Huntingdonshire District Council could loan college £1.5million

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HRC logo - Credit: Archant

HUNTINGDONSHIRE Regional College could borrow £1.5million from the district council to help continue its building programme.

In the last three years, £7m has been invested in improvements to the buildings on the California Road site. Much of the spending has gone towards repairing and replacing roofing, as well as upgrading the heating system.

A loan is being considered so the work can be completed and the college’s reserves can be replenished.

Scott Cryer, vice principal for finance, resources and planning, said: “We’re in the fortunate position of not having any debt. We always knew we would have to take on modest borrowings and probably dispose of some assets to pay for the work.”

He said HDC had been approached about a loan because it could access “cheap money from the Government”.

“They can pass it on to us and the council will make some money in doing that. Both the council and the college would benefit, rather than go to a normal commercial lender.”

Mr Cryer said no decision had been made.

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HDC’s cabinet discussed the possibility of the loan when it met on Thursday (June 20). HDC told The Hunts Post that the loan had been agreed, in principle but was “still subject to agreement of details”.

The spokesman added: “Local authorities are able to borrow from the Public Works Loan Board, a Government agency, at low rates, and are able to pass these rates on when agreeing to make a loan after assessing an organisation’s financial position.

“Huntingdonshire Regional College is hugely important as the only higher education facility in the district that provides access to further education for students aged 16 and over.

“The council is very keen to support the work being undertaken to ensure its continued success.”