Council publishes monthly spending
Published: Monday 9th August 10
Wandsworth Council has published details of all spending above £ 500 in a move designed to bring greater transparency to local government expenditure.
The list, which is available on the council website at www.wandsworth.gov.uk/spending, includes the value of every purchase and the name of the supplier. It will be updated on a monthly basis.
Wandsworth is among the first councils in the country to begin publishing its spending record.
Deputy leader and executive member for corporate resources Maurice Heaster said:
" We want taxpayers to see exactly how their money is being spent and to hold our decisions to account.
" The added scrutiny will help identify waste and point the way towards new efficiencies. Knowing that their decisions will be put under the spotlight will make our officers think even harder about the value of every purchase.
" At Wandsworth we pride ourselves on managing our finances very carefully. It' s through scrutinising every aspect of our spending that we control costs and keep our council tax at the lowest level in the country.
" We have also proved that financial prudence does not compromise services. Our resident satisfaction rating is the highest in the country and we hold the maximum four-star award for the quality of our services from the Audit Commission.
" Now more than ever, it is vital that public bodies keep a tight rein on their spending. Opening up our books is an important step towards meeting this challenge."
Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Eric Pickles is encouraging all councils to publish a spending register as part of a national drive to improve openness and accountability at town halls.
Mr Pickles said: " Getting council business out in the open will revolutionise local government. Local people should be able to hold politicians and public bodies to account over how their hard earned cash is being spent and decisions made on their behalf. They can only do that effectively if they have the information they need at their fingertips."
Over the past two decades Wandsworth Council has identified cumulative savings to taxpayers worth £ 200m each and every year. Thanks to these efficiencies the authority has delivered the country' s lowest council tax bills over the same period.
Wandsworth' s current Band D bill of £682 is half the UK average.
View the council's spending list at www.wandsworth.gov.uk/spending
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