Pleading poverty in the run-up to the Budget

By Heather Jameson | 27 September 2017
  • Heather Jameson

Local government has been dominated by financial woes for so long that it has become the new normal. But never is it more at the forefront of the sector’s collective mind than in the run-up to the Budget and the local government finance settlement. Following the chancellor’s hint that he could bring an end to austerity, it’s hardly surprising local government jumped at the chance to respond to the extraordinarily early consultation on the Budget which closed last week, well ahead of the big day.

A week after communities secretary Sajid Javid reiterated his commitment to business rates retention – promising more detail within the finance settlement – the lobby to ensure councils are not the victims of further unpaid Whitehall devolution is intensifying. Former chancellor George Osborne proposed additional local responsibilities in return for the £13bn extra cash initially earmarked for councils under full rates retention.

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Budgets and efficiency Finance Settlement Budget
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