Government Gives Back Ownership of Assets

Posted on February 11, 2011 by Professor Benfield There have been 0 comments

Government Gifts to Local Communities

Communities Benefit


Although Central Government may have funded the purchase or development of things like business parks, shopping parades, and other buildings for local councils, the Coalition is going to give them all to local communities.

In future they will be able to decide what to do with them; whether to rent them, share them, or even sell them and, presumably, do something else with the money.

No More “Claw-Backs”


Until now central government has imposed restrictions on the way such property could be handled.  For example by generally ‘clawing-back’ any money that it provided for an assets acquisition if it were disposed of or its use changed.

Now they will be able to do what they want with these assets, including selling them or using them as security for other projects,  

Local People Know Best

At least that is the belief that central government is pressing into practice. Making this announcement, Greg Clark, the Minister responsible said “I'm determined to bust every centrally imposed barrier that holds communities back from acting in the best interests of local people”.

But Do Local People Know It?

While ending these restrictions may notionally give local people control over how to manage their local needs and local environment, how long will it take them to recognise this? And then how much longer to take ‘appropriate’ actions?

Town Hall Rules

The likelihood is that Town Hall staff will still be the people with their hands on the tiller.  And as Hardy used to say to Laurel “That’s another fine mess you’ve got me into”!

But maybe there is scope for some entrepreneurial (timber frame) builder activity in there somewhere.


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