At the Partnership Board meeting in February, New Deal Executive Manager Ann Allen stressed that “Absolutely no money has gone missing.” However, it’s clear New Deal were overspending for years and nobody was keeping track of the money.
In 2006/7 New Deal overspent by around £1.9 million – at the time of the work on Sorby House and the Vestry Hall. In 2007/8, New Deal spent a further £700,000 more than what they were told by Government they could spend. All New Deal’s planning in the last 12 months was done without realising they were more than £2million overspent.
No one knew what had been spent
While the Government funds New Deal through the Council, it’s clear neither the Government nor the Council were keeping track of what they were giving New Deal.
For the final two years New Deal had also planned to spend a further £2million beyond the original £52million. John Clark, then Chief Executive told the Board he expected Burngreave to get extra money from the Government, but it’s now clear he had no commitment in writing.
New Deal realised at the end of 2008 they would not receive more than £52million and started to make cuts in their plans. But this was not enough to prevent the drastic cuts needed in February when they realised they were already overspent.
New Deal has around £480,000 in the bank, and can expect the remaining £642,902 of the £52 million. Their liabilities are around £800,000, including redundancy payments and unpaid pension contributions. This leaves only around £300,000 for the next 2 years. New Deal has decided to use this for its buildings.
Chair of New Deal Ronnie Lewin told the Messenger
“Everyone is culpable, the Board, the Council and Government office. But I can see the outcomes of New Deal – If the money hadn’t come here I don’t know what would have happened to this area. There’s been real change because of New Deal.