Budget deficit has soared amid pandemic says ONS
Britain’s budget deficit has soared due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic – but figures released by the Office of National Statistics have yet to take in the full effect.
Public sector borrowing set to hit record high
Public sector borrowing as a result of the coronavirus lockdown is set to hit a record 14% of GDP this year but then decline rapidly to the levels predicted in the March Budget, according to the Office for Budget Responsibility.
Buoyant tax income ahead of coronavirus crisis
The last set of public finance figures before the Government’s £350bn injection to combat coronavirus’ economic impact shows a buoyant month for tax income.
£3bn bed blocking coronavirus cash injection
Almost £3bn of the Government’s £5bn Covid-19 funding will go towards freeing up at least 15,000 English hospital beds by the end of next week, the Department of Health and Social Care has announced.
Make councils account for extreme investments
Local government needs a new way to hold councils to account when they are making ‘extreme’ investments, finance expert Rob Whiteman has claimed.
Finding our levels
While austerity could be over 'as a process and a direction', the spending spree may not be quite as generous as it first appears – and there will be more devolution deals to come. Heather Jameson digests the Budget with sector experts.
Local government needs to ‘hold the ring’ on pooled public services’ budgets
Shadow minister for local government Jim McMahon tells Heather Jameson it was irresponsible that the Budget did not mention adult social care – and he says we need an ‘honest assessment’ of councils’ and public services’ funding needs.
Levelling up and the Budget
Lord Bob Kerslake argues that a coherent plan is needed to ensure the Budget’s new capital spending and R&D cash geared at areas outside London and the South East has maximum impact.
God is in the detail
Tony Kirkham says if councils can approach the challenges of COVID-19 with the spirit and professionalism they are renowned for, the sector can move into the detailed analysis to deliver a Spending Review that benefits citizens in the medium-term.
Local government shines at the heart of a crisis
Local government is at the heart of the coronavirus crisis, says Heather Jameson. Despite a decade of cuts, councils still step up, and while the nation focuses on pressures on the NHS, the efforts of care workers will be every bit as vital.
There is still plenty for this Government to ‘get done’
The Budget package does not give councils any certainty over funding for the short to medium term, let alone the long term, and failed to address much-needed reforms to social care, says Solace spokesman for finance Martin Reeves.
Budget 2020: If this is a national crisis it's one many of us felt was already underway
Local agendas should prevail, according to chair of SIGOMA Sir Stephen Houghton – but he says the headline capital aspirations in the Budget seem to harbour real ambition beyond already thriving areas.
Budget 2020: Putting the numbers in perspective
By recent standards the Chancellor’s Budget jokes were pretty good, says Charlotte Alldritt of the Centre for Progressive Policy. But it is time to get serious, if the government is going to deliver on its levelling up agenda.
Budget 2020: Public Works Loan Board consultation is welcome
The Chancellor’s announcement of a consultation on revising the terms of borrowing from the Public Works Loan Board is welcome, says Rob Whiteman - but the Chancellor’s fiscal announcements 'didn’t match what we in the sector had hoped for'.
Budget did not reflect the importance of communities, says NLGN chair
The Budget underplayed the role of individuals and communities, and local areas are ‘now at a point where we need to get community power done’, says the chair of the New Local Government Network (NLGN).
A Budget for growth – so where is the catch?
Chancellor Rishi Sunak's Budget may not have delivered much for council revenues – for adult or children’s social care – but it is squarely aimed at boosting productivity and growth, writes Heather Jameson.
Leaving nothing to chance
The ‘levelling-up’ Budget is era-defining and ambitious in scope – but we will have to wait until the summer Spending Review to understand the blueprint, says Localis’s Jonathan Werran.
Budget 2020: Councils compensated for rates bonanza
The Government has pledged to compensate local authorities for the entire loss of business rates caused by a raft of relief announcements in today’s Budget.
Budget 2020: Sunak gambles on capital spending splurge
Despite volatility caused by coronavirus and a sluggish increase in the economy, the chancellor has decided to gamble that a big increase in capital spending will deliver higher growth and productivity by the next election.
Budget 2020: Mayoral authorities win big in transport
The Government has unveiled £4.2bn for urban transport as part of its spring budget giveaways.