Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Further £30m for South East business growth

Further £30m for South East business growth

LONDON. April 3, 2008/ Local Government Minister John Healey has announced the allocation of more than £30million of funding for over sixty local authorities across the South East today, rewarding their efforts to boost business growth.

The Local Authority Business Growth Incentives scheme (LABGI) delivers financial rewards directly to councils that promote economic growth in their areas, by allowing them to retain a share of increases in revenue derived from business rates. The money is not ring-fenced and is additional to the funding provided through the Local Government Finance settlement for core services. Today's announcement allocates a further share of the up to £1bn of funding available for LABGI in England and Wales.

Councils have made substantial progress in encouraging new business growth. This means authorities will receive nearly £300m of increased funding though this allocation - with potentially a further £100m in the future, which is being retained as contingency.

John Healey said:

"LABGI ensures that every council has a direct financial incentive to promote enterprise, jobs and local business growth, helping them to boost our country's economic potential.

"This £300m is a welcome reward for the hard work they have put into generating prosperity in their areas, and an incentive to continue that strong progress in future.

"This is the final year of the 3-year LABGI scheme and my priority now is reform, with the aim of making it a permanent feature of the council funding system. I plan to publish proposals for consultation later this year".

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