Decision on PFI funding

The Secretary of State is due to announce today (Friday) which local authorities have been successful in bids for Scottish Office funding to back projects being built under the Government's private finance initiative (PFI).

Ten projects are likely to be approved, eight of which are understood to be in education. The Pounds 136 million flagship programme in Glasgow to renew the city's entire secondary school stock and upgrade information and communications technology for schools is almost certain to be given the go-ahead.

Other councils expecting good news are Edinburgh, which has a Pounds 70 million scheme for regenerating school buildings, and Stirling, which wants to build a Pounds 15 million replacement for Balfron High.

Cash ensures that a "level playing-field" will be established so that projects cost councils no more than would be the case under conventional public sector borrowing. In Glasgow, the city will get Pounds 16 million a year for 30 years in lieu of loan charge support Ministers have been billing the Pounds 300 million for education as the single largest expenditure on the fabric of schools this century.

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