We have been sent a coy of the Spending Review, outlining plans for the East Midlands this year. A lot of it is usual polit-speak by the Coalition Government but does give an insight into what we can expect.
As far as Infrastructure is concerned, capital programmes being supported in our area are:
. M1 - replacing a viaduct carrying the M6 over the M1
. M1 - hard shoulder running and variable speed limits between junctions 28 and 31;
. A46 - improvements between Newark and Widmerpool.
The Review announces a £5,000 incentive for the purchase of electric vehicles coupled with the roll out of electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Electric vehicle manufacturers based in the East Midlands may benefit from the introduction of these measures.
"The Local Growth White Paper will outline outline in more detail key initiatives to support growth locally and in the regions, including:
£1.4 billion Regional Growth Fund over 2011-12, 2012-13, and 2013-14. This will provide support for projects that offer significant potential for sustainable economic growth and can create new private sector employment, particularly in those areas currently dependent on the public sector, helping them to make the transition to private sector led growth and prosperity,tax Increment Financing, which will enable local authorities, including potentially those in the East Midlands, to borrow against locally raised business rates; and
"Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPS) which will provide the strategic leadership in areas and set out local economic priorities. LEPs will play a pivotal role in delivering the Government's aim for an economy "rebalanced" towards the private sector.
"In total, local authorities will have greater control over more than ?7 billion of funding from 2011-12 which is moving into Local Government formula grant, being unringfenced or is new funding for the SR10 period, so enabling them to better meet local communities' needs; and
"Reducing barriers to effective joint working by establishing the first Community Budgets in 16 local areas, including Leicestershire, and Lincolnshire, from April 2011. Pooled departmental budgets will help councils and their partners to work together to support families with complex needs. All places may be able to operate these approaches from 2013-14."
The writer of this Review tells us that we must tackle the problems now. I think we all know this must be done, after the disaster that was the Labour administration. What people need though is fairness. Help the genuine needy while curbing benefit spongers, tax in proportion to wealth, get out of the EU and cut overseas aid. The public will not easily forgive any more money squandering!