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Proposed States savings cover all departments

02 June 2010

The Council of Ministers are today publishing to Scrutiny proposed savings of £12 million for 2011, as part of the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR). These 2% savings represent the first step in a 3-year programme to save an ongoing £50 million per year, to deal with projected deficits.

The proposed savings will see some reduction in posts – but these should be managed through retirement, redeployment, retraining, vacancy control, and voluntary redundancy.

Ministers are also proposing £3 million worth of investment which is essential and unavoidable – including funding to combat financial crime, to support Jersey Heritage Trust and for hospital services as recommended in the Verita report.

The Treasury Minister, Senator Philip Ozouf, also proposes to create a proper budget for court and case costs, rather than having to ask the States Assembly for extra funds each year.

The Council is proposing to introduce, or increase, some limited charges for services ('user pays'). These charges however cannot be counted as part of the 2% savings proposals.

Ministers and States Members agreed earlier this year that the Island is facing major challenges, which require:

  • a review of those services which are essential or highly desirable
  • a determination to deliver services efficiently
  • a wider implementation of user pays principles
  • tax increases

The Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) is designed to deliver the first 3 elements of this and the Fiscal Strategy Review is designed to deliver the fourth. The final decision on the balance needed of savings and taxes will be a political choice taken later in the year as part of the budget debate.

The Treasury Minister, Senator Philip Ozouf, said “This has been a difficult process but I am pleased that we have succeeded in achieving proposals for the first phase of the CSR. This is the start of a long road in the CSR process. The review is analysing all areas of States spending to find ways to save money, to understand the effects of any proposed savings and to target improvements.

“The CSR is an opportunity to re-assess the public sector’s priorities, to reorganise the way departments work and to make sure we provide the services islanders need in the most efficient way possible.”

There are now 6 major in-depth reviews underway, looking at terms and conditions of employment, court and case costs, Health and Social Services, Education Sport and Culture, Social Security, and Home Affairs. But all States services are being asked to find savings.

The CSR is seeking savings of £50 million from the 2011 - 2013 business plans. Some of these savings will be used to create a contingency fund for unforeseen expenses, to fund any changes needed to make savings and to fund some growth in essential services. Targeting this level of savings will break the historical cycle of annual spending increases above previous forecasts.

The CSR will be complemented by a new 3 year spending control process, which will not only limit unforeseen increases, but encourage greater efficiency and reward those services which are most successful at controlling costs.

Download the Comprehensive Spending Review 2% proposed savings (Size 430kb)

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