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Paper 5B - 24 November 2000 Meeting

ASSOCIATION OF HAMPSHIRE AND ISLE OF WIGHT LOCAL AUTHORITIES

24 November 2000

AREA COST ADJUSTMENT

Report by Councillor Brian Palmer, Test Valley Borough Council

1. At the last meeting I was asked to represent the Association at a meeting of South East authorities to retain the Area Cost Adjustment (ACA). The meeting took place on 17 October, facilitated by the Regional Assembly. The Chair of the Regional Assembly has now made representations to the Local Government Association (LGA) on our behalf arguing that the latest earnings survey data should be used in calculating ACA.

2. The LGA has made representations to the Government in favour of using the latest data - in line with the general policy that up to date figures should be used where available.

3. However the latest earnings data not only shows continued wage/salary pressures in the South-East, it also implies a shift of resources to the South-East from elsewhere. The LGA is therefore seeking additional resources for the settlement to protect authorities - outside the South-East - that would lose out from the shift.

4. The Local Government Finance Green Paper does not make any specific proposals about the ACA. There can be no doubt that the formula is under threat and we may need to lobby MPs and others to ensure that the additional costs of being in the South-East are recognised.

5. The Regional Assembly has set up a small all-party working party to continue to monitor the situation.

COUNCILLOR BRIAN PALMER
Test Valley Borough Council

Date: 14 November 2000
Annex: 0
Contact: Nick Goulder - 023 8068 8431, E-mail hiowlang@hants.gov.uk

Last update: 23/11/2000
Author: Nick Goulder, Policy Manager

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