Decision details

DEBT RESCUE AND MONEY ADVICE - CREDIT UNION SUPPORT

Decision Maker: County Council Local Committee for Carlisle

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No

Decisions:

(Mr J Mallinson and Mrs H M Bradley left the room for this item having declared a personal and prejudicial interest

 

The Committee received a presentation from  Mr T Denny, .a Regional Liaise Officer for the England Illegal Money Lending Team. Mr Denny covered areas of the North West,  and worked in partnership with Cumbria Trading Standards with a remit to prosecute loan sharks and to support victims.

 

The presentation covered loan shark practices; partnership working with Trading Standards in Cumbria; activities and future actions which included closer working with Credit Unions.  Achievements nationally had included:-   

 

  • Identification of over 2000 illegal money lenders
  • Writing of £38.8 million worth of illegal debts
  • More than 200 prosecutions, leading to custodial  sentences in excess of 128 years (plus an indefinite sentence)
  • Helping over 18,000 victims of loan sharks
  • Over £1.5 million in cash seized.

 

5 wards had been identified in Cumbria, including the ward of Upperby in Carlisle,  where specific problems had been identified with illegal money lending - but these were not necessarily the only areas where there were problems.

 

The Committee found the presentation very informative,  particularly the identification of areas that had the most serious problems. The Committee wished to do as much as possible to prevent illegal money lending and ensure people were aware of the help available. The Chair thanked Mr Denny for his presentation and for the ongoing work which was crucial.

 

The Committee then considered the report which outlined the discussions of the Task and Finish Group established by the Committee to review the funding opportunities and projects supported by the Local Committee through the Debt Rescue and Money Advice (DRAMA) funding for 2011/12.

 

As a result of its work, the Task and Finish Group were recommending further investment of £8,500 be made available to the Carlisle and District Credit Union to fund the updating of the web site and enhancement to enable members to check account balances, transfer funds, make direct payments of loans, download forms and access a loan calculator.

 

The report also listed other issues discussed by the Task and Finish Group and which could be progressed in the future.  Some Members considered the promotion of Credit Unions in rural areas to be a priority.

 

RESOLVED,       that

 

                              (1)    the work and considerations of the Task and Finish Group be noted;

 

                              (2)    an allocation of £8,500 be approved for Carlisle and District Credit Union to enable the development and enhancement of the web site as detailed in the report;

 

                              (3)    it be noted that officers have agreed to progress other ideas discussed by the Task and Finish Group as listed in paragraph 4.7 of the report.

Publication date: 31/01/2012

Date of decision: 25/01/2012

Decided at meeting: 25/01/2012 - County Council Local Committee for Carlisle

Accompanying Documents: