Public Finance

Articles from No. 1/2, 2016

A Clear Way Forward despite Austerity
The UK government's 'smoke and mirrors' Spending Review left unanswered questions and missed opportunities for Wales. It was yet another example of the chancellor's sleight-of-hand approach, seemingly giving with one hand but taking away far more with...
Against Collaboration
Collaboration is central to government policy, funding and performance management. Yet it wastes money, stifles innovation and creates bureaucracy, while the cause of fragmented services goes unaddressed.1. It leads to compliance not innovationCollaboration...
Cipfa Events
CIPFA, the leading public finance and accountancy body, is the major event and course provider for the public services. Our events range from technical updates to conferences on strategic issues. Covering finance, governance and performance topics across...
Commission for Results
Outcome-based commissioning could boost efficiency and help to develop new models of provision, experts at a CIPFA roundtable have said.At the debate held on 14 December, 28 figures from Whitehall, local government, the NHS and the social investment...
Conferences
CIPFA holds key conferences across a range of areas from technical guidance to debate and food for thought provided by leading speakers, experts and commentators. Search under 'conferences' at www.cipfa.org/events for our full listing.23 FEBRUARY, CARDIFFExcellent...
Council Pension Funds Merger Proposals Set Out
Details of how council pension fund assets are going to be pooled have begun to emerge before a deadline to submit proposals for the creation of British wealth funds, which could be used to boost infrastructure investment.At the 2015 Conservative Party...
Counting the Cost of Refugees
It was a rare case of the government hitting one of its own immigration targets. During the last Prime Minister's Question Time of 2015, David Cameron announced that, as planned, 1,000 Syrian refugees had been resettled in the UK during the previous...
Criminal Ignorance?
Outsourcing public services has been a dominant feature of UK political life for three decades. It doubled under the coalition government and is forecast to extend to one third of all services by value under this one. We should, then, know a great deal...
Efficiency Strings on Longer Funding Offer
Councils will need to set out efficiency plans to qualify for four-year financial settlements from April but local government secretary Greg Clark has said assessments will not be "heavy handed".Speaking at the Local Government Association's annual finance...
Feedback
Please air your views via the comment facilities at publicfinance.co.uk or by email to feedback@publicfinance.co.ukLittle hope for DIY libraries* Reporting on the closure of 100 libraries, you note, "yet there is some hope" given that "volunteer numbers...
Get Ready for Future Digital Danger Now
The government showed its commitment to investing in cyber defences and information security in the Autumn Statement, with a near doubling of spending to £1.9bn over five years. This includes recruiting 1,900 specialist staff, establishing a National...
Hardship Warning over Gaps in Local Welfare
Poor coordination between local and national welfare provision is leading to gaps in the safety net designed to prevent severe hardship, the work and pensions select committee has warned.In a report on the impact of welfare reforms that localised emergency...
How Well Did You Do in Our Quiz?
AnswerThanks to the many readers who entered our Christmas Quiz. Only 10 people evaded our trick questions and submitted a clean sheet of correct answers. Congratulations to Debbie Edwards, whose name was first out of the hat and who wins our £150 M&S...
In Brief
TAXScotland keeps same income tax - for nowScottish finance secretary John Swinney shunned his first opportunity to set a different income tax for Scotland from that in the rest of the UK, but was clear he intended to do so if full income tax varying...
Numbers Game
£693mParking pays for potholesCouncils in England made a surplus of £693m from parking charges and fines in 2014/15, according to the RAC Foundation. Funds will go toward the £12bn road repair backlog, the LGA said.Up the workersFigures from the Office...
Paradox of SNP's EU Enthusiasm
There will be no rest for the voters of Scotland in 2016. They have the Scottish parliamentary elections to look forward to in May, then a referendum on Europe if prime minister David Cameron gets his way. It's only 18 months since Scotland went through...
Petulance over Proof
Ding-dongs on social media are ten a penny, but one in early January caught my eye. Spectator editor Fraser Nelson and BusinessGreen editor James Murray, who spring from opposite corners when it comes to action on global warming, exchanged a few heated...
Promising Results from the Pledge
Gaining support from finance directors for the Future-Focused Finance project was an early FFF priority. To get NHS organisations involved, their finance directors had to lead - and signing the Finance Director Declaration showed this.By last July, 165...
Risk for Reward
In the months since the general election, the funding and financing of local government has - perhaps unexpectedly - become one of the Conservative government's major areas of reform.In the Spending Review of 25 November, chancellor George Osborne announced...
The $100Bn Muddle of Climate Cash
An unprecedented 195 world leaders signed a historic treaty to address climate change, in December. Given that the COP21 summit in Paris was convened under the cloud of previous failed attempts to broker a deal, any agreement - never mind one so ambitious...
The Power of Prediction
Hospitals around the country are well accustomed to huge annual rises in patient numbers as winter demand hits accident and emergency departments. But Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust (WWL) had to rethink service planning after unprecedented...
The Rise of a Role
Who does a secretary of state want in the room with them when there's a bit of hard negotiation to be done with the Treasury? The answer five years ago might have been the department's permanent secretary or director of strategy. Now, thanks to the changes...
Transformation: Manage It Right
We cannot afford the future unless we do things differently. Finance professionals recognise the imperative for change on efficiency grounds; the march of technology, globalisation, demands from customers and ever-changing legislation intensify the grounds...
Two New Elements for the Standards
Finance directors, internal auditors and audit committee chairs need to be aware of a forthcoming consultation on proposed changes to the Public Sector Internal Audit Standards.Many organisations may be considering carrying out their mandatory external...
Watchdog Watch
Overambitious and unachievable plans, and bad decision making due to a high turnover of both high-level and junior staff were also cited as reasons for failure.OFSTED? Ofsted's annual report shows underperforming secondary schools in England are concentrated...
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