The LGA Conservative Group is the national voice for Conservative Local Government. We are here to support both Conservative council groups and Conservative councillors. Conservatives are leading the way in local government, embracing the new localist agenda, protecting frontline services and offering value for money.
Statement from Cllr James Jamieson – LGA Conservative Group Leader
I am pleased that the Government has recognised the financial pressures in local government, with today’s Budget containing a number of positive announcements for councils and for local communities that I strongly welcome. In particular, I would highlight the following as being particularly important:
- an additional £420 million will be made available immediately to local highway authorities to tackle potholes, bridge repairs and other minor works in this financial year. This is likely to be distributed in line with the existing DFT needs formula
- building on the additional £240 million for social care winter pressures that was announced at conference earlier this month, a further £650 million of funding for social care will be made available in 2019-2020. This is expected to be distributed in line with the previous adults formula, of which £240m will be subject to DToC conditions and reporting and £410m which will not be ring-fenced.
- a £400 million in-year one-off capital payment directly to schools - averaging £10,000 per primary school and £50,000 per secondary school.
- a £675 million Future High Streets Fund A £84 million innovation fund spanning five years for children’s services across 20 councils.
- a further £500 million for the Housing Infrastructure Fund to unlock
- the allocation of £200 million of previously announced funding to supercharge the rollout of full fibre broadband in rural areas.
These welcome announcements have been the result of intense work and cooperation across the sector to demonstrate the need for additional funding and the lobbying of MHCLG, HM Treasury and individual MPs. I am particularly grateful to our Secretary of State, James Brokenshire, for listening to our concerns and lobbying his Cabinet colleagues on policy areas ranging from potholes to social care.
While this is very helpful for next year, it is key to have sustainable long-term funding. Both the Social Care Green Paper, which is expected shortly, and next year’s Spending Review, will be crucial in putting local government on a firm long-term financial footing and I look forward to working with you to lobby the Government to ensure that this is the case.