To receive an update on the impact of the closure of the Independent Living Fund (20 mins).
The Director of Health and Wellbeing provided an update on the impact of the closure of the Independent Living Fund (ILF).
During the discussion of this item the following points were made:
· The Independent Living Fund was established in 1988 to make direct payments to enable disabled people and (where appropriate) their carers to purchase support that could not be obtained from local authorities.
· Following changes to the way in which care was delivered by local authorities, the ILF was closed to new claimants from December 2010. In 2012 the closure of the fund for existing beneficiaries from 31 March 2015 was announced. Judicial Review meant this was delayed until 30 June 2015. Since 1 July 2015 the Council had had full responsibility to fund eligible care needs (defined in accordance with the Care Act 2014) for current ILF beneficiaries in its area.
· Regular information updates were provided to the Council by ILF and these had initially confirmed that 19 cases were likely to transfer to the Council upon the fund’s closure.
· All affected customers had been advised in writing in April of the transfer date, that the Council intended to carry out a full re-assessment of their needs and that, in the meantime, funding at the appropriate ILF level would be paid by the Council for July and August where appropriate. They had also been advised that should the re-assessment process not be completed by the end of August, further funding at the ILF level would be made available for September.
· 18 cases were transferred on 1 July. The Council had been informed that it would receive £230,456 in ILF grant funding for the remainder of the financial year.
· The Committee was advised of progress on the transferred cases as at 8 September. 2 recipients had moved outside of the Borough and ongoing care arrangements had been passed to their new local authority. The ILF grant did not move with the recipients; in another case a customer was now fully funded under S117 arrangements with Health partners; in another instance the review process had been completed and the customer now jointly funded by the Council and the CCG on a 50/50 basis; the re-assessment and Personal Budget review process had been completed in 7 cases; in 5 cases, the re-assessment process had been completed and reviews of the outcomes and possible impact on the Council defined Personal Budgets were ongoing; the re-assessment process was still ongoing in one case; and the Council had been unable to gain access to undertake the reassessment in another case.
· Councillor Swaddle asked what the situation was of the 19th individual of the cases identified pre transfer. The Director of Health and Wellbeing agreed to look into this and to feed back to the Principal Democratic Services Officer.
· The Director of Health and Wellbeing commented that it was difficult to understand the implications of the ILF transfer next year as it would no longer be separate ring fenced money.
· In response to a question from Councillor Haines it was clarified that the ILF was entirely separate to Disability Living Allowance.
· Members requested that a further report be provided to the Committee once all reviews had been completed.
1) the report and update on the transfer of Independent Living Fund cases to the Council be noted.
2) a further report be provided to the Committee once all reviews have been completed.