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NO EXTRA CASH FOR WELSH ELECTIONS

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The costs of next year's elections to new unitary authorities in Wales will not be reflected in councils' revenue s...
The costs of next year's elections to new unitary authorities in Wales will not be reflected in councils' revenue support grant settlements, the Welsh Office says. In a letter sent to local authority associations in Wales this week, it also says the estimated £16.5 million costs borne by shadow rather than existing authorities in 1994-95 will be capitalised and funded by borrowing. The Council of Welsh Districts plans to press the Welsh Office to 'think again' on election costs, said assistant secretary Paul Griffiths.

The Welsh Office said no additional resources were generally made available in election years.

The CWD welcomed news that the costs of shadow authorities be capitalised and met from supplementary credit approvals. 'It makes the financing much more transparent', said Mr Griffiths.

The Welsh Office quotes estimated costs of shadows in 1994-95 to be £10.597m plus additional transitional IT costs 'of between £3.211m and £6.019m'. These Touche Ross figures are based on early assumptions of 23 single tier units rather than the 21 currently proposed. They cover members' expenses, staff salaries and enhancements, and administration expenses.
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