We have received a request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 for the following:
I wish to request the following information under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, relating to the procedure for approving applications from voluntary sector organisations for the ‘Community Action Against Crime: Innovation Fund’:
1.The date on which Home Office personnel became aware that the Year 2 funding was over-spent and that this would affect the allocation of funding to projects.
2. Any correspondence and documents circulated internally at the Home Office relating to the Year 2 overspend and the Home Office’s plans for dealing with this issue.
3. The dates when approved projects were sent to the relevant Minister for sign-off.
4. The methodology for sending ‘batches’ of projects to the Minister - eg whether it was by national ranking, geographical area, alphabetical order etc.
5. Which projects were asked to move the entirety of their spending into Year 1 to compensate for the Year 2 overspend, and where those projects ranked nationally in terms of the marks given to them at assessment.
6. Which projects were asked to re-profile their spending between Year 1 and Year 2 of the programme, and where those projects ranked.
We released the following information on: 28 Febuary 2012
The CAAC Innovation Fund was launched on 5 September 2011 for the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector (VCSE) to develop new ways of working in local communities to cut crime and improve community safety. The Fund is worth £10million over two years. Originally £5million was available for Year1 and £5million set aside for Year 2. 1627 applications were received from organisations across England and 59 from Wales. The total grant request for England was £65,860,507 and for Wales was £3,195,250. The Fund is managed by an external organisation, the Community Development Foundation (CDF), who oversaw the application and assessment process. All grant applications were assessed by local panels made up of community leaders and funders.
Home Office Officials monitored the balance of Year 1 and Year 2 funding throughout the assessment process. It became apparent in November 2011 that Year 2 funding was being allocated more quickly than Year 1 funding. This was because the vast majority of organisations were requesting more money for Year 2 than for Year 1. However, Treasury rules prevent any flexibility which might have allowed some Year 1 money to be carried over to Year 2. In January 2012 all money had been allocated to Year 2 funding. The Home Office therefore undertook a piece of work to look at how money could be re-allocated to ensure that there was the potential to fund as many organisations as possible. At no stage did Year 2 funding become overspent.
Attached all internal Home Office correspondence and documents which refer to discussion of the potential full allocation of Year 2 funding and the Home Office’s plans for dealing with the issue.
The approved projects were sent to the Minister for sign-off in four tranches. Thirty-two projects were sent on 13 December 2011, 20 projects on 15 December 2011, 99 projects on 6 January 2012 and 119 projects on 2 February 2012.
The tranches of projects were sent to the Minister on a rolling basis. As they were received from CDF following success at the external panel stage, they were assessed internally and forwarded to the Minister for approval. Applications were not grouped by geography, theme or any other category.
When it became apparent that the money for Year 2 was being allocated more quickly than Year 1, Home Office officials worked with CDF to look at how money could be reallocated to ensure that there was the potential to fund as many organisations as possible. Sixty projects were asked if they would be willing to move the entirety of their funding to Year 1. Of these, 56 responded and were eventually funded. Although applications to the CAACIF were assessed and scored by local panels against specified criteria, they were not ranked in any order and therefore there was no ranking applied to these projects. The list of successful projects is due to be published shortly.
As part of this piece of work it was also considered appropriate to ask projects which had already passed the panel stage to re-profile their spending in order to enable other projects to also receive funding. All the projects from the first three tranches were asked if they would be willing to re-profile their spending - 52 projects which had already received grant letters and 99 projects which had received ministerial approval but had not yet completed the due-diligence process. This enabled the Home Office to also ask an additional 63 projects which we hoped to fund, providing that the re-phasing of budgets allowed more spend in Year 2. As stated above, there was no ranking applied to these projects.
Date: Wed Jun 13 10:33:11 BST 2012
In response to a Freedom of Information request about the procedure for approving applications from voluntary sector organisations to the Community Action Against Crime: Innovation Fund.