CCN News 2016 | 23 October 2016
Responding to the Autumn Statement today, Philip Atkins, vice-chairman of the County Councils Network, said:
“We are disappointed that the Chancellor did not deliver additional funding to address the significant funding challenges facing adult social care. The absence of new investment in social care will call into question the sustainability of services and local care markets, to the detriment of vulnerable residents and the ability of the NHS to deliver the Government’s efficiency programme.
“In engaging with the Government, CCN will continue to present evidence on the need to find a long term solution to the growing funding gap.
“The omission of any funding announcements for social care leaves counties – who face the most acute care pressures – facing real uncertainty over the sustainability of services and local care markets. In engaging with the Government, CCN will continue to present evidence on the need to find a long term solution to the growing funding gap.
“But elsewhere, the Government quite rightly put infrastructure and productivity at the heart of the Autumn Statement. This echoes calls from CCN for a broader, more inclusive economic policy that reaches all four corners of England.
“Our submission made the case for investment in infrastructure, housing and transport in county areas, and we welcome today’s announcements. There are also indications that Government are listening to our specific concerns over Local Growth Fund allocations; we will continue to work with Ministers on this.
“While counties are the largest contributor to the national economy, our areas faced long-term challenges around housing, lower levels of productivity, and growing infrastructure gaps.’
“The Chancellor outlined the impact of unaffordable housing, and pinpointed infrastructure as key to addressing this. It is clear that counties can play a central role in bringing infrastructure and planning together, providing a strategic partnership approach to delivering the houses needed in our areas and the framework to support development.
“Counties’ ability to drive forward long-term growth is exemplified in the hard work of England’s Economic Heartland, and commitments to infrastructure they received today.
“CCN will be working with Government and national partners through the Housing White Paper, National Infrastructure Commission and Industrial Strategy. We believe that these agendas present a real opportunity for counties to drive strategic growth, and seek the powers and infrastructure investment needed to boost productivity and housebuilding.”