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Charitable Trust, independent of Council

sic charitable trust

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#361 Colin

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Posted 24 April 2017 - 08:07 PM

I wonder just how many of the trustees of the Shetland Charitable Trust can define "Democracy", let alone spell it.

"Democracy" ?  It's all Greek to most of them..  :razz:


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#362 Ghostrider

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 01:22 PM

Oh, dear. What is that saying about self praise again.

 

An SIBC headline today.....

 

 

The trustees of the Shetland Charitable Trust have praised the achievements of the trust and organisations it helps fund in enhancing the quality of life in the islands.

 

The only time this despicable mob seem to open their collective gob these days is to try, and fail, to blow their own trumpet. What's up with them, guilty conscience or summat.


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#363 Urabug

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 03:02 PM

When the Scottish Government gets there greedy hands on those investments,there will be less to celebrate.  :ponders:

 

I guess we all gain in some way or another from the success of the "Charitable Trust",some of us far more than others. 

 

Where there is money involved there will never be full agreement on how it is spent or for that matter how it is invested .

 

I've come to the conclusion the powers that be will do what they want to do and that my dulcet tones like most others will be ignored, so I just sit back and let them get on with it. 

 

It does make sense though for the Charitable Trust to try and build up the funds and not go on a spend ,spend, spend spree,but I know folk who would rather see all this money spent.

 

We cannot have our cake and eat it.



#364 Urabug

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Posted 02 November 2017 - 08:16 PM

I was dismayed to hear on Radio Shetland tonight one of our councilors suggest that we should assist the Scottish Government by spending our charitable funds to support the Shetland Island Ferries.

 

Our political leader thank goodness has some sense and is very much against this.

 

I'm not sure how our" pot of gold "should be spent but spending it on anything that should be funded by government as has been done in the past is absolutely crazy.

 

We should only be spending about 75% of what this money earns annually thus allowing it to grow and provide something extra to the Shetland folk for years and years to come,not simply hand it over to the Scottish Government to fritter it all away.

 

If there was not so much opposition to some of the investment plans,the Charitable Trust might have been in a position to fund the ferries.


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#365 Property2017

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Posted 02 November 2017 - 08:49 PM

I personally think we should donate the reserve fund to charity , its nothing but a bone of contention and the people who are employed to look after it are not up to the job, get rid of it and get on with life like the rest of the UK.



#366 Urabug

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 12:11 AM

I personally think we should donate the reserve fund to charity , its nothing but a bone of contention and the people who are employed to look after it are not up to the job, get rid of it and get on with life like the rest of the UK.

It is already in a charity,a charity that has been a benefit to us all,in many different ways.

 

Yes,some have scored better than others,that will always be the case but there cannot be many sensible folk around that would give all their money while they are alive to charity and not keep some for a rainy day,so it is rather stupid to think that Shetland should give our reserves to another charity 

 

What problem would that solve?



#367 Ghostrider

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 12:26 AM

Shetland's oil money for dummies type explanation required here.

 

The Charitable Trust we kinda know about, its been through the press enough lately that's its skeletons have mostly all be well rattled. Its (theoretically at least) a self-sufficient (supposed to be) stand alone fund, entirely seperate from the SIC, run by a bunch of unevictable unmentionables.

 

The Reserve Fund is very much another type of beast though in my understanding. Correct me where I go wrong here, as I surely will, but is it or isn't it still a wholly SIC thing? Likewise, is or isn't the 'Reserve Fund' the same thing as the 'SIC's Reserves'? My understanding is that the Reserve Fund is SIC run, but that would seem at odds with it being a charity, or would it. So???? My understanding also is that the 'SIC's Reserves' is a wholly different bank account to the 'Reserve Fund'. and is most definitely wholly SIC controlled. Yes/no?


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#368 whalsa

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 08:09 AM

Shetland's oil money for dummies type explanation required here.

 

The Charitable Trust we kinda know about, its been through the press enough lately that's its skeletons have mostly all be well rattled. Its (theoretically at least) a self-sufficient (supposed to be) stand alone fund, entirely seperate from the SIC, run by a bunch of unevictable unmentionables.

 

The Reserve Fund is very much another type of beast though in my understanding. Correct me where I go wrong here, as I surely will, but is it or isn't it still a wholly SIC thing? Likewise, is or isn't the 'Reserve Fund' the same thing as the 'SIC's Reserves'? My understanding is that the Reserve Fund is SIC run, but that would seem at odds with it being a charity, or would it. So???? My understanding also is that the 'SIC's Reserves' is a wholly different bank account to the 'Reserve Fund'. and is most definitely wholly SIC controlled. Yes/no?

Pretty much. The Councils Reserves are entirely separate from the Charitable Trusts funds and is controlled directly by the SIC. Currently the return we receive from investing this money is used to fund services (in effect "topping up" the funding shortage from Holyrood). 

