Edmonton’s 154 community leagues will soon see a significant boost in their funding, thanks to the decision reached by Edmonton City Council earlier this week.
In response to a request by the EFCL, council has agreed to a 40% increase in the annual operating grants of community leagues, effective January 1. This has the potential to raise the average grant from about $11,000 to approximately $15,400, once criteria for funding has been finalized.
On a second front, city council has also agreed to create a capital fund for community leagues, to help them construct and repair all of their facilities on licensed land. This would include halls, rinks, tennis courts, basketball courts, parking lots, sidewalks – anything the leagues build on their licensed property (note: playgrounds are eligible for NPDP funding as they are on city parkland, not community league licensed land).
Initially, the EFCL asked for $3 million to be placed into this fund each year. Council decided to begin by stocking it with $1.5 million per year and will consider raising it next year.
Capital funds will be made available to the leagues on a 50/50 matching basis. Criteria for funding is still be developed, however, early indications suggest that a portion of the money will be set aside for small, medium and large scale projects. Dispersal of the funds is also expected to coincide with completion of a new tripartite license agreement, which describes how leagues are able to use the land they get from the city.
A joint committee of EFCL, community league and city staff hopes to complete work on both the grant criteria and license agreement early in the new year.