Urban Development Grant in Action
Examples of urban development grants illustrate how they are used to rehabilitate rental housing in the United Kingdom. Two developments in the North Shields/Percy Main district of North Tyneside, Hunters Close and Murray Close were having great difficulty in letting their apartments. The Council sought to improve the property, but the cost was very high. In 1982, when Urban Development Grant was announced, a proposal was written designed to provide low-cost housing to first-time buyers as well as to improve the environment in the area. The Council could not afford the level of support needed by itself, so it applied to the department for a grant. The application included the proposal, evidence of reasonable costs, firm private sector financial commitment, provisions for repayment and other factors to evaluate its feasibility. The stigmatization of the developments was a concern that the developers tried to propose overcoming by renewing with higher quality materials. Reasonableness of costs is a factor that the department judges grant applications on. Disagreements, however, were concerning selling price. The clawback clause, allowing the price to increase faster than inflation but sharing profits fifty/ fifty with the public sector, was negotiated. The application was accepted in February 1983. Based on experiences the local authorities feel that a corporate approach in the planning process was beneficial. Guidelines for obtaining approval for an Urban Development Grant are outlined.
Publication Name: Public Finance and Accountancy
LSE grant dilemma
Allegations of a conflict of interest involving a grant to be given by the Chartered Accountants' Trustees of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) to the accountancy department of the London School of Economics (LSE) could turn into a full-blown fight if it is not addressed promptly. The conflict involves Sir Michael Lickiss, who is chairman of both the Trustees and the LSE's Finance Committee. Grants are given to academic research projects usually chosen by the ICAEW's Research Board following a tendering process and a careful evaluation of both the applicants and their proposed projects. However, it was leaked to the media that the LSE grant was awarded without the tendering process. The ICAEW is scheduled to meet with Lickiss to clarify the matter.
Publication Name: Accountancy
After New Cross, Why No Action?
Building societies in the United Kingdom are over competing; working with low margins and high operating costs. New Cross is a society that pursued this course which caused its downfall. Regulations need to be developed to prevent the repeat of the New Cross situation since many societies are under similar conditions to those which caused its trouble. Policing should be increased adequately. Improved accounting and auditing standards need to be undertaken as well.
Publication Name: Accountancy
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