 

 

I was dismayed to hear on Radio Shetland tonight one of our councilors suggest that we should assist the Scottish Government by spending our charitable funds to support the Shetland Island Ferries.

 

Our political leader thank goodness has some sense and is very much against this.

 

I'm not sure how our" pot of gold "should be spent but spending it on anything that should be funded by government as has been done in the past is absolutely crazy.

 

We should only be spending about 75% of what this money earns annually thus allowing it to grow and provide something extra to the Shetland folk for years and years to come,not simply hand it over to the Scottish Government to fritter it all away.

 

If there was not so much opposition to some of the investment plans,the Charitable Trust might have been in a position to fund the ferries.

I agree with you. There is no way we should be using Shetland's oil funds to pay for services which the Scottish Government have already admitted they should be paying for. This disparity (between Orkney & Shetland and the rest of "Scotland's" islands) has also been highlighted recently by Audit Scotland. 


When people talk about spending the reserves (on tunnels, ferries, schools - whatever) they fail to realise that spending them would leave a massive hole in our budget and drastic service cuts would follow pretty much across the board. 


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#369 tiodylb17

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 02:34 PM

Its needs to be managed better


Edited by tiodylb17, 03 November 2017 - 02:34 PM.


#370 Urabug

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 04:38 PM

Yes the reserve fund and the Charitable fund are separate funds in their own right but I see them as one because if one goes almost certainly in my opinion the other will suffer the same fate

 

It seems the Scottish Government will do it's utmost to get us to spend this money rather than give us an extra penny towards essential services that is there responsibility. 

 

I hope our councilors have the ability to persuade the appropriate officials that our oil funds are not for indiscriminate use

 

If we need a penny on the tax to pay for new ferries ect  then so be it.

 

One thing for sure if peerie Nicola has her way we will not have to worry about how these funds are managed,their will be nothing left to manage. 


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#371 Wheelsup

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 05:30 PM

The bankrupt SG have obviously got their beady eyes on our reserve fund.

We should be trying to get rid if it by some “sensible” investment, as they will simply keep reducing any funding until its gone anyway.

They are going to put the taxes up whatever

#372 whalsa

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 07:19 AM

The bankrupt SG have obviously got their beady eyes on our reserve fund.

We should be trying to get rid if it by some “sensible” investment, as they will simply keep reducing any funding until its gone anyway.

They are going to put the taxes up whatever

Wheelsup if we "get rid of it" by any means we will be forced into massive service cuts, I am sure you wouldn't like to see schools and care homes etc being closed due to a lack of funds?



#373 Capeesh

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 10:00 AM

Austerity = cuts
We (the UK) voted in a Tory government in London who promised to slash spending and cut borrowing.
It's worth remembering local authority funding in England has been cut by 26% since 2010 (source fullfact.org).
Every council/authority in Britain is feeling the pinch.
Of course our representatives in the SIC, Scottish Government, UK government and EU (while we're still members) should be screaming from the rooftops to secure more cash, but it seems to me our slice of the pie is shrinking because the people baking the pie (the UK treasury) are busy doing what the Tories promised they would do, cutting the ingredients and making it smaller.
That, paired with the UK having a stagnant or shrinking economy, (if economists predictions on no deal Brexit are correct), means there'll probably more cuts to come.
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#374 whalsa

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 11:09 AM

Shetland has received similar, if not higher, cuts with 10.4% cut in the past two years alone - more than any other area in Scotland. 

Much of the UKs financial woes can be blamed on Westminster but Holyrood are the ones directly inflicting huge cuts on Scotland's local authorities. For example, in 16/17 the Scottish Government received a cash increase from Westminster but cut local authority funding by £350M, with Shetland receiving the worst percentage cut of all of these. 

It appears to me that Holyrood is starving local authorities of funding (rural regions in particular), for what reason is anyone's guess but I wouldn't be surprised if it was to fund projects such as shiny new vote winning bridges in the central belt.

 


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#375 Urabug

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 11:56 AM

Shetland has received similar, if not higher, cuts with 10.4% cut in the past two years alone - more than any other area in Scotland. 

Much of the UKs financial woes can be blamed on Westminster but Holyrood are the ones directly inflicting huge cuts on Scotland's local authorities. For example, in 16/17 the Scottish Government received a cash increase from Westminster but cut local authority funding by £350M, with Shetland receiving the worst percentage cut of all of these. 

It appears to me that Holyrood is starving local authorities of funding (rural regions in particular), for what reason is anyone's guess but I wouldn't be surprised if it was to fund projects such as shiny new vote winning bridges in the central belt.

 

Where did the extra funding that was required to partly complete the Edinburgh Trams come from, and where will the extra funding to finally get it down to Leith and complete the original project pop up from.

