Tom criticises ‘inefficient’ Regional Growth Fund

Tom Blenkinsop MP today (11th May 2012) called for the Public Accounts Committee to look into the handling of the Regional Growth Fund (RGF) following the announcement from the National Audit Office (NAO) that “value for money was not optimised” and the scheme “offered relatively few jobs for the public money invested.”

The regional growth fund could have created thousands more jobs if the government had applied tighter controls the report from the NAO has found.

Tom said:
“The complete mishandling of the Government’s flagship policy to rebalance the economy is endemic of their inability to provide a real growth strategy. When areas like Teesside are crying out for jobs and it turns out that thousands could have been created if the Government weren’t so inefficient there is something seriously wrong.

“The average cost of a job created by RGF is £33,000 – yet for the Regional Development Agencies, like the successful ONE North East, the average was £28,000. So why did the Government cut a well-established system only to replace it with this shambles? Therefore, I hope the Public Accounts Committee look into the Government’s handling of this scheme before it is too late.”

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