The National Association for Voluntary and Community Action has warned local authorities that arbitrary, ill-informed cuts to voluntary sector grants may well breach the Compact and break the law.
The warning came as more councils revealed plans for cuts to grants. Disability and environmental groups in Lincoln are among those at risk if cutbacks, planned by the city council to save more than £100,000, go ahead.
Northampton Borough Council has drafted plans to go back on a proposed 3.3 per cent increase to its voluntary sector budget. Totnes Town Council in Devon has cut its community grants by a third.
Kevin Curley, chief executive of Navca, said cuts should be made within the framework of local partnership. "If local authorities put themselves first and cut the sector unilaterally, it undermines the whole principle of coherent, local strategic partnerships," he said.