£60000 COMMUNITY BENEFIT FUND ANNOUNCED

The third Annual General Meeting of the Islay Energy Community Benefit Society (IECBS) was held at the High School on Wednesday 27th April. 17 society members and 4 from the general public attended. The Chair, Izzy Coughlin introduced the Annual Report and Audited Accounts and described how the project has progressed in its first period of full operation. The electricity generated by the turbine, and the financial performance have both been up to expectation and inline with the indications set out in the original prospectus for the project.

Accordingly, it was announced that an interest payment to the member shareholders of 4% would be made in respect of the year 2015. The main purpose of building the turbine is to provide a fund for use by the communities of Islay, Jura and Colonsay, and the Board of the Society decided that the sum of £60000 would be transferred to the registered charity, Islay Energy Trust (IET). It is hoped that similar sums will be transferred in future years, dependent entirely on the performance of the turbine (and of course the wind!).

Dr Billy Sinclair, on behalf of IET described to the meeting the priority areas to which the fund will be applied, based on the earlier research work conducted during the planning of the project. Full details will become available on the IET website in due course (www.islayenergytrust.org.uk). For further information and to express an interest in the fund, contact Billy at the IET office in Custom House, Bowmore, Mondays to Wednesdays on 301413.

Two members of the IECBS Board, Margaret Rozga and Donald Ewen Darroch, retired by rotation and announced that they would not seek re-election. One nomination to act as a Director of the Society was received and Jenni Minto was duly appointed, which leaves one vacancy.

Izzy Coughlin closed the meeting by announcing that she would step down as Chair at the next Board meeting, when a new Chair will be appointed. Izzy will however remain on the Board. The members expressed their sincere thanks for the considerable work Izzy has undertaken to get the project up-and- running, and successfully at that!

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