Issue details

Social Fund Localisation - 12/01939

The DWP currently runs a discretionary scheme of Community Care Grants and Crisis Loans which are part of the Social Fund. From April 2013 these schemes will cease and part of the funding transferred to local authorities (upper tier in two-tier authorities) so that they can design their own local schemes to meet the need in their areas. Decisions will be needed on the following:

1. How the devolved budget is to be used within Kent.
2. How the local scheme/s should operate.
3. The preferred delivery model including any procurement issues

How the decision relates to BS4K and Corporate Objectives

The reform fits with Ambition 2 “To Tackle Disadvantage” and gives Kent an opportunity to try to deal with the need in a more effective way. The reform will impact on a much wider group of people than currently access Children’s Social Services and Adult Social Services. Developing an effective scheme can, therefore, also play an important role in the preventative and early intervention strategies of these services.

Impact/costs and risks of proposed decision

1. The spend on the Social Fund is being driven down in advance of the transfer. There is a danger, therefore, that the budget will be insufficient for demand particularly in the current economic climate and in the context of wider benefit cuts.

2. If an effective replacement scheme is not developed there is likely to be a serious gap in provision of support to vulnerable people.

3. Risks associated with taking on a devolved responsibility.

Decision type: Key

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Notice of proposed decision first published: 31/12/2012

Decision due: November 2012 by Cabinet Member for Customer & Communities

Department: Customer & Communities Directorate

Contact: Christine Grosskopf, Policy Manager Email:

Consultation process


Notify all Members of the Council:  YES



No extra specific legal duty as presently understood.

Aims and level(s) of consultation (KCC consultation levels attached)

Consultation with key partners is taking place to raise awareness of the changes and to inform the decision on options for the scheme and its delivery.

Key consultee groups

To date: district/borough councils; non-statutory and voluntary organisataions; relevant KCC staff.

Start and finish dates of consultation.

Informal – December 2011 to date. Formal – to be confirmed.

Equalities Impact Assessment included in the consultation documentation. Please state where this can be found.

To be confirmed.

Date of publication of consultation outcomes and updated Equalities Impact Assessment

To be confirmed.

Has the matter already been discussed by a Cabinet Committee? If not when will be it discussed by the Cabinet Committee and the date of the meeting

Not yet discussed by a Customer and CommunitiesCommittee; date to be confirmed.


Is the matter referred to in your Business Plan or Medium Term Capital Programme?  NO


Which Members and electoral Divisions are affected by this proposed decision? Is it All Members?

Yes – all Members


Financial implications: Christine Grosskopf, Business Strategy, KCC Phone: 01622 696611 (7000 6611). Email:

Legal implications: 12/01939

Equalities implications: This needs to be a Key Decision due to the potential impact on the community and the fact that the budget exceeds £1 million per year.