Public Finance

Articles from October 2005

A Very Social Problem
Britain isn't working. Not yet. True, we have one of the lowest unemployment levels in the eurozone. And true, 2 million more people are in work than in 1997. As the chancellor never tires of telling us, Britain could teach Europe a thing or two when...
Central Government Team Award
The courage, imagination and sheer hard work demonstrated by staff at the Leeds-based partnership Ambition: Energy were rewarded earlier this year when they were named the best central government team at the 2005 Public Servants of the Year Awards.The...
Councils Can Compare Their Performance On-Line
Town hall managers are now able to take advantage of a new Audit Commission-run website, which will allow them to compare the service performance in their area with any other authority in England.The Area Profiles website, launched by the commission...
Councils Face Tight Financial Settlement Next Year
Councils could be forced to delve into billions of pounds of vital cash reserves following a tough 2006/07 finance settlement, ministers have warned town hall officials.The stark warning was made public this week by Sarah Wood, the Local Government Association's...
Efficiency Drive to Intensify, Says Treasury Chief Secretary
Further demanding targets for efficiency savings beyond the Gershon programme will be at the heart of the 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review, the Cabinet minister masterminding it has told Public Finance.Chief Secretary to the Treasury Des Browne, giving...
Free Nationwide Bus Travel for Scots Pensioners
Older and disabled people will be able to travel for free throughout Scotland under a national concessionary bus scheme to be introduced next year.Transport Minister Tavish Scott this week issued a consultation paper giving details of the scheme, which...
Government Data Should Be Audited, Says Watchdog
The national statistician should have the power to audit and, if necessary, qualify all statistics produced by government departments to help overcome public distrust of official data, an independent watchdog says.The Statistics Commission wants the...
Health of a Nation
As Professor Sir Liam Donaldson launched his book on the history of chief medical officers this week, he must have been reflecting on how difficult the job has become.Donaldson indeed tells a good story of the CMO who, after the Second World War, made...
Housing Team Award
Housing has risen to the top of the political agenda recently and, with it, the demands made on professionals working in the sector.Staff everywhere are striving to achieve the decent homes target and meet the increasing demand for social housing, while...
Integration Vote Fails by Less Than 1%
CIPFA's planned integration with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales failed this week by the narrowest of margins.Members of both bodies backed the merger motion - CIPFA with 86.7% in favour and the ICAEW with 65.7%. However,...
Look at Your Partnerships, Report Urges
Partnerships between public sector organisations risk wasting money unless there is a clear sense of what they are hoping to achieve and who is in charge, the Audit Commission warned this week.Governing partnerships: bridging the accountability gap,...
Minister Promises Action to Curb Pupils' Bad Behaviour
Education secretary Ruth Kelly has backed head teachers' calls for tougher legislation to deal with unruly pupils, following a report on behaviour in schools.Kelly accepted the findings of the Practitioners' Group on School Behaviour and Discipline,...
MPs Want Pension Deal Extended to LGPS
Sixty-six MPs have signed a parliamentary motion urging Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott to extend last weeks surprise deal on unfunded public sector pensions to local government.The growing support for concessions on employees' retirement plans to...
News: In Brief
* Peter Neyroud has been appointed chief executive designate of the new National Policing Improvement Agency, Home Secretary Charles Clarke has announced. Neyroud is currently chief constable of Thames Valley Police and will take up his new post in January.*...
Onwards and Upwards
This could have been a very different article. It was going to be a firm condemnation of the Audit Commission's proposed changes to the Comprehensive Performance Assessment. But almost as soon as I started to write, the commission issued the single tier...
Pause for Court
Last month we alerted readers to a major change in the public procurement regime that is going to take effect in January next year ('Buying time', September 9-15). In the meantime, the government has decided that it cannot wait until then to correct...
PCTs' Provider Role Still in Doubt
Health professionals fear that primary care trusts will still lose their function as providers, despite Health Secretary Patricia Hewitt s apparent concession on the issue this week.Hewitt told Parliament she would not now force through the change. She...
Profits at 'Big Six' Businesses Rise by £162M
Whitehall's 'big six' businesses increased in value by around £1.7bn last year, according to a new study.The annual report of the Shareholder Executive, the body charged with improving the commercial performance of government-owned or part-owned businesses,...
Public, Not Civil, Service Says Bichard
The civil service should be replaced by a new organisation embracing all those involved in the management of the public sector, former top civil servant Sir Michael Richard has suggested.'The term "civil service" was coined to distinguish it from the...
Round-Up
Virgin Trains' contract to operate inter-city services on routes that do not include London is to be terminated. The decision was announced by Transport secretary Alistair Darling and forms part of the government's wider plan to improve services on the...
Schools to Be 'Freed' from Council Control
Proposals to 'free schools from council control will exacerbate inequalities and frustrate child protection plans, education experts warned this week.The education white paper, heralded by ministers as a once in a generation opportunity to transform...
Stemming the Flow
There are few more beguiling prospects than a mountain stream tumbling its way down through rocks on a verdant hillside. When it is gushing down your high street at a thousand litres an hour, the charm quickly evaporates.According to the latest figures,...
Take Your Partners
Partnership is the watchword of the twenty-first century public sector. Be it public-private partnerships, Local Area Agreements, children's trusts, or urban regeneration companies, joined-up working is the way forward.In the best examples, partnerships...
Tax Staff Pay Harmonised with Rises
Most of the Revenue & Customs department's 100,000 staff are to receive pay rises of 3%-4% each year until 2008 under a new deal that will eradicate large wage disparities.After months of protracted negotiations, former Inland Revenue and Customs...
The Ties That Bind
Partnerships are now recognised as essential for the public sector. But entering into them simply for the sake of it, without clear objectives and governance arrangements, is a different matter. It is time for public bodies to take stock of which partnerships...
Unions Slam Threat to Ofsted Special Leave
Ofsted, the education watchdog, was this week accused of a puritanical attitude towards its staff after it emerged that managers could cut costs by docking employees' pay if they take emergency leave.Public Finance has discovered that senior Ofsted managers...
Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.