Guidance

Exceptional financial support for local authorities

Details of support granted to local authorities that have requested exceptional financial support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Applies to England

Documents

Bexley capitalisation direction

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Croydon capitalisation direction

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Eastbourne capitalisation direction

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Luton capitalisation direction

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Nottingham capitalisation direction

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Peterborough capitalisation direction

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Wirral capitalisation direction

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Details

The government has given considerable support to the local government sector to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, a small number of individual authorities have unique circumstances or residual issues that have resulted in unmanageable pressures, and have made the local decision to approach the government to request support.

The government has therefore agreed to provide additional financial support to these authorities on an exceptional basis.

The details of support published above relate to the financial year 2020-21.

A small number of authorities have also requested support in relation to unmanageable pressures in the 2021-22 financial year, either in addition to a request for 2020-21, or just for 2021-22.

The government has agreed support in principle for these authorities, subject to the outcome of an external assurance review. Therefore, the final amount of support may be subject to change. We will publish a final outcome in due course.

The external assurance reviews will provide a detailed assessment of each council’s financial position and financial management with a view to making recommendations where the council can take action to improve. The financial assurance review will be conducted by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

In the case of 3 authorities (Peterborough, Wirral and Slough), the external assurance reviews will look closely at their financial position and governance arrangements, focusing on the councils’ ability to deliver a plan for financial sustainability with policies and procedures in place to ensure robust decision making and accountability.

This decision has been taken in response to wider concerns at the councils, and in the case of Slough this includes recent statutory recommendations issued by auditors. The Secretary of State has appointed a governance reviewer for each authority, and in each case these individuals are former council chief executives with relevant experience and expertise.

Authorities that have requested support for both 2020-21 and 2021-22

Local authority Capitalisation directions agreed for 2020-21 In-principle support agreed in respect of 2021-22
Bexley £3.87m £5.125m
Eastbourne £6.8m £6.0m
Luton £35.0m £14.0m
Peterborough £4.8m £20.0m
Wirral £9.0m £10.7m
Croydon £70.0m £50.0m
Nottingham £20.0m £15.0m

Authorities that have requested support for 2021-22 only

Local authority Capitalisation directions agreed for 2020-21 In-principle support agreed in respect of 2021-22
Copeland - £1.5m
Slough - £15.2m

Authorities that have requested support for 2020-21 only

Local authority Support agreed for 2020-21 In-principle support agreed in respect of 2021-22
Redcar and Cleveland £3.68m -
Published 10 February 2021
Last updated 30 June 2021 + show all updates
  1. Added governance reviewer appointment letters (Peterborough, Wirral & Slough).

  2. Added Redcar and Cleveland grant determination.

  3. Added Croydon and Nottingham capitalisation directions.

  4. Added Wirral capitalisation direction

  5. First published.