The funding we receive from Fred Olsen Renewables, the operators of the Crystal Rig windfarms amount to around £80,000 a year, index-linked, for 25 years, a total of more than £2 million over the life of the scheme.
We have not received any proposals to amend the draft criteria and principles published previously, so we shall adopt these for the first two years and then review them to make sure they are still fit for purpose. They are set out below:-
The fund should benefit ALL people in East Lammermuir.
Investments/proposals should reflect the very different needs and profiles of the communities in East Lammermuir.
The funding should encourage self-reliance and schemes that involve communities working together, not simply buying in solutions.
The fund should bring everyone together and encourage cohesion between the different communities as well as within the communities themselves.
There would be potential to “roll up” years of funding together to allow larger schemes within communities, or for one community to access the fund disproportionately in a particular year and not at all for several future years. Over time, the distribution of the funding will be equitable across all areas of East Lammermuir.
Cross-community proposals that build cohesion across East Lammermuir will be welcomed.
The process and criteria for selecting schemes will be transparent, fair and well communicated.
Proposals offering match funding will be welcomed.
Proposals that will not be considered are ones that:-
Adversely affect, or work against the interests of, the windfarm or the owner of the land on which the windfarm is constructed or the Company or any of its subsidiary or related companies.
Adversely affect, or work – directly or indirectly – against, any form of renewable energy development.
Are sectarian or political in nature or could in any way be expected to create divisiveness in the local community.
Are the legal responsibility of any third party – and in particular of the local authority.
Are for private gain or result in a private/individual profit being made.
Are intended to make up for budget deficits elsewhere.
Have no public benefit for residents of East Lammermuir.
Have already taken place.
Adversely affect the natural environment.
In addition, funds will not be provided as loans for repayment.
A number of queries were raised by local residents after the draft criteria were published, and we attempt to address some of these here:-
First of all, we are looking to assess applications every six months or so. The first ’round’ of applications has now been considered and we expect to be able to publish the results of this after all the successful applicants have been notified. The closing date for the next ‘round’ of applications is the end of December 2012, and the standard application form can be downloaded from this web site on the page entitled “Apply for windfarm funding” .
We are keen at the outset to see the money shared as equally as possible among the four communities that make up the community council area. However, this will ultimately depend, of course, on the numbers of applications received from each of those areas.
The money is held by Fred Olsen Renewables on our behalf. We make recommendations to the Company as to which applications meet the criteria and should be funded. Any unspent part of one year’s allocation will not be lost, but will be carried forward into the following year.
We have decided that we should look sympathetically at any application for funding for a large project in one of the areas. For example, one of the village areas could perhaps be allocated all or most of the £80,000 in one year for a larger project, on the strict understanding that no further funding would be available for that village for the next three years, in order to allow the other villages to ‘catch up’.
A small proportion – about £12,000 each year – will still be ring fenced for small applications.
If you have any further queries about this funding, please contact any of your local community councillors or email us at ELCC.Comms@gmail.com.