My right honourable friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office (Tessa Jowell) has made the following Written Ministerial Statement.
I hereby give notice of the Cabinet Office’s intention to seek an advance from the Contingencies Fund to provide for a deficient net cash requirement.
The Cabinet Office requires an advance in the amount of £99.248 million to meet an urgent cash requirement pending parliamentary approval of the Spring Supplementary Estimate 2009-10.
Of this total, £33 million is required to fund the cash settlement of its prior year creditors and £66.248 million is required to fund resources sought by the Office of the Third Sector in the Spring Supplementary Estimate.
In seeking this advance, it is not the intention of the Cabinet Office to consume resources additional to those sought in the Spring Supplementary Estimate 2009-10.
There are no reasonable grounds to doubt that Parliament is willing to approve the additional net resource and net cash requirements, since the Cabinet Office has received prior agreement from the Treasury.
The Cabinet Office has drawn down from the Treasury’s Consolidated Fund the full amount of net cash requirement voted in the Winter Supplementary Estimate 2009-10 and has disbursed almost all of this funding.
This accelerated pattern of disbursement is caused by the Office of the Third Sector making grant payments to its delivery partners in cases where the funding for these commitments has been approved by the Treasury but the net cash requirement detailed in the Spring Supplementary Estimate will not be voted by Parliament until late March.
If the Office of the Third Sector is unable to make payments to these funds, it will be in breach of contract and, in turn, its delivery partners will be in breach of contract with their third sector partners.
The Cabinet Office will repay the advance to the Contingencies Fund as soon as it has access to draw down additional supply sought in the Spring Supplementary Estimate.
Parliamentary approval for additional resources of £66,248,000 will be sought in a Supplementary Estimate for the Cabinet Office. Pending that approval, urgent expenditure estimated at £99,248,000 will be met by repayable cash advances from the Contingencies Fund.