                                           9
support the group‟s future sustainability.

The applicants wish to expand the opportunities to host
exhibitions and craft fairs increasing the number of opportunities
for local artists to sell and display their products.

After extensive discussion by the LAG, some of whom had been
into the gallery and had been impressed, it was agreed that this
was a sensible way forward for the group. The LAG noted how
a number of groups seem to see business planning as a Approved
consensus building tool for their respective organisations.      with
                                                                 Standard
The application was approved with standard conditions            Conditions




STEP Forth – ((Skinflats Tidal Exchange Project) Project –
RSPB

DR left the room.

SD presented this Application to the LAG.

The proposed regulated tidal exchange project at RSPB
Scotland‟s Skinflats Nature Reserve in Falkirk will be the first of
its kind in Scotland and will provide benefits in the form of
habitat creation, flood alleviation, access, recreation and
education.

The LAG discussed this application as they felt it was very
innovative, although they were aware it had been under
discussion for a number of years. The LAG also noted that the
interesting part from the community perspective was Phase 2,
but could not happen until Phase 1 was completed, and it was
Phase 1 that was the hardest part to find funding for.

The LAG and decided to approve with a recommendation that
RSPB should link with the schools in the area and particularly
Larbert, Grangemouth and Kincardine Schools.

The applicaton was Approved with Specific Conditions                  Approved
                                                                      with Specific
DR returned to the meeting                                            Conditions

AOCB

In the Communities Along the Carron Project, there is an
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exhibition of art work from the local primary schools being held
in the Delta Studios in Larbert and LAG members are invited to
a private viewing between 7.30 and 9.30 on 12 June.

If anyone could attend to represent the LAG, could they let AMK
know. IH advised that he would be attending anyway, so would
be happy to represent the LAG. This was agreed.

AMK advised that she has some spare booklets on Rural
Funding and if any LAG member would like a copy, they are to
let her know.


DF advised that IW and himself had attended the Opening of the
caving facility at Barrwood Trust, along with approximately 400
people, mainly children from the scouting fraternities, on
Saturday 5th June. Both were very enthused at the new caving
facilities and photos will be available on the website soon.



Date of Next Meeting

The date of the next meeting is 15 September at 2pm at
Mugdock Country Park.

Following this meeting, our December meeting is on 16 th
December, venue to be confirmed but likely to be in West
Dunbartonshire.




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