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Leading council chief questions BSF cancellation

The cancellation of the Building Schools for the Future programme has prompted concern from one of the country’s most influential public sector managers, Croydon council chief executive Jon Rouse.

“I have been supportive on the big decisions the coalition government has taken so far in terms of financial necessity but BSF is the first one that’s made me pause”, he told the Movers and Shakers gathering of property and construction managers.

Mr Rouse said Croydon council was committed to protecting its capital spending programme, despite the fears of widespread cuts in local government investment. “For me, it can act as a bridge that couldhelp alleviate any risk of public sector cuts pushing the economy into a double dip recession. Capital expenditure of infrastructure and site assembly is one of the most enabling things a council can do for the economy.”

He also called on councils and other public sector bodies to work with the property and construction industry to develop under-used public buildings.