Underspend, Overspend

Some clarification this morning on the underspend / overspend currently taking place at Colchester Borough Council.

It’s like a BAD Wombles song being played out from the underground burrows of a musty Town Hall in Sunny Colch.

You may remember how we blogged last week about the apparent WE’RE NOT BROKE approach from CBC.

The council papers that we were shown displayed a net UNDERSPEND of £402,900 in the General Fund, and a similar UNDERSPEND of £200,000 in Housing.

Before the budget for the Cllr’s Christmas party goes into overdrive down at Aldi, we need to put something of a brake on these figures.

Cllr Peter Higgins, the LibDem representative for New Town has contacted The Chronic. The good Cllr queried the figures at Scrutiny last night:

“Just to say that I did ask at our Scrutiny Meeting last night about the apparent underspends in the Capital Programme.

I was assured that this is an artefact of the spends not showing up until the bills have been paid, which is why even half way through the financial year, only about 20% of the intended spending is in the right hand column.

I was assured that there are no stalled programmes and in particular the Council House Building programme is a bit ahead of schedule.”

And so good news!

We think.

Spending is on target, work hasn’t stalled, but the bills haven’t been paid.

Ouch.

Hard work this localgov data interpretation.

Calculations on the back of a fag packet spring to mind.