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The Chancellor, George Osborne, has today set out the Government’s spending plans up to 2020.
The Comprehensive Spending Review, which covers all departmental settlements over the next Parliament, includes billions of pounds of public spending cuts, but also shows areas that will receive additional money, including those protected departments.
Rob Whiteman, Chief Executive of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), on the Government’s Comprehensive Spending Review, November 2015:
“Some of the headline announcements, including no cuts to the police and further education, and funding for health and social care, are all welcome signs.
“CIPFA has also called for front loaded funding to the NHS, which was confirmed by the Chancellor earlier. Now, it must be made clear exactly what services he expects the extra cash to cover. That list is getting longer.
“As expected, there was little demonstration of the Government investing now in health to make savings in the long-term. Instead we saw cuts to nurse training grants, a big gamble that future trainees will fund their own education.
“For local authorities, it is encouraging to see the Chancellor has shied away from previous remarks suggesting Councils would be forced to use their reserves.
“As an overview, the Chancellor’s announcement earlier provided many reasons to be cautiously optimistic. But like any similar announcements, the devil will be the detail and, as accountants, we will now be working through the numbers to make sure they add up.
“In support of the Treasury’s work reforming financial management in central government, it is pleasing to see a focus on providing substantial medium- to longer-term planning, something that CIPFA has long championed.”
CIPFA will be issuing a deeper summary of the Chancellor’s announcements in due course.
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