 

the Queensferry Crossing not to mention the thousands now to be spent on the old Forth Bridge. Dey will fin money fur dat du can be sure!

 

You are absolutely correct whalsa the Shetland Islands seems to be at the bottom of the picking list . 


Edited by Urabug, 04 November 2017 - 11:57 AM.

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#376 Ghostrider

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 04:17 PM

 

Shetland's oil money for dummies type explanation required here.

 

The Charitable Trust we kinda know about, its been through the press enough lately that's its skeletons have mostly all be well rattled. Its (theoretically at least) a self-sufficient (supposed to be) stand alone fund, entirely seperate from the SIC, run by a bunch of unevictable unmentionables.

 

The Reserve Fund is very much another type of beast though in my understanding. Correct me where I go wrong here, as I surely will, but is it or isn't it still a wholly SIC thing? Likewise, is or isn't the 'Reserve Fund' the same thing as the 'SIC's Reserves'? My understanding is that the Reserve Fund is SIC run, but that would seem at odds with it being a charity, or would it. So???? My understanding also is that the 'SIC's Reserves' is a wholly different bank account to the 'Reserve Fund'. and is most definitely wholly SIC controlled. Yes/no?

Pretty much. The Councils Reserves are entirely separate from the Charitable Trusts funds and is controlled directly by the SIC. Currently the return we receive from investing this money is used to fund services (in effect "topping up" the funding shortage from Holyrood).

 

So, just to be 100% clear on this. The pot of money officially known as 'The Reserve Fund' and last heard of being worth somewhere in the regions of £200 - £220+ Million, which, I understand was created from the operating profits from Sullom Voe, is the same thing as 'the Council's reserves'.

 

Apologies for perhaps appearing to labour the point, but the media, either don't know or don't care to make clear whether or not they are talking about one pot of money or two, when they variously refer to the 'Reserve Fund' and 'Council reserves'. Leaving us who probably should have been paying more attention sooner, unclear on just what money exists, and what name is painted on the piggy bank its in..


Edited by Ghostrider, 04 November 2017 - 04:18 PM.


#377 Urabug

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 07:50 PM

Well Ghostrider there was certainly two separate funds initially created one was the Council oil reserve fund and the other was the Shetland Charitable Trust .I'm not sure but I think they were separately managed but with the passage of time many changes have occurred and I also find it difficult to distinguish whether "the reserve fund and the charitable fund are one and the same now.

 

A clue might be, why would the council raid the charitable funds if they already have other reserves.

 

Why would OSCR get involved if the council were not spending charitable money indiscriminately,surely oil reserves that were being squandered and not charitable would not have attracted their attention.

 

I could be and I probably am completely wrong just ma'be some kind soul out there will correct me. :ponders:



#378 Ghostrider

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Posted 04 November 2017 - 08:47 PM

^ As I understand it, The OSCR got involved due to the majority of SCT trustees being Councillors, arguing, that being the case the SCT was not an indpendent body, but an integral, or at least semi-integral part of the SIC. There was the long running argument with the auditors or some such wanting SIC and SCT accounts to be submitted as one set of account rather than seperate, on account of the "special" relationship between them or similar.

 

You're right, to the best of my recollection back in the dark ages the 'Shetland Islands Council Charitable Trust' and 'The Reserve Fund' were set up by the SIC and managed as seperate funds. The SICCT was funded, I believe, from various argeements with and payments from the oil industry, there was so-called 'disturbance money', the much derided '1p/tonne' levy on throughput and god knows what else. The Reserve Fund on the the hand, was wholly financed from the profits the SIC made from operating the 'Port of Sullom Voe' over the years - How this occured when a local authority is disbarred from running a commercial enterprise by EU regs, I dunno, but its a whole other question.

 

The SICCT has evolved in to what is the SCT now, theoretically at least, supposedly a stand alone organisation wholly indpendent of the SIC or any other organisations control..... The Reserve Fund still exists as a seperate entity still wholly under SIC control, as best as I can understand it.

 

What I'm not clear on is whether The Reserve Fund and the £200 Million or so that's said to be in it is all the SIC has "under the bed", or not.

 

Given that The Reserve Fund apparently exists wholly from operational profits from Sullom Voe and the returns on the investment of those funds, what happens to the SIC many other income streams.

 

They're involved in numerous activities commercially that should be bringing in something, leasing/renting of land/properties, operating all the other harbours in Shetland unless Lerwick etc, Even just budget surpluses at year's end. Does all of that just get thrown in to the general kitty and swallowed up in ongoing routine expenditure, or has it been salted away somewhere as a seperate general "reserve".

 

The cynic says the SIC is incapable of producing a year end budget suprlus, or making a profit on a commercial venture, and consequently the chances of a seperate "reserve" existing are nil, but I'm prepared to be proven wrong.







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