Hopes for funding from Government spending review

Farewell to Geoff Rivers St Eds chief executive. ''FL; Alex Wilson, John Griffith, Sandra Pell, Geoff Rivers and MP Matthew Hancock.
Farewell to Geoff Rivers St Eds chief executive. ''FL; Alex Wilson, John Griffith, Sandra Pell, Geoff Rivers and MP Matthew Hancock.
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St Edmundsbury Council leader John Griffiths says he is hoping the borough will benefit from some of the infrastructure funding which was due to be announced yesterday.

While the borough has to find a saving of £1.7million in 2015/16 under the Government’s Spending Review it

is hoping the town will benefit from infrastructure funding announced today.

The major announcement is the upgrade to the A14 between Huntingdon and Cambridge which was confirmed as was funding to enable more people to buy homes and the provision of money for more affordable housing.

On gthe housing fron there is funding for the Help to Buy equity loan scheme and subsequent mortgage guarantees to enable people to get onto the housing market. Some 165,000 more affordable homes are planned in the next three years and the Government also announced a £1bn loan financing scheme to support new build private rented homes between now and 2016.

Since April local authorities can retain half of the business rates raised locally and this will build on the New Homes Bonus, which provides funding for local authorities based on the homes that are built in their areas. Some £400 million from the New Homes Bonus will be pooled within Local Enterprise Partnership areas to support strategic housing and economic development priorities which will have a welcome impact on St Edmundsbury’s Vision 2031 housebuilding projection.

Danny Alexdander in making the announcement also confirmed a further £250 million investment, locally match-funded, to extend superfast broadband provision so that 95 per cent of UK premises will have access to superfast broadband by 2017.

Cllr Griffiths said today: “While the additional spending review cuts are tough, we welcome the accompanying announcement about new infrastructure funding and we will be doing everything possible to make sure that West Suffolk benefits. We have a list of schemes ready to go that will boost growth in the borough. Investment in A14 junction capacity will help unlock the creation of 14,000 jobs with the Suffolk Business Park, infrastructure funding for the Haverhill Research Park will help create another 2,000 jobs, and funding for housing will help deliver the communities’ aspirations as described in Vision 2031. We will be working with our partners to take every advantage we can of these opportunities”

Speaking on BBC Look East, Cllr Grifiths said: “We have a long history of making savings, restructuring and freezing Council Tax before it was fashionable to do so.

“We are facing the challenges and preserving the prosperity of our residents while fostering economic growth. That is why we are looking forward to getting a better share of these infrastructure measure,” he added.