Public Finance

Articles from No. 3, March

A Different Model for Local Audit Procurement?
"If God did not exist, it would be necessary to invent him," said Voltaire. Could the French philosopher's famous aphorism be applied to the Audit Commission? The government decided to do away wiThthe watchdog, but are they fi nding they may need it...
Arrival of the Fittest
The past few weeks have seen me help to judge the Public Finance Innovation Awards. Th is new set of awards aims to highlight and celebrate the best of fi nance and governance across the public sector. We announced the shortlist in February - you can...
Care Close to Home
Adults with mental health problems should no longer be placed inappropriately in acute care away from home by 2020-21, the government has said. Given this, do plans for place-based care in England focus enough on ensuring patients get treated close to...
Cipfa Events
CIPFA offers events around the UK to members and non-members alike. Our events range from small workshops for local CIPFA members through to large scale conferences aimed at professionals across most disciplines in the public sector. Below are the upcoming...
Contract Control Remains Fragile
The government has improved how it manages outsourced public services contracts, but these reforms are fragile and could still fail, the Institute for Government has warned.The think-tank reviewed Whitehall's progress in boosting its contract management...
Devo Deal or No Deal?
The left-behind. Th e just-about-managing. Or, according to some, the "forgotten people". Th e language varies, but the meaning is much the same: ignore the grievances of angry, alienated communities at your peril or suff er the electoral consequences....
Feedback
It was heartening to read Kim Thomas's article on funding arrangements for parks and green spaces (PF, January/February 2017). As the only UK charity protecting and improving parks and recreation spaces, Fields in Trust has called for them to be revalued...
Going off Plan?
It's not very often that the government admits to getting something wrong. However, by calling its long-awaited housing white paper Fixing our Broken Housing Market, there was at least a partial admission that maybe the government's record on housing...
Greek Bailout Talks Stall
Deadlock intensified over Greece's third, euro86bn (£73bn) bailout deal agreed in 2015 as European leaders hit back at the "pessimistic" outlook of the International Monetary Fund.The deepening rift over how far Greece needs to go with tax increases...
Greens Set out Call for Budget for All
* Ministers should stop trying to impose their will on Scotland's Budget, and accept a process that takes better account of Holyrood's tendency for minority government, the co-leader of the Scottish Greens has told PF.Patrick Harvie called for a much...
How to Overcome Resistance to Change
All too often, we are told that change is the only constant in today's business environment, so it makes sense for organisations to expect managers to be adept at helping to make it happen and at supporting people through the process.In the public sector,...
In Brief
HOUSINGWales to fund future model housingThe Welsh Government is providing funding for innovative models for homes that, for example, could be built quickly or use little energy. Over the next two years, £20m will be available to support new types of...
Leading Role
The size and breadth of the government's finance function makes it a unique place to work. With around 10,000 people working in 39 organisations, responsible for over £750bn expenditure a year, it\ operates at a scale greater than most private sector...
LGA: Care Act Duties Require Extra Cash
Local authorities have warned that a series of fl agship social care reforms introduced in 2015 will fail unless the government boosts funding for their services.The Local Government Association has said underfunding of the Care Act - which sets a new...
Local Direction for US Infrastructure
President Trump's choice for secretary of transportation, Elaine Chao, was quickly confi rmed by the Senate, yet we have few details about his infrastructure plans. From the little we know, it appears Trump will focus on local control of spending and...
Mapping the Maze
The year 1974 was marked by the three-day week, two general elections and the opening of the fi rst McDonald's in Britain.It was also a landmark year for local government, with a major reorganisation taking place across England. In addition to redrawing...
Multi-Region Player
For some free marketeers, the very mention of "industry" and "national strategy" in the same breath evokes memories of the seemingly dreadful, interventionist 1960s and 1970s. Subsequent generations have been raised believing this period represented...
Numbers Game
Floral notesHMRC has spent at least £8,500 over three years sending flowers to customers to apologise for mistakes such as incorrect demands or incomplete rebates, The Times has reported. HMRC said a decision to send flowers depended on the effect of...
Protect Your Data from Cyber Criminals
Cybercrime is one of the greatest threats facing organisations around the world, with its annual worldwide cost estimated at $445bn, according to the World Economic Forum's Global Risks Report 2016.While the rise in cybercrime is a global trend, the...
Real-Time Tax May Open Local Doors
Scrapping the annual tax return by 2020 and introducing real-time, online tax accounts will make HMRC one of the most digitally advanced tax administrations in the world. It is estimated this will also raise an extra £600m a year. The Making Tax Digital...
Restructure the Treasury, Says Kerslake Review
Former civil service chief Lord Kerslake has called for the Treasury's fi nancial management capabilities to be strengthened to tackle what he called "professional economists trying to be amateur accountants" in government.In a review of the ministry's...
Revamp for Budget
The return of minority government to Scotland in 2016 meant budget setting both benefited and suffered. Derek Mackay, the cabinet secretary for finance and the constitution, had to rely on the Scottish Green Party to get his budget approved as the SNP...
Tap More Talent for Better Services
The target of apprentices making up 2.3% of the public sector workforce should be scrapped, the Institute for Fiscal Studies has said, concerned that a drive for quantity could affect quality.The 2.3% target is somewhat arbitrary, equating to 200,000...
UK Could Claim EU Assets, Says CIPFA Chief
Th e UK may continue to contribute to the EU budget even after Brexit, the government's white paper has confi rmed.In a document published on 2 February, minsters set out 12 priorities for the negotiations to leave, which will begin once prime minister...
UK Likely to Pay to Access EU Schemes
The UK may continue to contribute to the EU budget even after Brexit, the government's white paper has confi rmed.In a document published on 2 February, minsters set out 12 priorities for the negotiations to leave, which will begin once prime minister...
Update for Codes as Landscape Shifts
Sustained austerity and the growth of localism have affected how public services are provided, with innovative delivery models and partnership working giving rise to a range of risks to manage.Risk management is at the heart of the Treasury Management...
What's Going on in Audit and Regulation
CARE QUALITY COMMISSION* Th e chief inspector of hospitals, Sir Mike Richards, stepped down from his role at the Care Quality Commission at the end of January, after four years in post.A CQC statement said he had introduced a more rigorous, expert-led...
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