FUNDING for grants to help disabled people remain in their own homes is set to cut by a third in Monmouthshire, raising concerns among county councillors.

The proposal is to cut the budget for disabled facilities grants (DFG) from £900,000 to £600,000.

The budget for such grants was raised to £900,000 by the council three years ago - to tackle a backlog of applications that had been put on hold due to a lack of funding - and has been kept at that level since.

There is currently no backlog of applications, but councillors and officers raised concerns at a meeting of the council's adult select committee, that a reduction in funding to £600,000 could see applications falling behind again.

Cllr Roger Harris asked if it was proposed to cut the DFG to £600,000.

The council’s housing and regeneration manager Ian Bakewell said: “It’s a conversation that cabinet has raised, and we have been asked to provide evidence.

“I personally am of the view that the additional funding we put in two years ago has made a massive difference.

“On the basis of the current demand it makes me wonder if we would go back to having a backlog.”

Cllr Harris said: “To think about cutting back when we are not even reaching the target in my mind is incomprehensible.”

The target time for completing the provision of a disability funding grant is 180 days, but Monmouthshire’s current average is 187 days.

Cabinet member for resources Cllr Phil Murphy £600,000 is the amount in the base budget, and Mr Bakewell and his team had been asked for a progress report on how the situation with DFGs had been alleviated.

“We will consider that report. It’s a case of reviewing the capital budget," said Cllr Murphy.

“This is what we wanted, to make this decision.”

Cllr Frances Taylor, who chairs the committee, said: “The projection in the medium-term financial plan to return to £600,000 is a significant concern for this committee.

“We would recommend to the cabinet member and cabinet that they reassess that, in line with the demand and the detail we have been able to see in this report.”

The council's cabinet will be asked to take note of the committee's concerns in relation to the proposed funding cut, when considering the report.