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6 Jun 2005 : Column 404W—continued

Housing Market Renewal Pathfinder

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the (a) financial allocation and (b) out-turn expenditure of each of the Housing Market Renewal Pathfinder areas in England was in 2004–05. [732]

Yvette Cooper: The details of the financial allocation and actual out-turn for Market Renewal Pathfinders for 2004–05 are set out in the following table:
£ million

Urban Living (Birmingham Sandwell)14.85013.649
Elevate (East Lancashire)22.84022.840
Hull and East Riding2.6402.640
Manchester Salford44.00044.000
Newheartlands (Merseyside)34.35034.350
Bridging NewcastleGateshead28.00028.000
Renew (North Staffordshire)7.0007.000
Oldham and Rochdale17.15017.150
Transform South Yorkshire27.40027.400

Local Government Finance

Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what safeguards his Department (a) recommends to and (b) imposes upon local authorities to ensure probity and transparency when publicly-owned assets are sold. [1345]

Mr. Woolas: Asset management guidance for local authorities is non-statutory and sets out in broad terms features of good management of assets. It does not cover issues of probity and transparency as authorities have an obligation to ensure that financial transactions comply with the law. Ultimately questions of probity in financial transactions are a matter for the District Auditor.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will list the (a) specific grants and ringfenced funding streams, (b) special grants and (c) non-ringfenced grants which the Government (i) allocated to local authorities in 2004–05 and (ii) expects to allocate in 2005–06. [1114]

Mr. Woolas: The following table lists all grants allocated to local authorities in England in 2004–05 and grants allocated so far in 2005–06 within Aggregate External Finance (AEF) in addition to Revenue Support Grant and National Non-Domestic Rates. There are other grants outside AEF but these are not provided for an authority's core services and relate, in the main, to areas of funding which are passed on by local authorities, such as Learning and Skills Council grants for adult education and sixth forms.
6 Jun 2005 : Column 405W

Amount (£ million)

Grants made under section 31 of the Local Government Act 2003
Excellence in Cities260.6355.3No
Excellent and 3(50) Education30.550.1No
Teachers Pay Reform0.0908.4No
Choice Protects33.060.0Yes
Adoption Support and Special Guardianship23.032.0Yes
Safeguarding Children90.090.0No
Teenage Pregnancy Local Implementation32.432.4Yes
Change Fund7.08.0No
Waste Re-cycling Challenge90.045.0Yes
Waste Targeted Grant20.00.0No
Waste Performance and Efficiency Pt. 10.040.0No
Waste Performance and Efficiency Pt. 20.05.0Yes
Fire Transitional Funding28.30.0Yes
Fire Pay Verification0.80.0Yes
New Dimension Crewing0.016.0No
LFEPA Civil Contingencies0.00.6No
Planning Delivery130.0116.0No
Planning Delivery (Capital)32.539.0No
Supporting People Administration48.140.0No
Rural Bus Subsidy51.053.0No
Homelessness Strategies45.442.9No
Homelessness Strategies (Capital)14.00.0No
Private Finance Initiative429.0425.0No
Neighbourhood Renewal Fund450.0525.0No
LPSA Reward Grant(50)101.0196.0No
LPSA Reward Grant (Capital)(50)126.0233.0No
Arson Control Forum4.34.2No
Community Fire Safety Innovation Fund1.52.0No
Home Fire Risk Check (Capital)5.05.0No
Grants made under other specific powers
Standards Fund (excluding Excellent/3(50))1,316.01,402.7Yes
Sure Start General Grant363.5446.1Yes
Sure Start General Grant (Capital)40.1306.5Yes
Teachers' Pay Reform825.60.0Yes
Leadership Incentive195.9202.1Yes
Education Action Zones37.40.0Yes
Transitional Support121.560.9Yes
School Standards859.1912.0n/a
UASC Leaving Care12.012.0Yes
Carers Grant125.0185.0No
Training Support53.30.0No
Improving Information Management (Capital)25.025.0Yes
National Training Strategy31.087.9No
Preserved Rights458.3348.2No
Residential Allowance409.5214.5No
Treatment Foster Care3.03.0Yes
Children's Trusts3.23.2Yes
Regional Development Workers1.01.0Yes
Human Resources Development Strategy23.959.8No
Access and Systems Capacity486.0584.0No
Children and Adolescent Mental Health64.084.8Yes
Young People's Substance Misuse Planning4.54.5Yes
Mental Health133.0132.0Yes
AIDS Support16.516.5Yes
Delayed Discharge100.0100.0No
Police Grant4,167.94,352.6No
Police Grant (Capital)270.0272.0No
Crime Fighting Fund267.0265.1Yes
Rural Policing Fund26.025.6No
Neighbourhood Policing Fund12.033.9Yes
Occupational Health4.74.0No
Police Negotiating Board48.066.0Yes
Basic Command Units48.047.7Yes
London and South East Allowances49.055.0No
London Travel3.03.0No
Community Support Officers39.047.0Yes
Special Constables6.60.0Yes
Street Crime Initiative25.05.0Yes
Reform Deal4.74.0Yes
Neighbourhood Wardens19.08.1Yes
Supporting People1,807.01,714.9Yes
Magistrates Courts371.90.0No
Bus Challenge and Kickstart32.729.0Yes
Community Cohesion Pathfinder0.40.0Yes
GLA General Grant36.337.5No

(50)LPSA Reward Grant—this is the maximum provision as specified in individual councils LPSAs, and allocations" will depend on performance.

6 Jun 2005 : Column 407W

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the average change in total Government grant per capita for (a) district councils, (b) county councils, (c) metropolitan councils, (d) unitary councils,
6 Jun 2005 : Column 408W
(e) London boroughs, (f) fire authorities and (g) police authorities was in England in each year since 1997. [1118]

Mr. Woolas: The information requested is shown in the table.

to 1999–2000
to 2000–01
to 2001–02
to 2002–03
to 2003–04
to 2004–05
London (excluding GLA)
Metropolitan authorities7.
Unitary authorities6.
Shire counties6.
Shire districts1.
Fire authorities3.
Police authorities2.

The data used to calculate the changes are taken from data as reported by local authorities; they are outturn figures for 1998–99 to 2003–04 and budget estimates for 2004–05.

Changes between years may not be valid due to changing local authority responsibilities. For example, the decrease for fire authorities between 2003–04 and 2004–05 is due partly to the lower levels of grant per capita received by combined fire authorities compared with other fire authorities. Before 2004–05 grants were not paid directly to combined fire authorities and so these were not included in the figures for earlier years.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what plans he has to increase the level of local taxation. [1123]

Mr. Woolas: The level of the council tax in the coming financial years will depend on local authorities' spending decisions. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister will work to ensure that improved local services are deliverable within the spending plans for local government. The Government will not hesitate to use the capping powers to deal with excessive increases.

The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is committed to supporting local authorities in delivering improvements in key public services without unacceptable council tax rises. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister will continue to work closely with local government to ensure that levels of central grant are based on a realistic assessment of service commitments pressures faced by local government. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is looking to local authorities to deliver further efficiency savings, and will introduce three-year settlements to provide greater predictability for local authorities.

In the longer term, the Lyons Inquiry is looking to reform the system of local government finance to make it fairer and more sustainable.

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what plans the Government have to introduce unitary local government in England. [362]

Mr. Woolas: At present there are no plans to reorganise local government in England—the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is however aware that there is some interest in unitary local government and will listen carefully to the debate.

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