HC Deb 06 August 1976 vol 916 cc1104-5W
Mr. Newens

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will estimate the amount by which the Government's contribution towards the Essex Education Committee's expenditure will be cut in future years as the result of the recent decision to cut public expenditure.

Miss Margaret Jackson

The Government contribute to local authorities' recurrent expenditure through the rate support grant. The total amount of this grant is decided annually with regard to authorities' collective needs and the prevailing economic climate. The distribution of the total rate support grant is also decided annually. It is therefore not possible to answer the question in the form asked because we cannot know what the rate support grant might have been in future years had circumstances been different. Furthermore, authorities receive block RSG allocations and are free to determine their own spending priorities within these.

The savings announced on 22nd July by my right hon. Friend the Chancellor, in so far as they bear on local authorities will mainly affect capital, not recurrent spending programmes. The consequent reduction in expenditure from revenue or in loan charges will be taken into account in the determination of the total RSG grant.

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