THE Larne Poor Coal Fund will not be made available to residents of the borough this winter.
The charitable trust, operated by Larne Borough Council over many years to help small numbers of local people with winter fuel costs, did not pay out last year after the council decided to suspend the issue of vouchers. The fund, which is invested with the NI Central Investment Fund for Charities, is dependant on annual dividends and these have decreased in value in recent years.
And the local authority has now decided that the next payment of the fund will be made in autumn 2013, rather than this winter as had been previously considered.
The trust’s capital is invested with the NI Central Investment Fund for Charities, and the council has been instructed that it can draw down and spend the capital of the fund – a total of about £5,000 – as opposed to just the dividends.
The council has now resolved to place an advert in its Portview magazine this spring, seeking expressions of interest for the remainder of the fund.
Applications will be limited to those in receipt of guaranteed pension credit. Funds distributed on a first-come-first-served basis.