Image by phill.d via Flickr
Leeds’ addiction to Private Finance Initiative‘s are a major topic we’ll be covering on knowyourleeds but for the meantime here’s a flavour of what to expect.
If you subscribe to Leeds Council‘s news RSS feed, by you’ll have noticed the several updates on the new Private Finance Initiative (PFI) projects appearing in your reader this week. To save you the trouble of Council PR paff, the good news is that the multi-million pound housing schemes for Holbeck, Beeston and Little London have been given the go-ahead by the Government.
Here’s a summary of the latest developments.
- The consortium, Sustainable Communities for Leeds (sc4L) bid to on this major housing regeneration project has been approved.
- The Council says it will now work with sc4L to finalise proposal details.
- Up to 388 new council homes will be built, with 1200 existing council properties being refurbished.
- A three-year construction phase is due to start around spring next year.
- The contract also includes ‘some environmental improvements’ provisions. Firms under the umbrella Keepmoat Limited have been contracted to provide this.
- They will also be responsible for maintenance services throughout the 20 year contract period.
While this is undoubtedly good news for the areas involved, the Leeds Citizen blog has the news which wasn’t updated on the news feed. Delays and inflation have led to a £12m increase in costs before the 20-year contract has even been signed. It’s yet to be confirmed whether this is for the duration of the contract or for the building phase.
“The council will need to meet additional costs in the contract that amount to about £1million a month,” Cllr Peter Gruen said a statement given to the Leeds citizen.
In other PFI news, which Cllr Gruen (executive member for housing) may want to note, the BBC reports that lighting costs have soared under a 25-year Private Finance Initiative contract from 2006.
- Image by George M. Groutas via Flickr
- A consortium provided £100m to replace most of Leeds’s street lamps.
- When the contract was signed, Leeds’ lighting system cost £5.8m per year to run, it now
- The majority of the rise in costs is, according to the BBC, repayment of the overall cost of 80,000 lights which have been since replaced.
Because PFI deals can be bracketed under ‘commercial confidentially’ agreements, little is now about the financial impacts or specific arrangements of the deals.
As always, if anyone has any information to share, then please leave a comment or email: firstname.lastname@example.org