Public Finance

Articles from December

Action Stations
the government ict Strategy published last March is an easy to read and concise document (Smart Thinking?, May 2011). By contrast, the ICT Strategic Implementation Plan, published in October, is harder to read because it contains lots of milestones,...
Agreeing Not to Differ
Labour's historic remedy of state intervention to the economy is the only key political difference with the Conservatives. So why isn't it advocating such a policy?Ed Miliband is trying to nudge it open a bit, but the gap between Britain's big political...
All Fired Up?
Working in the public sector today is a bit like taking part in The Apprentice. Finance staff face a range of trials and tribulations and need good skills to copeAS ? WRITE, the YoungApprentice TV series is halfway through. What, you might ask, has this...
All in This Together
sovereign debt is an accident waiting to happen.Although the roots of the crisis lie elsewhere, the problems have been exacerbated by both regulatory and accounting failures. This has been vividly illustrated in Greece, where government statistics on...
Autonomy 'Threat' to Finances
Independence or fiscal autonomy would leave Scotland's public finances at the mercy of falling North Sea oil and gas output and their volatile prices, a leading economist has told Public Finance.John McLaren, senior researcher at Glasgow University's...
Brief
CAMPBELL CHRISTIE DIESSalmond hails 'giant' of ScotlandCampbell Christie, who chaired the Commission on the Future Delivery of Public Services in Scotland, has died at the age of 74. Christie, who had been battling cancer, was general secretary of the...
Coming Up
STOCK QUESTIONSThe National Audit Office is considering how cost-effectively the Ministry of Defence manages its equipment and supplies to support its activities around the world. The study will look at the whole cycle of equipment and supply management,from...
Councils Wary of 'Tax Freeze' Cash
The government is likely to fail in its attempt to freeze the council tax across England for a second year after local authorities revealed concerns about the proposal.One authority has already confirmed that it plans to raise the tax, despite last month's...
Housing Benefit Cut May Cost More, Experts Warn
Plans to cut £490m from the annual welfare bill by capping Housing Benefit for social housing tenants with spare rooms could end up costing the government money, experts have warned.Housing professionals and think-tanks told Public Finance that the proposals,...
How to Harvest Work Knowledge
All staff learn as they do their jobs, building up individual mines of useful information. But sometimes it stays inside them instead of being shared more widely - and they take it with them when they leave the organisation. Ann McFadyen explains how...
Numbers Game
PF's monthly roundup of statistics covering the public finances, economic growth, unemployment and moreThe crisis in the eurozone has seen off two prime ministers and created fear and loathing across member countries. But, despite its retention of the...
Occupying Common Ground
The protesters camping outside St Paul's Cathedral m London are voicing the views of many people - and pointing the way towards real local democracyWhat has the Occupy movement outside St Paul's Cathedral and other places got to do with the work of the...
Open for Business?
reforming public services has been up there, as an aspiration and a mission statement, for more governments than most of us care to remember. Openness, choice, citizen-empowerment - Whitehall is littered with the detritus of ambitious public sector reform...
Passing the Buck
COMMUNITIES SECRETARY ERIC Pickles appears to have united local government in England over proposed changes to council funding. At first, his plans to localise business rates and replace Council Tax Benefit with local schemes were greeted with optimism....
Power to the People, Cautiously
THE COALITION GOVERNMENT'S plans for greater community involvement in local services will require councils to work in different ways with the public, with attendant risks.However, according to our latest report with the Local Government Information Unit,...
Regions Are Stuck in the Doldrums
The government demolished regional development agencies in the Mink of an eye after announcing their abolition last year. But its Regional Growth Fund, revealed at the same time, is still struggling to get off the ground 15 months laterThe Regional Growth...
Responses to Blogs and News on Publicfinance.Co.UK
Pension strikeUnison's vote for action on November 30 provoked mixed reactionsCC: 30% of Members vote, 77% of those say yes. So 23% of members actually want to strike and that's overwhelming?-> IAN SPEED: A77% vote in favour is overwhelming compared...
The Wrong Sort of Recession
Britain is experiencing a different type of downturn, based on an asset price bubble. It requires, in turn, a different response involving public investment in infrastructurePoor George Osborne. When he took on the job of chancellor the narrative seemed...
Things Fall Apart
In the past few weeks, Europe's political class might have felt inclined to follow Bertolt Brechfs famous advice for beleaguered governments: dissolve the people, and elect another.Some, it could be argued, are already well advanced down this road. No...
Two Becomes One
ON NOVEMBER I, DEREK MYERS became chief executive of the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham. Nothing unusual in that - except that he also holds the same post at neighbouring Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea.Myers is the first chief...
Two Questions, One Winner
Alex Salmond's choice of options for the Scottish referendum in 2014 has already - barring disaster- ensured success for the SNPUnionists in Westminster have been regrouping as realisation has dawned that First Minister Alex Salmond may be planning a...
Watchdog Watch
WHAT'S GOING ON IN THE WORLD OF REGULATION AND INSPECTIONCare Quality CommissionThe Care Quality Commission has criticised an Essex NHS trust for the continuing 'unacceptably high' risk of poor care at its two hospitals.The health care regulator urged...
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