Written - Invest-to-Save Fund
I am today announcing further details of the Assembly Government’s new Invest-to-Save Fund to which I referred during the Plenary discussion of my Budget Statement on 28th April 2009.
Through the Fund, I will be making available up to £60 million, initially over two years, 2009-10 and 2010-11. This sum will be invested in the implementation of projects that will deliver cash-releasing savings through transforming the operation of public bodies to deliver effective and citizen-centred front-line services.
The Fund is an important part of our strategy to support public services in responding to the challenge of delivering quality services and outcomes for citizens during a period of tightening budgets. It builds on and enhances our Making the Connections Improvement Fund which has been pump-priming collaborative efficiency projects since 2006.
The Fund will be available, on an investment basis, to public service bodies funded by the Assembly Government to contribute towards the revenue costs of change projects which will secure measurable improvements in efficiency. We will also look at opportunities of using the fund in parallel with our Strategic Capital Investment Fund in relevant cases.
Investments from the Fund will be fully repayable, there will be no interest charged and there will be flexibility on the payback period. This approach will ensure that the Fund is replenished after our initial investment, and we will be able to continue to invest in new projects beyond the fund’s first two years.
We will be working closely with public services and social partners to encourage the development of ambitious, innovative proposals which will re-engineer operations, streamline processes, strip out unnecessary bureaucracy and develop the collaborative approach to service delivery which has consistently underpinned our public service policy.