Abstracts: November 12th, 2008

The task force report presents findings on ways in which the burdens in economic development and regeneration might be lifted. The term ‘burden’ describes any central government activity which hinders the effective and efficient delivery of services and outcomes at the local level.

In regeneration it is widely recognised that the history of highly fragmented funding arrangements have made it unnecessarily difficult to make the strategic interventions. The review identified how outcomes could be improved through greater clarity on the future availability of funding and more flexibility to move resources to where they would have the most impact. The new National Regeneration Framework should ensure that all economic development and regeneration programmes will take a coordinated approach based on the strategic needs of the local economy.

Other recommendations include encouraging and supporting district and county councils to work together to propose multi area agreements where this would enable more effective place shaping and economic development. In addition the task force believes that Government programmes should move away from monitoring short term outputs and move towards the long term outcomes that stimulate a real lasting impact.

The task force also recommends that Government departments and agencies should give greater recognition to the time and resources required for local authorities to prepare evidence based bids and that the DfT should look for ways of reducing the bureaucratic burdens of the TIF bidding process.

The report is available from Communities and Local Government. http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/507390/pdf/996433.pdf