On the morning of Tuesday 28 September we sent an email entitled “Funding of AfSL pulled – information for publication” to Manchester City Council –
“our spies tell us that Manchester City Council has pulled all of its funding from “Action for Sustainable Living”. Obviously we will be running a story in Manchester Climate Fortnightly, and we want to make sure that all voices – and facts – are heard.
Could you please supply answers to the following;
when was it decided to pull the funding?
what were the reasons for this decision?
is this decision a reflection of dissatisfaction with the work AfSL was
given the timing – shortly before the November 30th Stakeholder conference towards which AfSL is contributing ‘fringe events’- was a delay in pulling the funding considered? If not, why not. If so, what reason was given for rejecting it?
what consultation was entered into with AfSL?
what other ‘green’ organisations have had their funding pulled?
how much money has this decision saved?
what alternative means to accomplish the work that AfSL was being tasked with performing for the Council will be implemented (by whom? at what cost)
will any of the money saved be available for any other groups?
is there anything else you’d care to add?”
Without objecting to the word “pulled” in either the email title or the body of the message, the Council agreed to give a statement by Friday 1st October
On Friday afternoon, MCFly (not “McFly”, btw) received this statement from CMC, I mean, MCC. We print it in full, complete with spelling mistakes. Comments in [square brackets] are ours.
“Dear Editor, McFly,
Manchester City Council notes that you have published AfSL’s statement about some of their project funding from the Council coming to an end. This AfSL statement is a true and fair summary of the situation; regretably, this cannot be said of the introduction to your article.
For the avoidance of doubt, Manchester City Council has not made any cuts in funding to any environmental organisation this financial year. All agreed offers of funding have been and will be honoured and this has never been in question. The time-limited project funding for a number of projects, including some run by AfSL, has come to an end, and these projects are now in the process of being completed.
The completion of these projects is not in any way connected to seperate requests for financial support for stakeholder events related to Manchester- A Certain Future: these have been favourably received and the Council is in discussion with the organisations concerned.
[Fine, but that is not a question we asked though. I suppose it comes under ‘anything else you care to add’?]
Executive Member for the Environment, Councillor Nigel Murphy commented “The Council values the work of environmental community organsiations, including AfSL, views them as partners and recognises that they have a very important part to play in guiding and helping neighbourhoods and residents to realise the opportunities of a low carbon future for our city.”
[Well, that’s an interesting way of valuing the work. When I get my P45, doubtless I will be told that my work was ‘valued’]
There are still a host of unanswered questions, including “which other organisations have had their projects’ funding cu… I mean, discontinued.”
And “how much money has this decision saved?”
And “what alternative means to accomplish the work that AfSL was being tasked with performing for the Council will be implemented (by whom? at what cost)
And “will any of the money saved be available for any other groups?”