Wednesday, 20 October 2010

First thoughts on CSR...

I am pleased with the outcome of today’s CSR and think that the ‘quad’ did a good job in very difficult circumstances. In the opening paragraph CSR it states that, “The Coalition Government  inherited one of the most challenging fiscal positions in the world,” which I think we all have to remember.

It continues: “Last year, Britain’s deficit was the largest in its peacetime history – the state borrowed one pound for every four it spent. The UK currently spends £43 billion on debt interest, which is more than it spends on schools in England. As international bodies such as the IMF and OECD have noted, reducing the deficit is a necessary precondition for sustained economic growth. Failure to take action now would put the recovery at risk and place an unfair burden on future generations.”

I am pleased that the NHS is protected and that £2bn is being out in for social care. I am also happy that a pupil premium is being introduced to support the poorest school children.

Main announcements of CSR today:
  • 490,000 public sector jobs likely to be lost
  • Structural deficit to be eliminated by 2015
  • £7bn in additional welfare budget cuts & £2bn in universal credit.
  • Police funding cut by 4% a year
  • Retirement age to rise from 65 to 66 by 2020
  • Additional £2bn in capital spending
  • NHS budget protected; £2bn extra for social care
  • Permanent bank levy
  • Winter fuel allowance, free bus passes and TV licences for over-75 kept
  • 24 quangos axed
  • Ring-fencing of local authority grants to end
  • Social housing reform with the aim to build 150,00 new affordable homes
  • BBC licence fee frozen for 6 years (equivalent to a 16% cut for them)
  • RAF & Navy to lose 5,000 jobs; Army to lose 7,00 and MoD to lose 25,000 civilian staff
  • Schools to get a real term increase in funding
  • Police cut by 4%
  • Overseas aid budget to be protected and to rise to £11.5bn to meet UN commitment.
  • Aid to China and Russia to stop.
  • New 1,500 capacity prison scrapped but £1.3bn capital investment in prisons
  • Introduction of a fairness premium worth £7.2bn to support the poorest children

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