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Redundancy process starts at NWDA

Simon Binns on the quangos and institutions facing the heat in funding squeeze

Written by . Published on July 21st 2010.

Redundancy process starts at NWDA

The North West Regional Development Agency (NWDA) has asked staff to take voluntary redundancy as it prepares to be wound up.

I think there’s a good chance the NWDA won’t make it to the next financial year. It will have an impact on Manchester City Council and other local authorities as they will be expected to pick up the slack on projects they can’t fulfil.

Workers at the Warrington-based agency, which is due for closure in 2012, have until the end of September to put themselves forward for redundancy, although any package it can offer still has to be signed off by the Treasury.

The agency has also closed the doors on the award of any new grants or contracts after it had its budget cut by £52m by the government earlier this month.

The NWDA is not the only public agency in the north west to feel the full force of the coalition government’s spending bonfire.

Manchester Confidential also understands that Business Link, which provides advice to local firms, will be forced to make cuts and may also look into offering voluntary redundancy.

The University of Manchester is also engaged in a second round of voluntary redundancies, which finishes at the end of this month, as it looks to shave £17m from its annual budget.

Some sources close to the NWDA said the cuts may be the start of a winding down process that see it close before 2012, possibly as early as the start of next year.

“I think there’s a good chance they won’t make it to the next financial year,” said the source. “I think they’ll be looking to wrap things up as soon as possible. The NWDA freeze will also have an impact on Manchester City Council and other local authorities as they’ll be expected to pick up the slack on projects they can’t fulfil.”

The winding down of the agency may also impact on North West Vision and Media, which is almost entirely funded by the NWDA.

The NWDA, Business Link and North West Vision & Media declined to comment.

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26 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Leigh ScottJuly 19th 2010.

Good to have some business news,I'm looking forward to more; Congrats on the appointment Simon.

The happy sad punterJuly 19th 2010.

I agree with Scoteee and I am exceptionally pleased that Mancon is pushing this direction. Good quality business news on a local level is much needed.

Sad to hear about the NWDA though, they have definitely helped change the northwest landscape for the better, lets hope our new 'big society' can grow fast enough to scoop up the fall out.

Stuart BamberJuly 20th 2010.

The thing about voluntary redundancies (especially in the public sector) can often be; the good staff take their payment and walk into another job. The inept ones remain in the troubled organisation.

Manchester Uni has massively overspent over the last few years. You reap what you sow.

Don''t trust stats U haven''t fudged yourselfJuly 20th 2010.

Does anyone still believe the national unemployment figurtes? 2.47m my a*se! We live in Spain!

NortherngeezerJuly 20th 2010.

2.47 mill...............who gives a shit if yer in work yerself, probably no one.

DescartesJuly 20th 2010.

Lies damn lies and tickertape.

Our jobs system is absolute bullshit. Remember you're not unemployed unless you register at the job centre - you're just out of work and don't count towards the figures.

Similarly if you don't stick to the job centres rules and take whatever job they send you to, they take you off their books and you're not unemployed any more.

Don't believe the hype, we're far more f*cked than the gov't would have you believe.

Leigh ScottJuly 20th 2010.

I have to laugh when we are told that they will encourage the 2.47 million back to work by reducing jobseekers allowance and removing the need for those who abuse sickness benefits.

that sounds like a great idea, only I wasn't aware that there were 2.47 million jobs available?

Stuart BamberJuly 20th 2010.

It's a bit stupid; the people who've been out of work the longest will find it hardest to find work. Not ALL long-term unemployed are scrounging job-dodgers.

John WojowskiJuly 20th 2010.

Thank good that at last we are about close down some of these money wasting quangos from this region. NWDA has done nothing for most people in the region. It has it's pet projects, wastes money, and lots of fat cats doing nothing.

The best thing this coalition government has done since it's inception. Good riddence to them.

Lincon HashewJuly 20th 2010.

Regional development agencies waste money by funding prestige vanity projects supported by ignorant councillors on an ego trip. They have no concept of the environmental degredation brought about by some of these schemes. If they go under, then so be it. At least we will see less money being spent on such nonsense, and what money that is available should hopefully go where it is needed - on health, education and welfare.

NWDAJuly 20th 2010.


jayceeJuly 20th 2010.

This is sad, but sadder for the people who will not get funding in the future. Development agencies do promote economic regeneration and redundancy costs waste what what funding is available. Short termism reins with this present government.

HelJuly 20th 2010.

It did some good stuff, it did some crap stuff. But it was far too big and powerful and had too much money at its disposal. I have mixed feelings about it going - what will replace it and do all its old work?

MFJuly 20th 2010.

Jesus, call this news? Nothing of any substance. No details, not even a kosher quote. Recommend Simon spends five minutes with someone who knows what the hell is going on. Makes you look like a bunch of amateurs when you turn in copy which is this pisspoor - after all your 'we are going newsbased' hype.

