This settlement is very much a stop gap

By Sir Stephen Houghton | 20 December 2021

After this year’s Spending Review, for the first time in several years, government departments received their allocations over a multi-year period, allowing them the certainty to plan for the future. Unfortunately, as we found out last week, this was not the case for local government, despite Core Spending Power figures having been set out in the Review. Not only that, but the settlement itself, as has become a trend in recent years, was published on the afternoon of the last day before parliament went into recess.

In 2018, the government committed, following the Hudson review, to aim to publish the provisional settlement in early December. The extra time for councils to plan was even more important this year given the disruption and uncertainty caused by the pandemic.

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