Cabinet members have approved a report that sets out the revised process Barnsley Council will now follow as part of its Community Asset Transfer (CAT) Policy. The revised policy supports the council’s aims, objectives and values around community need, transparency and sustainability.
The existing policy has been revised to focus on community empowerment and sets out a clear process for community groups when applying for a CAT. Following the recommendations made by the Scrutiny Task and Finish Group, it states how organisations need to be focused on the commitment to maintain a building and how the council can support organisations in their application.
There is a clear five-stage process in making an application, starting with submitting an interest in land or property, through to completing the legal agreements. Monitoring the results and being able to demonstrate the social and economic benefits that the specific CAT will provide are also included.
The council has been letting/transferring land and buildings, such as community halls, sports facilities and open spaces to voluntary and community groups for many years. All these occasions have been dealt with following the existing CAT. This is not a legal requirement, but a voluntary process at the discretion of the council.
Cllr Roy Miller, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place, said: “We are committed to working with community groups and local people to make sure Community Asset Transfer in Barnsley is successful.
“We want to encourage communities to make the best use of assets and help them to have the best chance of securing long-term sustainability. This can be done through sharing the use of buildings and making sure assets benefit as many members of the local community as possible.”
All applications for CAT will be determined on a case-by-case basis. The council will try to meet both the requirements of applicants and their funders wherever possible.
More information on assets of community value can be found on the council's website.
The report can be read in full here.
This news is linked to Town Spirit. We want to work better together. If everyone in Barnsley does just one thing, together we can make our borough a more welcoming place where people want to live, work and visit.