Funding for community projects agreed
Councillors in Barnet have approved nearly £79million of funding for projects due to take place over the next five years.
The money will be used to fund infrastructure such as roads, recreation facilities, open space and CCTV.
It will be raised through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) - a charge imposed by local authorities on developments to fund infrastructure in their area.
Barnet Council stands to benefit from increased CIL revenue after councillors agreed to raise some of the charges during a meeting of the policy and resources committee in May.
Most of the money - £26.6m - has been earmarked for parks and open spaces, including a sports hub at West Hendon Playing Fields. A further £23.5m is expected to go to town centre projects in areas such as North Finchley, Edgware, Colindale and Chipping Barnet.
Transport schemes are in line for £22m, with £1m allocated to create healthier routes to schools. Air quality monitoring stations are set for investment of £27,000. A plan to boost CCTV infrastructure and coverage stands to benefit from £300,000.
The proposed use of the £79m was agreed by councillors during a meeting of the policy and resources committee on Tuesday, 20th July. During the meeting, Labour’s Geof Cooke questioned the use of £16m earmarked for a new waste depot site, which will not be funded using CIL money. A council officer revealed the project was to create a single depot, which would allow the authority to save money.
But Cllr Cooke said the council previously had a single depot in Mill Hill, which it sold off and then spent money on building a new depot in Oakleigh Road, New Southgate, as well as paying Harrow Council to operate from one of their facilities.
Council leader and committee chairman Dan Thomas said the depot in Mill Hill had been used to provide homes, while fellow Conservative committee member Peter Zinkin said the authority had been able to acquire land around the Oakleigh Road site that would allow it to “create something there” but did not provide further details.
Following the debate, the committee voted unanimously to agree the CIL funding.