In this section:

Comprehensive Spending Review confirmed 30/07/2020 Labelled as Consultation, Finance

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has announced arrangements for the delayed Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) of Government budgets.  The review will set UK Government departments' resource budgets for the years 2021/22 to 2023/24 and capital budgets for the years 2021/22 until 2024/25, and devolved administrations' block grants for the same period.


He said that the CSR will prioritise:


  • strengthening the UK's economic recovery from COVID-19 by prioritising jobs and skills
  • levelling up economic opportunity across all nations and regions of the country by investing in infrastructure, innovation and people - thus closing the gap with our competitors by spreading opportunity, maximising productivity and improving the value add of each hour worked
  • improving outcomes in public services, including supporting the NHS, and taking steps to cut crime and ensure every young person receives a superb education
  • making the UK a scientific superpower, including leading in the development of technologies that will support the Government's ambition to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050
  • strengthening the UK's place in the world
  • improving the management and delivery of our commitments, ensuring that all departments have the appropriate structures and processes in place to deliver their outcomes and commitments on time and within budget.


There is no set spending envelope for the Review, but the Chancellor confirmed that departmental spending (both capital and resource) will grow in real terms across the CSR period and that the Government will deliver on the commitments made during the Budget announcement to level up and invest in the priorities of the British people. However, he made it clear that, given the impact COVID-19 has had on the economy, there will need be tough choices in other areas of spending.


As part of their preparations for the CSR, Government departments have been asked to identify opportunities to reprioritise and deliver savings. Departments will also be required to fulfil a series of conditions in their returns, including providing evidence they are delivering the Government's priorities and focussing on delivery.


No date has been confirmed for the conclusion of the Review, but it is expected to be around the end of September. The Government opened a process for the CSR to allow external stakeholders to submit representations. Representations on the CSR must be made by 24 September and ARCH is working towards making a joint submission with the National Federation of ALMOs early in September. 


ARCH would like to hear from member councils about their main priorities for inclusion in the ARCH submission. Views and comments should be submitted to Matthew Warburton, ARCH Policy Adviser  by the end of August.


Full details of the Chancellor's announcement can be found on the Government's website.


Like emailLink
ARCH Member Comments 0 people like this