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Government Grant funding
CS Treasurer Mac McKenzie presents a history of grant awards made to the association from mid 1970s to present day.
Initially it was the Scottish Office Education Department that dealt with any grants received by Chess Scotland or the Scottish Chess Association as it was then. Originally any grants received were to assist with the cost of players taking part in international events and application had to be made for each event with the amounts ranging from £40 to just over £1000. That was 35 years ago in 1976.
By 1979 the grant had changed to a fixed annual amount, received quarterly on receipt of an application each quarter showing how the previous amount had been spent. The purpose was still to assist with the Association’s costs of taking part in international competitions and in the 1979-80 season the total grant received was £4000.
The following year the Association received an additional grant amounting to £1565 to assist with the administrative costs. At this time the grants accounted for 66% of the Association’s total income. These grants continued over the years with annual increases until season 1986-87 when the total of the two grants amounted to £9000.
At the start of season 1987-88 the SED suddenly, and without warning, withdrew the international grant. Although the administration grant continued this meant that the Association’s international grant was cut from £5775 to zero. Despite representations the Department was adamant that the international grant couldn’t be re-instated. Letters were sent to all Scottish MPs seeking their support to have the grant re-instated and a meeting took place with the Secretary of State to ask for his assistance. The immediate outcome from all this effort was that the Association was allowed to use some of the administration grant that year to assist with travel costs but there was to be no additional money.
There was no let-up the following season when the Department not only confirmed there would be no international Grant but neither would there be any increase in the Administration Grant. As the Chess Olympiad was taking place the assistance of the Secretary of State and the Minister of Education were sought and finally the SED relented and agreed to give a grant of £4300 to assist with the costs of the Olympiad and the World Junior Championships. However the re-instalment of the international grant lasted only for one season and in season 1989-90 there was only administration grant.
For season 1990-91 the grant was increased by £3000 making the total £9500 but the following year the Scottish Office advised that it was their intention to withdraw the grant in stages and to this end the grant was reduced back to £6500. Fortunately they later advised they had decided to reverse their decision to withdraw grant support. Not only that they also advised that they were willing to include a supplement of £4000 expressly for the purpose of assisting with the burden of the Olympiad costs due to the event being in the Philippines. This was the largest income in grants ever received and amounted to £11000. However this was the last time a grant for international expenditure was ever received.
The following year the total grant was £7500 and all grants received from now on were to offset the Association’s administrative costs. The next year the grant was increased by £1300 only to be reduced again in 1995-96 by £950. In 1997 an additional one-off grant was obtained for internet training.
By 2000 the grant came under the Scottish Executive Education Department and became known as the Headquarters Grant. For the next seven years the grant increased by a few hundred each year until 2007. That year the Scottish Executive offered a grant of £31,800 to cover three financial years, £10600 per year. This was to support the core costs of Chess Scotland and was based on the achievements of the organisation being met. By 2009 it was the Scottish Government, Children, Young People and Social Care Directorate Positive Futures Division with the grant coming from the Unified Voluntary Sector Fund. We continue to receive this grant although there have been no increases in the amount due to financial restrictions. Annual applications for the grant are required.
In addition to the grant applications two reports require to be submitted, one after six months and the other at the end of the year. This allows the Department to monitor our progress and show how the funds are being spent. In addition the Department also receive copies of the Association’s audited accounts. Nowadays the grant accounts for approximately 27% of Chess Scotland’s income.
Mac McKenzie (September 2011)
Posted on: 22-04-2013