The Treasury’s plans to abolish regional development agencies has hit the South the hardest
As expected the agencies in the North received the lowest cuts, based on the percentage of their original budget while the East of England Development Agency lost almost a quarter of its funds (see table below).
However details of which capital projects will be scrapped as a result of the cutbacks will not be known until early next week - the responsibility falling on each of the individual RDAs to cancel or renegotiate schemes.
Costs cuts (in percentage order)
East of England Development Agency – £23.3million (22.9 per cent of total budget)
East Midland Development Agency - £28.3million (22.7per cent of total budget)
South East England Development Agency – £28.3million (22.7 per cent of total budget)
South West of England Development Agency - £27.8million (19.5 per cent of total budget)
Yorkshire Forward - £40.3million (18.8 per cent of total budget)
Advantage West Midlands – £37.1 million (18.6 per cent of total budget)
North West Development Agency - £52million (18.2 per cent of total budget )
One North-East – £32.9million (15 per cent of total budget)
Terry Hodgkinson, chair of Yorkshire Forward said: ‘As a network [we] were asked to find £270 million of cuts to their projects and programmes as part of the £6.2 billion reduction in public spending for 2010/11 announced by the Chancellor in May. This is in addition to the £300 million reductions asked of RDAs last year covering the two years from 2009 to 2011.
He added: ‘The Secretary of State has now confirmed that Yorkshire Forward is to make cut’s of £40.27million from its budget of £270million, within this financial year.
‘We will continue to talk with partners as to where the reductions will need to take place and how individual projects will be affected. This will involve both delaying work, and stopping some schemes and initiatives altogether. In some cases, where funds have already been committed, we will need to investigate existing contractual commitments. We will look to minimise the impact on our partners through this difficult period.’
Speculation is already rife about which projects will be immediately ‘stopped’ with schemes such as the already stalled, competition-winning Yorkshire Renaissance Pavilion (pictured) by Lock Rennie looking increasingly likely to be shelved.