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Council makes awards final for finance initiatives


The council has secured its place at the prestigious event in the Innovations in Finance category, at next month’s annual awards ceremony at the London Hilton.
Judges were impressed by the council’s ambitious programme of activity and innovative finance strategies, which include:
  • Negotiating with the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Homes & Communities Agency, to become the sole planning authority in Milton Keynes, and thus lead planning for future growth.
The council also purchased 700 hectares of development land previously owned by the HCA and has taken on the management of a £300m forward funding programme for infrastructure related to the growth areas, known as the MK Tariff.
The Tariff is a financial contribution made by developers to improve local infrastructure.
  • Developing a proposed new Residual Waste Treatment Facility which will create energy from waste and as such save more than £50m over its lifetime and cut landfill use by 95%.
  • Buying its Central Milton Keynes property, Saxon Court, from which a number of services are delivered, to create a saving from the rental payment. Part of the site is now being developed as the base for the University Campus Milton Keynes.
Council leader Cllr Andrew Geary said: “Financially these are very challenging times for every council in the country and in Milton Keynes we have notbeen immune to that.
“But we are still in a very strong position economically – we havealready been judged as the best place to lead the country out of recession, but we arenot standing still.
 “Working closely with partners, we are bringing truly historic changes to Milton Keynes. People are really starting to sit up and take notice.”
Cllr Edith Bald, cabinet portfolio holder for finance, added: “In Milton Keynes we aim to balance the short term objective of delivering high quality services at the lowest possible cost with the need to invest for the future to meet changing needs for essential services and ensure assets such as roads and green spaces are properly maintained. 
“Reaching the finals of this prestigious awards ceremony shows that we are doing exactly this.”
The winners of the MJ Awards will be announced on June 20.