Reacting to the Chancellor’s announcement of a one-year spending settlement for Government departments this September to cover 2020-21, Cllr Peter John, Chair of London Councils, said:
“We’re pleased that Government has listened to us and is holding an early Spending Round in September to give some certainty about the overall funding for local government next year.
“However, we still urgently need clarity on whether the broader reforms to local government finance – through the Fair Funding Review and 75 per cent Business Rates Retention – will happen next April.
“It’s essential that the Treasury prioritises local government funding in the Spending Round after a decade of funding reductions – the lives of thousands of vulnerable Londoners who rely on social care services or are homeless depend on it.”
Notes to Editors:
London Councils’ key asks for the one-year spending settlement:
• Increase core funding for local government next year - following a decade which has seen it fall by 63% in real terms.
• Guarantee the continuation of ring-fenced adult social care funding grants (including the Improved Better Care Fund, Winter Pressures funding, and Social Care Support Grant) with inflationary increases.
• Provide new investment in children’s services – London has a shortfall of more than £300 million across High Needs and children’s social care.
• Deliver new funding to tackle London’s homelessness crisis – London has 70 per cent of the total number of homeless households in temporary accommodation in the country and a £170 million unfunded burden.
• Provide social rent certainty over the long term and allow councils to retain Right To Buy receipts to help solve London’s housing crisis.
• Reverse public health funding reductions and provide an urgent increase to make up the lost real terms growth since 2015.
• Address the shortfall in funding for Unaccompanied Asylum-Seeking Children (UASC) care leavers (London had a £32 million funding gap last year, £17 million of which was for UASC care leavers).
• Provide funding for people with No Recourse to Public Funds (on whom London boroughs spend more than £50 million a year but receive no central government funding).