LGiU response: Chancellor’s Autumn statement
Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive at the LGiU said:
“This was not the slash and burn budget many feared. The Chancellor was keen to emphasise that public spending cuts would be at half the rate of the last Parliament and there were middle England give aways on museums, sport and policing levels. Nonetheless, we are still looking at significant year on year reductions in public spending.
The Chancellor can use the Spending Review to try and change the size of the state, but only local government can help him change the shape of the state.
It’s no good building houses unless you are also building communities. Housing needs to be linked to planning, social care, economic development and public service reform. Only local government can link these up in an effective and democratic way. That’s why devolution matters.
Money for the local growth fund, the abolition of uniform business rates, the ability to spend the proceeds of asset sales and devolution deals on transport, planning and infrastructure are all good things and the Chancellor should be praised for them but they are only a first step. A ring fenced precept for social care is hardly localist.
If we are to realise the Government’s ambition for a country that spends less but to greater effect, we need fuller and faster devolution to give every part of the country complete control over public services and over public finances.”
Notes to editors
LGiU’s full briefing on the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement is available here.
Our Devolution Road Map outlines proposals to invert the current relationship between central and local government by creating a locally led process of devolution in England, which would strengthen local economies and improve public services.
More detailed analysis from the LGiU, ahead of the CSR, on ConservativeHome here.
The Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) is a think tank and membership body with over 200 councils and other organisations subscribing to our networks. We work to strengthen local democracy and put citizens in control of their own lives, communities and local services. For more information, visit lgiu.org.