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LGA express concerns about Sure Start Cash

31 October 2012

The Local Government Association (LGA) has warned that proposals to top-slice funding for disadvantaged children in England could backfire.

Currently the Early Intervention Grant (EIG) is paid by central government to local authorities (LAs) to support early years and family intervention programmes, including Sure Start Centres, parenting support and short breaks for disabled people. Under the proposals, which followed a 12 week consultation, the £2.3 billion grant will no longer be paid to LAs in the form of a separate grant, the cash instead being held centrally. Of the total grant £1.3bn will go to a ring fenced schools grant to pay for free nursery care for two year olds; £300m will be top-sliced by the DfE; and the remainder will be rolled into councils' central revenue stream.

Councils are concerned that the changes could lead to a 20% reduction in early intervention at a local level. If these fears are realised, this could have a serious impact on LA’s ability to deliver early intervention services.

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