Source: London Assembly
The London Assembly Budget and Performance Committee has today published its “Response to the Mayor’s Draft Consultation Budget 2020/21” which highlights areas on which the Committee would like the Mayor to provide further clarity.
The Committee examined the Budget and heard from the Mayor and functional bodies to understand how the Mayor is using his resources to address London’s challenges. The Mayor’s Budget comes amid uncertainty over the funding of the additional police officers promised by the Government, and delays to financial settlements from Whitehall.
The report makes a number of recommendations including:
- The Mayor and TfL need to be much clearer about what TfL capital projects are potentially at risk over the next four years. It is important that they signal to the Government and the public projects that are of a high priority.
- The London Fire Brigade (LFB) should provide in its 2020-21 Budget sufficient resources to fund the start of its transformation.
- The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) needs to make a realistic assumption of additional Government funding and prepare a sustainable plan (revenue and capital) based around this increase, with a clear position on the police estate, before the start of 2020-21. This will allow MOPAC to focus on any underlying funding gap.
- The Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation (OPDC) should publish the Housing Infrastructure Fund bid and conditions before the 2020-21 Budget is approved and refocuses quickly in plans for regeneration.
Len Duvall AM, Deputy Chair of the Budget & Performance Committee, said:
“The Mayor’s final budget for his term in office highlights the significant challenges that London faces and the pressure this will continue to put on City Hall resources.
“It remains uncertain how much funding we will receive from Government to fund the additional police officers they have promised. Londoners will want to know the details of how many police officers they will be seeing as a result of the Government’s promise of an extra 20,000 police officers nationally and we expect them to provide MOPAC with this information as soon as possible.
“The Committee would like to see further clarity on a number of budget proposals, particularly in relation to Transport for London. The Mayor has set TfL an ambitious target of ensuring 80 per cent of journeys are made via walking, cycling or public transport. How this will be achieved, in the context of additional Crossrail costs and further delays, and the reduction in the level of investment in the transport network, is a concern for the Committee.
“Last year, two reports were published that made clear that the London Fire Brigade has significant areas for improvement. We are clear that we want to see sufficient resources in the Budget to ensure that the proposed transformation will succeed.
“The Committee is very aware of the challenges facing the Budget and we urge the Mayor to consider our recommendations before the next version of the Budget is shared with the Assembly.”