Hertfordshire County Council has taken steps to make sure funding is available to community groups seeking to support their area during the coronavirus outbreak.

Every year councillors are allocated £10,000 for local projects that promote the social, economic or environmental wellbeing of their local area.

Bids for the 2019-2020 financial year have already closed – and were not yet due to open again.

But the council has taken steps to ensure that local groups and organisations who need support for activities relating to Covid-19 can bid straight away.

The move was highlighted on Monday, March 23 when the council’s cabinet considered the council’s response to the coronavirus.

Leader of the council Cllr David Williams said: “Every one of the 78 Hertfordshire county councillors has a budget of £10,000 that they can assign to support various projects.

“And I know from discussions with a number of members that there local groups who  would welcome access to that funding – and so I am delighted that we have been able to bring forward next year’s scheme to allow for applications immediately.”

Deputy executive member for education, libraries and localism Cllr Mark Mills-Bishop said that the ‘members locality budgets’ would be available for local groups seeking funding for projects to combat the effects of the virus.

And he said: “I would urge any community group that is wanting to avail themselves of that to do so.”

The normal requirements for those seeking funding though ‘members locality budget’ funding will apply.

That means grants can only be paid to an organisation that is either a limited company, a registered charity, an organisation with a recognised legal status or an unincorporated association with its own bank account.

Organisations that are awarded a grant will be asked to keep receipts and invoices wand to supply a brief evaluation of their project.

In the first instance any group wishing to apply for funding should contact their local county councillor.