COMMUNITY groups in the town may soon be able to claim a share of an £87,000 pot made available through the New Homes Bonus Scheme.
If approved by Bromsgrove District Council’s Cabinet, in October, various community organisations in villages including Alvechurch, Belbroughton, Catshill, Cofton Hackett and Hagley will be able to claim boosts ranging from £1,100 to £15,000.
Central Government pays New Homes Bonus money to local councils for every new home built in its area.
The intention of the national scheme is to encourage councils to pass some of the money to communities affected by new developments.
Previously Bromsgrove District Council had retained the money in its budget rather than pass it on to communities.
But, after Hagley Residents Action Group (HRAG) launched a petition in 2013, signed by 1,429 people, asking the council to pass on the money it agreed to change its policy.
The New Homes Bonus Panel was then set up and community groups were invited from across the area to make bids.
Peter Rowbottom, member of HRAG and lead petitioner of the campaign, said it was excellent news as dozens of groups from across the district were set to benefit to the tune of thousands of pounds, following the panel’s recommendations.
“I would like to thank the 1,400 or so signatures to the original petition, various parish councils for lending their support to the campaign and also Hagley district, councillors Steve Colella and Rachel Jenkins who advised the Hagley groups bidding for the money.”
The council has, for this year only, established the scheme for 2015/16 for communities affected by new housing developments. The amount passed on in future will be reviewed yearly.
Bromsgrove District Council leader, Coun Margaret Sherrey, said: “Our communities are important to this council and we have put these recommendations forward as we believe they will benefit our local residents.”