§ Mr. Pike
Does the Minister recognise that council leaders everywhere are worried about the time taken in preparing bids for all those challenge-type schemes? They are fed up with the fact that no extra money is made available for them, they are fed up with the rules continually changing and they are fed up with those schemes not dealing with the urgent priorities of expenditure that exist in many parts of the country.
§ Mr. Curry
I was expecting the hon. Member to make that comment, because he firmly represents old Labour. Whenever we introduce a scheme, local authority leaders say, "This is terrible; it is new, it is innovative. We want to carry on as we always have," and when it works and it delivers they say, "That was a very good scheme indeed; you ought to continue it."
There is new money—the money we bring in from the private sector. That is what is so good about the challenge programme. It adds private sector money to public sector money, and very many Labour local authority leaders throughout the country will benefit from it and are beginning to appreciate the schemes greatly.
§ Mr. Ian Bruce
What sort of money is coming from the private sector? My right hon. Friend noted that local authority leaders always say that they cannot find matching funds and then promptly go off and do just that from completely new, non-public funds. Can he give us an idea of how much that has saved for the taxpayer?