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Burnley council leader in fight over youth and community centre charges
THE LEADER of Burnley Council has called for plans to introduce charges for voluntary groups using youth and community centres to be put on hold.
Lancashire County Council is planning on introducing the charges, but Coun Julie Cooper said that the plans should be suspended.
She has filed a motion to go before councillors at the next full council meeting in Burnley on Thursday October 25. She said the move should be delayed “pending a comprehensive community engagement process that considers the impact and implications of this potentially damaging approach.
“This initial suspension of charges should last until at least March 31, which would allow time for various options to be considered for raising income from voluntary groups.”
Coun Couper says there shouled be ‘a fair system...that recognises issues like the impact of poverty on people’s ability to pay and the contribution voluntary groups make to the county council’s strategic objectives and operational targets.’
“We also call upon the county council to delay the introduction of any charges emerging from the engagement process until at least October 1 2013, because this will give unfunded voluntary groups the opportunity to develop their capacity to generate income without undermining the important work they carry out on a day to day basis,” the motion says.