Public Finance

Articles from January 2009

A&E Staff 'Not Doing Enough to Control Pain'
Accident and emergency staffare still not doing enough to control patients' pain, the NHS watchdog has revealed.The Healthcare Commission's survey of 50,000 people who visited an A&E department between January and March 2008 revealed that 14% said...
A New Reality for Tenants
Housing needs the 'X factor'. As the popularity of reality TV demonstrates, people want to have their say. Gone are the days when an 'expert' jury could make the decision for them. Now they want - and expect - to be able to get involved in deciding who...
Bringing It All Back Home
If one thing Is apparent in these turbulent times, it is that principles we have had for decades are no longer sacrosanct. If the government can bail out banks following catastrophic market failure and introduce a ?20bn Keynesian-style fiscal stimulus...
Bury Withdraws Notice to Sack and Rehire Staff
Bury council has been forced to retract letters terminating the contracts of its 4,000 staff within a week of sending them.The Greater Manchester authority sent the letters on January 2, ending the contracts but offering re-engagement on new terms. The...
Continental Drift
Next week, when Barack Obama is inaugurated as the forty-fourth president of the US, the crowds will be cheering as lustily by the Brandenburg Gate as they will on the steps of the Capitol in Washington DC. Berliners might well claim that Obama's tumultuous...
Councils Prepare to Slash Jobs to Balance Their Books
Councils are sel to make swingeing Job cuts In an attempt to balance the boohs ahead of their budgets next month.One In seven local authorities has decided to cut jobs as a result of the economic downturn, according to a Local Government Association...
DCLG Funds Charity to Help Homeless Migrants
A charity is being given government money to help economic migrants in London to return home.The scheme is the first London-wide programme to help Eastern Europe migrants return to their home countries as the economic downturn increases the risk of foreign...
Essex Short-Lists Outsourcing Bidders
Essex County Council has shortlisted five bidders to run 'any or all' of its services in its huge £5.4bn outsourcing programme.The council issued a tender notice in November for what could be the biggest local government outsourcing scheme. It said the...
Events
January* JANUARY 21PMRA and National School of Government conference: Responding together to the challenge of recession - housing and communitiesSpeakers include: Keith Moffitt, leader of the London Borough of Camden; and Richard McCarthy, director general...
Government Use of Consultants Is Inefficient, Warns Audit Scotland
A public spending watchdog has criticised central government bodies in Scotland over the employment of consultants, arguing that they could achieve better value for money with improved planning and management.In a report published on January 15, Audit...
Housing Chief Fired over Homes Scandal
A senior housing officer has been dismissed by her local authority after failing to declare that she had moved into sheltered housing previously used by elderly people.Kristine Reeves, head of neighbourhood and strategic housing at Norwich City Council,...
Letters
It's the way that you do itIn reply to the letter from my New Zealand compatriot Heather Kinsey CIFRS is not the cure-all it seems', November 14-20), I suggest that the charges against International Financial Reporting Standards and International Public...
More Authorities Sign MAAs
Twenty-three local authorities have signed up for the second wave of cross-boundary MultiArea Agreements, which aim to improve employment and training opportunities and strengthen rural Infrastructure.The January 12 agreement sets up three MAAs in Merseyside,...
New Warning on PFI Waste Scheme Delays
Delays in developing new Private Finance Initiative waste treatment facilities could result in hundreds of millions of pounds worth of European Union fines, the National Audit Office has said.In its report on local authorities' use of the PFI to develop...
Opportunity Knots
the timing could have been better. I punching a social mobility white paper in the midst of what business leaders call a 'frightening deterioration in the UK's economic prospects might seem atad Pollyannaish.And badging it New opportunities: fair chances...
Recession Is Hitting Councils' Capital Projects
Councils' capital projects are being jeopardised by the recession, a survey of English local authority chief executives has shown.The survey, carried out by the Local Government Association and the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior...
Recession Will Hit Quality of Public Services, Experts Warn
The economic downturn could hit the quality of public services, as falling income combines with rising levels of demand, experts have claimed.The warning in a January 13 report by consultancy Deloitte came as the government launched a series of initiatives...
Round-Up
* Local authorities in Wales will receive monthly revenue support grant payments from the Welsh Assembly Government around five days earlier for the rest of this financial year to help them pay bills. Welsh Local Government Minister Brian Gibbons said:...
So What Would You Do in 2009?
In December I gave evidence to two parliamentary select committees - the Treasury committee on the PreBudget Report and the public administration select committee for their inquiry on 'good government'.At the Treasury committee, Tory MP Graham Brady,...
Swinney Stands by His 'Budget for Recovery'
Scottish Finance Minister John Swinney has defended his controversial budget proposals in the face of opposition attacks.Swinney told the Scottish Parliament on January 14 that in addition to supporting economic recovery, the budget would provide a rising...
Tackling Disadvantage Might Become a Legal Duty
Public sector bodies could find themselves with a new duty to tackle the old boy' network if the latest government thinking becomes law.The government's New opportunities white paper, which aims to improve social mobility through better education and...
The 2009 Funding from Whitehall Is Delayed
Every January, the New Year opens with bad news about the railways. The rise in fares that is imposed in time to greet people renewing their season tickets at the start of the year is usually compounded by tales of rail chaos, induced either by the weather...
'Too Many Bodies Negotiate Council Pay
The number of bodies involved in local government pay negotiations in Scotland should be reduced, the head of the council employers' organisation has told MSPs.Giving evidence to the Scottish Parliament's finance committee on January 13, Joe di Paola,...
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