Leigh ScottJuly 20th 2010.

MF- what detail do you have to contribute further on the subject? Please tell all!

AnonymousJuly 20th 2010.

Lets get this right on the unemployment figures. The headline figure is a average number over three months of those of working age who tell interviewers from the Labour Force Survey that they are seeking a job and can start in the next week. They are not only those who have lost their job but students seeking vacation work, people returning from ill health and people moving back to work from 'not being employed'.
There are appoximately 40 million people of working age of which 27 million plus are working (FT or PT). It follows that their are approx 30% who are not employed at anyone time.
Amoung these' two million have lost thier job, two million approx are full time students, two million are disabled and the rest are 'not employed' (women or men with young children)
The figures are from different series, and don't at up.
There is another group of employees who are not of working age (under 16 +60/65) who are also employed, increasing so among the 60/65+. There are some recent figures on these but I have not got them to hand.
Please also note that there are is an increasing proportion of part-time employees amoung the employed.

The claimant count is of course those people who are not employed who are eligible for job seekers allowence etc and are required to seek work. Not all eligible apply. Those on disability allowence are not required to seek work.
Note that claiments also are not permiiteed to do voluntary work in general. So they are not available for the Great Society!
These figures are only stock figures. Usually there are about 250,000 who sign on each month and more or less same number
who get jobs. There are 8 million P 45's a year (some people get more than one).
Tha's enough for the day... if you want a seminare it is £500 for a day course!

AnonymousJuly 20th 2010.

The job figures do not include the massive number of recently redundant who cannot claim job seekers allowance due to having savings, however small those savings may be.

AnonymousJuly 20th 2010.

NorthernGeezer: 2.47 mill...............who gives a shit if yer in work yerself, probably no one.

I would grow up and start to 'give a shit' if I were you NorthernGeezer, seen as you are paying their benefits, increased unemployment means more crime and a poor economy threatens everyone's jobs, not just just the public sector. Public sector workers buy products and services from the private sector. If they are out of work then they can't afford to buy stuff.

AnonymousJuly 20th 2010.

Dear Anon, I explained at length that the 2.47 million is nothing to do with those claiminmg job seekers allowence. (the claiment count) it is those looking for a job and are ready to start. The argument about who claim or don't ended last year. Only about 70% of men who loose there job claim but more than 90% women. You are right men don't claim because they get no benefit if they have savings, and they avoid the rules.

Its complicated .. that's why I am offering a seminar.

NortherngeezerJuly 20th 2010.

Anon, yer cant fight the system, better men then me have tried and failed. If there are numptys who can claim so much benefits that the incentive to work is gone then theres no hope for the rest of us who dont mind doing our bit. Utopia it aint (well not unless the council is picking up yer £1000 a week rent for yer pad in Didsbury for you an yer 8 kids cos yer cant really go back to wherever cos of the threats) so i pay me bit, look after me own, and f*ck everyone else, especially the 2.47 mill.

JohnJuly 21st 2010.

"Two million are disabled" - Anonymous - thanks for the good laugh Mr. Anonymous but I really think that should read "two million are claiming disability, a large part of which are lard arsed layabouts who are too idle to work"

m19redJuly 21st 2010.

shame as the NWDA did some good stuff without the same political shackles that GONW have to wear

CkrisgJuly 23rd 2010.

If you are made redundant it does not matter how much money you have, you get Jobseekers Allowance, it a universal benefits if you have been working it not based on money so Anonymous that and the rest of your conclusions are bu......

DibigoJuly 23rd 2010.

The answer to this is simple: all club together £500 and pay 'anonymous' for a seminar. He's a highly established and trust worthy authority on the matter... after all he's offering his services via the forum of a local lifestyle magazine website that deals mainly in telling people what food to eat.

D KesslerJuly 25th 2010.

CKRISG, get your facts right: if you are made redundant, you are now entitled to 13 WEEKS BENEFITS AT FULL LAST PAY LEVEL. Since the ConDems came in that is. That shut you up, didn't it?

AnonymousJuly 25th 2010.

Yes I was wrong about JSA. The rule for contrubtion based JSA is:

Jobcentre Plus can pay this for up to 182 days. It´s based on how much National Insurance you have paid in the last two tax years. Generally, self-employed contributions will not help you qualify for contribution-based Jobseeker´s Allowance.

I don't know what Whalley Ranger is referring to.

Redundancy Pay varies with age. Statutory redundancy pay is one week for each completed year of employment with a maximum of £380 per week for 22 to 40 year olds. Companies may have their own more generous schemes. (Non Taxable)

If you don't work your contractual notice you are entitled to pay in lieu.(taxable)

Employment and Support Allowance. the new word for Incapacity Benefit is complex, and I need to investigate further but it is paid when an employees's statutory sick pay runs out and if they pass the assessment.

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