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Ofsted (Contingency Fund Borrowing)

Volume 489: debated on Tuesday 10 March 2009

The Department for Children, Schools and Families has today requested parliamentary approval for additional resources of £20,000,000 for The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted) prior to funding of £20,000,000 from the Spring Supplementary estimate becoming available.

Ofsted requests a repayable cash advance from the contingencies fund as its Spring Supplementary estimate is not due to receive Royal Assent until late March 2009. This timing difference was not factored into cash flow projections. This cash advance is required to meet its contractual obligations to pay suppliers within the required 10 working days. Upon parliamentary approval of the Spring Supplementary, Ofsted will make immediate repayment of the advance to the contingencies fund.

Parliamentary approval for additional resources of £20,000,000 will be sought in a Supplementary estimate for Ofsted. Pending that approval, urgent expenditure estimated at £20,000,000 will be met by repayable cash advances from the contingencies fund.