Public Finance

Articles from October 2008

Affordable Homes Grants Must Rise, 'Despite Financial Crisis'
Grants for affordable housing must continue to increase in response to the credit crisis facing social landlords and other developers, the head of a new multi-billion pound government agency said this week.Schemes put forward as part of the National...
Brown's £500Bn Bailout Sends Debt Soaring to Record Level
Economists have warned that the government s £500bn banking sector rescue package will lead to a further squeeze on public spending in two to three years' time - and put public sector debt at its highest level since the 1970s.The measures announced by...
Calls for Curbs on RSL Top Pay
Housing associations are coming under new pressure to curb the pay of senior staff after some chief executives defied the economic downturn and received double-digit increases.Mark Bramah, assistant chief executive of the Association for Public Service...
Commanding Depths
The cherished fiscal rules lie in tatters as the government embarks on a borrowing bonanza aimed at stabilising the turmoil in the UK's banking sector.Alistair Darlings announcement of a £500bn rescue plan, including £50bn to part-nationalise up to eight...
Cost of Public Sector Pensions 'Unsustainable in Current Form'
The government should use the economic crisis to review public sector pension schemes, Public finance has been told.David Davison, a director at the independent actuaries Spence and Partners, said: 'If there's going to be pressure on public finances,...
Events
* OCTOBER 16CIPFA health finance conference 2008 - Our NHS, our future: Implementing the visionSpeakers include: Bob Alexander, director of finance (NHS), Department of Health; Anna Dtxon, acting director of policy, the King's Fund; and Nigel Edwards,...
Home Building Target 'Adrift'
Surveyors have dealt another blow to the government s housing targets after reporting the worst-ever quarterly results for house building.By the end of September, just 66,220 homes had been built in 2008. With fewer than 25,000 likely to be completed...
Indebted Hospital Set for 'Franchising'
A crisis-hit Cambridgeshire hospital trust could be run by private sector managers in the first use of the government's recently relaunched and controversial 'franchising' policy.The franchising scheme bringing in managers from top NHS organisations...
Joined-Up Government?
It could be the biggest political news story of the autumn: the return of the Prince of Darkness, or the Prince of Sleaze as one newspaper unkindly called him. Media excitement about Peter Mandelson's surprise return was palpable, even after the financial...
Keeping IFRS on Track
If ? two months since the end of the Olympics, and most of us will have forgotten about those less popular sports that we watched so avidly only a few weeks ago. We won't notice the years of hard work that the athletes will put into preparing for the...
Letters
When two into one won't goSo, the article 'Collaborative Efforts' (September 19-25) establishes Tracie Evans as some kind of superwoman. Not only is she finance director of a local authority but now combines that role with that of FD of a primary care...
LGA Opposes Elected Policing Representatives
The Home Office is facing increasing opposition to the introduction of elected crime and policing representatives, as councillors step up their campaign against the proposals.Following Sir Ian Blairs resignation from his post as the Metropolitan Police...
LibDems Call for 'Radical Reform' of Care for the Elderly
The Liberal Democrats have criticised the government for 'dithering' over reform of the social care system, after figures showed elderly people paid £1.6bn in charges for care last year.The LibDems said analysis of local authority personal social services...
Oldham Faces Up to Cost Cuts and Job Losses
As the economy falters, a chill wind is blowing through town halls across the country. Inflation and fuel price rises in particular have councillors nervously eyeing next year's budgets.But in Oldham, the crisis looks especially severe: last month, the...
Put to the Test
These are testing times for the national tests popularly known as Sats. Schools Secretary Ed Balls had to give written weekly updates on this year's tests during August, after serious delays in delivering the results.These have now put back the publication...
Refuse Rethink
Nobody argues that landfill is a long-term solution for waste disposal. In fact, throwing our waste into holes in the ground is just about the worst thing we can do - environmentally and financially.Of course, it is best not to generate waste at all,...
Round-Up
* Welsh Local Government Minister Brian Gibbons has welcomed the publication of data showing how the quality of local authority services in Wales improved in 2007-08. The Bulletin, published by the Local Government Data Unit, shows that while the standard...
Tax Reforms Reach Freezing Point
The Conservatives have decided to make an issue of council tax. Having seen Labour flounder for more than 11 years with the toxic issue of local taxation, the Tories went on to the attack at their recent annual conference in Birmingham. In doing so,...
Think Strategically about Savings, Councils Told
Councils must take a sustainable approach to efficiency over the next three years if they are to achieve the £4.9bn savings expected, the Audit Commission has said.In a report published on October 8, the commission focused on savings that could be made...
Time to Get Tough
After the past turbulent month and this week's bailout of high street banks, the financial system and the wider economy are clearly playing a greater role than ever in voters' perceptions of politicians' competence.It is clear that over the past year...
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