Skip to main content

Grant-Related Expenditure

Volume 130: debated on Monday 21 March 1988

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the studies into alternative or improved methods of calculating grant-related expenditure which have been funded by his Department since January 1980; and if for each study listed he will give (a) the name of the body or bodies undertaking the study, (b) the terms of reference of the study, (c) the names of other bodies tendering for the study, (d) the criteria by which the successful applicants were selected, (e) the cost of the study and (f) the outcome of the study.

The following studies into grant-related expenditure assessment have been funded by my Department since January 1980:

  • 1. (i) 'Grant Related Expenditure Assessment: A Review of the System and Potential Development In It'.
  • (ii) Conducted by the School for Advanced Urban Studies at the University of Bristol.
  • (iii) A comprehensive general review of the system seeking to clarify the objectives and underlying principles of GRE, and to evaluate how far the system developed in practice measured up to these objectives and principles. Followed by in depth case studies examining the case for, feasibility and implications of alternative methods of GRE assessment in relation to particular components of local authority expenditure. The four case studies dealt with recreation, adult education, capital finance and public transport.
  • (iv) Cost: £38,300.
  • (v) Outcome: Published Reports (1983–84) of the overall review of the GRE system and of each of the four case studies.
  • 2. (i) The 'Measurement of Inter Authority Cost Differences'.
  • (ii) Conducted by Cambridge Economic Consultants.
  • (iii) The objective of the project was to investigate whether and how to extend and improve the existing system for unit cost adjustments such that it covered authorities outside the London Weighting area and inputs other than labour.
  • (iv) Cost: £16,000.
  • (v) Outcome: Unpublished Report (1983).
  • 3. (i) Development of the Grant Related Expenditure Assessment for Personal Social Services for the Elderly.
  • (ii) Conducted by the Centre for Health Economics, York University.
  • (iii) The objectives of the research arc to assess the feasibility of the main options for improving the method of calculating PSS GRE for the elderly; to then develop a more simple and comprehensible method of assessment whilst taking full account of the requirement to adequately reflect variations in needs between authorities; and to consider and report on the future stability of the new methodology as well as its effective presentation.
  • (iv) Cost: £36,566.
  • (v) Outcome: The research is still in progress.
  • 4. (i) `Review of Statistical Methods Used to Construct Indicators of Social Disadvantage'.
  • (ii) Conducted by Professor Bartholomew, London School of Economics.
  • (iii) The objectives of the research are to review the methods of constructing composite measures of disadvantage at present used in GREs; to examine the applicability of new developments in the construction of such indexes; and to recommend the most appropriate of these statistical techniques.
  • (iv) Cost: £3,000.
  • (v) Outcome: The research is still in progress.
  • Four organisations tendered for the second of these projects; the measurement of inter-authority cost differences. These were Cambridge Economic Consultants, Coopers and Lybrand and Associates Ltd, Peat Marwick Mitchell and Co. and the Public Sector Economics Research Centre at the University of Leicester. The contract was placed on the basis of price and of quality of tender proposal. The other three research contracts were placed on a single tender basis.