buildings and estates if Prudential borrowing schemes are used instead of
'What is becoming clear is that local authorities will be unable to use the
much promoted Prudential borrowing scheme when it is introduced in April
together with the Schools Fund. This means that local authorities are being
railroaded down the PPP route.
'This is blatantly unfair and reflects the government's obsession with the
extremely expensive PPP investment option for schools.
'Prudential borrowing was announced before the 2003 council elections as a
pre-election promise but is turning out to be a hollow option for school
'It also calls into question how the Schools Fund allocation will be used
and whether it will all be pumped into the PPP projects instead of finding
its way into much needed investment in non PPP schools.
'We need a level playing field to allow real and fair investment options for
local authorities so that they can provide value for money for tax-payers
and good school conditions to help the education of pupils, unhindered by
the strait-jacket of national government restrictions.
'I am determined to pursue this issue in parliament in an attempt to ensure
that local authorities are not forced into PPP projects by the Scottish
Executive for fear of a lack of adequate funding in schools across
S2W-3583 - Fiona Hyslop (Lothians) (SNP): To ask the
Scottish Executive whether it will be open to local authorities to direct
resources from their schools fund allocations towards supporting prudential< p/="">borrowing, where such borrowing relates to the school estate.
Answered by Peter Peacock (18 November 2003): It is not open to local
authorities to use schools fund resources to support the cost of direct
council borrowing for capital investment.
S2W-3582 - Fiona Hyslop (Lothians) (SNP): To ask the Scottish Executive
whether it intends to continue to make resources available to local
authorities through the schools fund beyond 2005-06.
Answered by Peter Peacock (18 November 2003): Local authorities' shares of
the schools fund are confirmed up to 2005-06. However, we recognise that
improving and maintaining school buildings is a long-term issue and have
indicated that we intend that substantial resources will continue to be
available over the long term for work on the school estate.