Austerity cuts ‘will go on for ten years'
Britain could face a decade of spending cuts, Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood has warned. He has told senior civil servants that they should prepare for their budgets to be reduced for years longer than previously thought. Cabinet Office sources say the comments were directed at the civil service and were not meant to suggest that the wider economy would necessarily face a decade of cuts.
Telegraph p1, Mail p2, Guardian p20, Times p4, Mirror p2, FT p4
Death tax should fund social care
Lord Warner, a member of the Dilnot Commission, yesterday suggested that a 'death tax' should be introduced to meet the soaring cost of elderly care. The Labour Peer also accused the Government of "drifting" on social care reform and suggested that those living in state-funded care homes are in danger of not receiving proper care due to the lack of money. LGA Chairman, Sir Merrick Cockell, has also warned of cutbacks in services like libraries, parks and leisure centres if the situation is not resolved. The LGA will unveil figures next week that will show how hard town halls will be hit financially if the Government fails to act.
Gove to scrap GCSEs
Education Secretary Michael Gove is to scrap GCSE exams after 2015 to accelerate school performance and improve teaching in core subjects. The move is expected to pave the way for more traditional exams modelled on the old O-levels the following year.
Guardian p1, Times p5, FT p4, Telegraph p1, Mail p1, Independent p2
Vulnerable pupils offered boarding school places
Up to 1,000 vulnerable children are to be offered free boarding school places. Three in five local authorities in England have agreed to back a scheme where children from broken homes or whose parents are on the verge of splitting up are offered free places at either private or state boarding school. In all 88 local authorities have pledged to support the scheme.
Independent p2, Times p19
Hole lot of grief – £10 billion backlog in road repairs
Almost a third of roads are so badly potholed they may be a serious danger to motorists, according to statistics from the Department for Transport. One in twenty roads is ‘red flagged' and another quarter need urgent examination. The cost of the backlog is put at £10 billion.
Council's £5 million spree
Essex Council has spent £5 million on corporate cards over the past two years on items including trips to theme parks and restaurant meals. A spokesman for the council says the money was mostly spent on materials for children in care.
Pensioner's long sit-in costs council £110,000
A five month long sit-in by a pensioner at an old people's home in Leeds has cost the council an estimated £110,000. The woman refuses to leave the Harry Booth House despite all other residents having moved out at the start of the year and is the only resident in care at the facility. The council says it is working with the woman and her family to try and find alternative accommodation.
Poundland put biscuits chewed by mice back on shelves
Croydon Council served an emergency notice on the Poundland store in the Whitgift shopping centre and banned it from selling food after staff were found to have resealed packets of biscuits after they were gnawed by mice and put them back on sale.
21 June 2012