Community Loans Procedure

Purpose statement

This procedure establishes and sets out the criteria, eligibility requirements and approval process through which a community group or organization may obtain a community loan from the Town of Oakville for the provision of a major capital project, facility or initiative which benefits the community.

Scope

Community loans are available only to Oakville-based community groups and organizations which exist for the purpose of providing municipally-related programs or services to the residents of Oakville. The proceeds of a community loan may only be utilized for the purpose of development of major capital projects, facilities or initiatives which specifically benefit the residents of Oakville subject to the criteria and limitations contained herein. Ownership of facilities shall be vested in the Town of Oakville.

Community loan requests involving local non-profit volunteer community groups, arts and culture organizations and certain recreation and community protection related activities are not covered by this procedure and will be forwarded to the appropriate town or agency service. Requests from the aforementioned groups may be covered under other policies and procedures which include, but are not limited to;

  • Community Assistance for non-profit volunteer community groups
  • The Cultural Grants program - administered by the Oakville Arts Council on behalf of the Town of Oakville
  • Oakville Arts Council Grant
  • Historical Society Grant
  • Halton Learning Foundation - Playground Grant
  • Storm Sewer Laterals and Private Storm Sewer lateral Grant Program
  • Loans or grants implemented through a Council approved Community Improvement Plan (CIP)
  • Façade Improvement grant program

Organizations requesting a community loan for a purpose which meets the criteria of a funding opportunity offered by another level of government will be referred to that funding source. In addition, the proceeds of a community loan should not be considered as the primary source of funding. The applicant must show that there has been exploration of other financial support mechanisms.

Restrictions to requests for community loans;

Community loans shall be restricted to those organizations that have entered into community partnership arrangements with the town and the project or initiative has been approved through the town’s capital forecast and budget process. Repayment of the loan shall be secured through a Council approved operating agreement between the town and applicant organization which details the terms and conditions of the community partnership and loan repayment. The term of the loan may not extend beyond the life of the capital work for which the debt was incurred, further limited to a maximum of 40 years.

Community loans will not be provided:

  1. To religious organizations for sacred or sectarian purposes;
  2. To political parties, ridings, associations and candidates;
  3. To individuals;
  4. For charitable causes;
  5. As a replacement for other funding sources;
  6. To commercial and/or third-party fundraising individuals;
  7. To coalitions such as ratepayer or tenant/landlord associations, or to support programs or services geared specifically to these groups;
  8. On a retroactive basis for purposes which have already occurred;
  9. For non-capital expenditures

Procedure

Community loans are available only to organizations which can demonstrate that:

  • There is community support for the programs, services or projects offered by the group;
  • There is a proven track record of community involvement in areas such as sports; service to the community; or not for profit;
  • There are synergies and opportunities for integration between the community group/organization and town priorities/strategic directions;
  • There is a need for financial assistance; and that adequate funding for the programs or services is not available from other sources;
  • There has been consultation with the relevant town service and support for a partnering arrangement that results in the development of a major capital project, facility or initiative by its referral to the 10 year capital forecast process;

Eligibility requirements

  1. Be a not-for-profit community group or organization (registered as a charitable organization by Revenue Canada) initiating or delivering programs and services to the municipality;
  2. Operate under a formal organizational structure with an active board of directors and/or executive committee/officers;
  3. Be based in Oakville, with an established membership which can be demonstrated is constant or growing; and which the majority of are Oakville residents;
  4. Offer services, programs and activities that primarily benefit Oakville citizens;
  5. Be able to demonstrate the fiscal and operational viability and accountability of the organization; including the capacity to meet its new community partnership obligations for the major capital project, program or initiative which the community loan will support;
  6. Be able to demonstrate that the funding assistance requested from the town supplements funding the organization has received through other sources and its own fundraising efforts.

Submission process

Written proposals outlining the project and intent to partner with the town for the development of major capital projects, facilities or initiatives shall be directed to the commissioner of the relevant service commission or his/her delegate for initial review and evaluation. The submission shall contain;

  • An outline of the major capital project, facility or initiative including estimated timing and how it will be sustainable;
  • A detailed budget (Financial Plan) including actual/projected revenue and expenses;
  • Proof of registration as a charitable organization with Revenue Canada or status as a Not for Profit organization (NPO);
  • Organization structure with board of director’s names, positions, and phone numbers;
  • Information about the organization and how its programs or services benefit the community;
  • A statement of the organization’s goals and objectives, constitution and by-laws or, operating guidelines;
  • A current business plan/budget for the organization as well as audited financial statements for the immediately preceding year;

Review and Approval process

Requests will be reviewed by staff for accuracy, completeness and compliance with all municipal and provincial laws, policies and guidelines. Those that do not meet the requirements for further consideration will be so advised, in writing, but may make representation to the Budget Committee as a delegation at the appropriate time.

Those requests that meet the eligibility criteria will be further reviewed by staff as a potential recommendation for inclusion in the capital forecast process. This review will take into account affordability and budgetary constraints which may result in a lesser amount being recommended or the request being deferred or denied.

Staff will present the recommended proposal as part of its presentations and recommendations to the Capital Forecast and Budget process. All applicant organizations will be notified of the recommendation regarding their particular group prior to the meeting date. Applicant organizations may be requested to provide a presentation of the proposal to the Budget committee. The Budget committee’s recommendations will be forwarded to Council for consideration and final decision.

Upon approval of the recommended proposal by Council, the applicant organization shall be required to enter into an agreement with the town with respect to loan and repayment terms, operations, title and other conditions to the satisfaction of the town’s Legal and Financial Planning departments.

Monitoring

The terms of approved community loan agreements with the town for the development of a major capital project, facility or initiative must be complied with and the proceeds of the loan may only be used for those purposes approved by Council. An organization will be required to provide verification through financial statements or receipts that the financial assistance provided was expended according to the resolution of support approved by Council.

Town Acknowledgement

Community assistance recipients will be required to acknowledge the support of the Town of Oakville in all advertising, publicity, programs, signage and plaques relating to the project for which funds were provided. The recipient may not represent the town as a partner, or hold the town responsible for any obligations relating to the project.

Definitions

Business plan: a document that establishes direction for delivery of a particular service based on a market analysis and identification of goals and objectives, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. A business plan should include a summary of current status and related issues, capital and operating budgets, financial impacts, alternatives considered, preferred alternative(s) and specific recommendations for implementation, evaluation, responsibility and timeline

Community Group or Organization: duly constituted group, club, association or society

Community partnership: an arrangement that involves the town and one or more additional entities from the community, not for profit, etc. sector which enables the town and other entities to achieve strategic objectives through the sharing of resources.

Not for profit or Not for profit organization (NPO): registered with Revenue Canada and be a Club, Society or Association that is organized solely for:

  • Social welfare
  • Civic improvement
  • Pleasure and recreation or any other purpose except profit

Responsibilities

The Treasurer of the Town of Oakville and/or his/her delegate(s) is responsible to ensure that this procedure is complied with.

Procedure details

Procedure Number: MS-SPR-002-008
Parent Policy: MS-SPR-002
Section: Municipal Services
Sub-Section: Special Requests
Author: Financial Planning Department
Authority: CAO
Effective Date: 2015 Jun 29
Review by Date: 2020