U-turn over CAB funds welcomed

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A ‘U-TURN’ on funding plans for Daventry’s Citizen Advice Bureau has been welcomed by board members.

Northampton Borough Council has withdrawn a bid for £240,000 of county council funding to provide the advice service to the whole county.

The Daventry Express reported last month that the council was in the running to take charge of the Advice Daventry service offered to people in the town who have problems with debt, welfare payments, housing or employment.

The move led to the local authority being accused of undermining the Community Law Service (CLS).

The CLS is a Northampton-based charity which already provides specialist advice and representation to people in Northamptonshire which has received funding from the county council for the past 29 years.

Advice Daventry board member Chris Over said: “This change of heart is really good news. I think the council decided to change its mind because of the pressure that was being applied.

“The service in Daventry is already very effective for the community, and this will hopefully enable that to continue.”

Borough councillor Brendan Glynane said the original bid had left the council open to accusations of a conflict of interest.

He said: “This is a U-turn by the borough council. I think it was ill-thought out from the start to put the third sector (the CLS) at risk.

“The conflict of interest was the most telling part. How could you get advice on the eviction process from the same council that was evicting you?

“It was also very hard to see how the borough council could have provided a service for the whole county.”