Magazine article Public Finance

Round-Up

Magazine article Public Finance

Round-Up

Article excerpt

* More councillors are signing up to the national code of conduct promoted by the Standards Board for England. Councillors and council officers recognise the importance of high standards to local democracy, the board said, with 95% supporting the need for members to sign up to the code. In addition, 89% believed their own authority was doing a good job in upholding standards. Board chair Robert Chilton said: This is a very encouraging set of results. At a time when public trust in politicians is under serious challenge, and standards matter more than ever, they show that local government is leading the way, embracing the high standards of conduct, transparency and accountability.'

* MPs have criticised the Department for Culture, Media and Sport for failing to keep a firm grip on the cost of maintaining occupied royal palaces. Public Accounts Committee chair Edward Leigh said: 'The Royal Household, to whom day-to-day responsibility has been delegated, think that it would cost £32m to address the backlog of maintenance work. In truth, neither the household nor the department really knows how big the problem is or what to do about it." The PAC report, Maintaining the occupied royal palaces, published on June 2, said that visitor income could be used to top up maintenance budgets.

* The Bank of England has adopted a new governance regime. The Court of the Bank of England, which oversees the operation of the Bank, has been reduced in size from 19 to 12 members, the majority of whom must be non-executives. This was a result of the 2009 Banking Act and was put in place on June 1. Trades Union Congress general secretary Brendan Barber and Financial Services Authority chair Lord Turner will continue to serve as members of the Court. New appointees include Antonia Horta-Osorio, chief executive of Abbey National, and Mark Tucker, outgoing chief executive of Prudential. …

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