In a spending review year, Cities Outlook 2019 explores how local government cuts since 2010 have impacted UK cities, finding that cities have shouldered almost three-quarters of all local government spending cuts.
Not only that, but with an ever-increasing demand for services like social care, cities are dedicating more and more of their spending to these vital services, leaving little room to pursue activity in support of their wider economy.
With the end of austerity in sight, this year’s Cities Outlook looks at how cities have responded to cuts in their spending, and what new avenues for revenue they have been able to explore.
We’ve published the latest data on 63 cities. You can find everything from business starts, to co2 emissions and population on our interactive tool.
The findings from Cities Outlook 2019 show that cities have borne heavy cuts to their budgets in recent years and need a fairer funding deal from 2020. Doing so will enable them to concentrate on supporting their communities and developing their economies, for the good of the national economy as a whole.
Cities Outlook 2019 makes four recommendations as the government prepares for the upcoming Spending Review.
The current model of social care funding is unsustainable. Current pressure and the likely growth in demand means that without significant reform, cities will not be able to deliver other services for their area.
Cities should be able to set and raise council tax rates in line with their needs, as well as introduce other taxes, such as a tourist tax.
Longer-term budgets, that span three to five years, should be set in order to give authorities certainty and flexibility in how they manage their spending.
Cities should have the freedom to decide how to allocate the cash they have raised to improve their services.