Under the prudential system, local authorities are able to borrow for capital projects, providing they can afford the borrowing costs. Local authorities can choose the source of these funds and they are free to use municipal bonds where they wish to do so.
I thank the Minister for his warm welcome for my second report about the financing of early intervention, entitled “Early Intervention: Smart Investment, Massive Savings”. One of the report’s recommendations was to free up local authorities to issue early intervention social impact bonds in order to fund early intervention in the localities. Will he meet me to discuss how we can take this forward?
I certainly will meet the hon. Gentleman, who has been a pioneer in these matters. I have been very taken with his report’s recommendations. He points to some initiatives taking place in the US to have social impact bonds, and the authorities in London are keen on this, too. I am sure that he will want to continue his campaign; he will find a receptive counterpart in me.