Sunday, February 12, 2006

Recent Bonfires- 3


In the news this week:

£5bn pensions payout- "The government may have to pay more than £5 billion in compensation after a 15-month investigation by the parliamentary ombudsman into the plight of workers who have lost their pensions. A report by Ann Abraham, delivered to the government last month, is understood to accuse ministers and officials of a catalogue of mistakes and of misleading the public and parliament. The report found the government “guilty of maladministration”. The...bill for compensation could be the biggest so far, exceeding the £4 billion paid out over BSE." ( Sunday Times 12.02.06)

£600m pa Arts Council waste- Even Culture Minister David Lammy now agrees: 'It's got to slim down...The record sums of public investment we have made in the arts have not led to a higher profile for the arts in the public's mind'. The body must be 'more than a passive cash machine, doling out money'. The Council blew £581m in 2004/05. ( Observer 12.02.06)

£11m on failed young offenders scheme- "a government study...found no evidence of long-term improvements in the behaviour, literary and numeracy of the young people, or of a reduction in their offending in the year after completing mentoring programmes. Although the chief advantage of the scheme was supposed to be low cost, each one cost between £7,000 and £26,000". ( Times 6.02.06)

Total for the week- £5.6 billions.

PS All three of these areas are notorious for government waste, and we will be returning to them soon.

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