Headlines: December 9th, 2009

The Pre Budget Report presented by the Chancellor gives no indication of the potential efficiency savings that might result from the Total Place initiative. It was expected that the PBR would give something of the flavour of the initiative and possibly a broad indication of benefits. There is, however, a promise that by Budget 2010, the Government will respond to detailed evidence from Total Place about the added value of freeing up front-line services and encouraging collaboration in terms of better services at less cost.

The PBR explains that Total Place counts the total public funding in one place and considers how local organisations can use their combined resources to generate efficiencies and transform local public services. It also describes how bottom-up learning from 13 pilot areas is generating new ideas about how local partnerships can deliver more efficient and effective services.

This low key tone contrasts with details that are emerging from the pilots, see the news from Befordshire Central and Luton and the snapshots presented in ‘Putting the front line first – smarter Government’ . This report quotes findings from Birmingham that for every £1 public services spent on children’s early years intervention, a further £4 would be saved further down the line in the costs of antisocial behaviour and severe health problems. On drugs abuse it was found that each £1 spent on treatment could realise over £9 of savings in the criminal justice system.