Jeremy Lefroy (Stafford, Conservative)
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will publish a statement of his Department's expenditure in each of the last 36 months; and what steps he is taking to avoid an annual underspend.
Jonathan Djanogly (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (HM Courts Service and Legal Aid), Justice; Huntingdon, Conservative)
The Department's expenditure in each of the last 36 months is shown in the following table. The figures represent the Department's total resource departmental expenditure limit (DEL) which includes the depreciation of capital assets.
|Amount (£ million)|
|(1) The figures above relate to in-year financial management data reported to the Finance Management Committee and will therefore not match the audited figures published in the Department's annual resource accounts.|
The Department has taken significant steps over the past 18 months to strengthen its financial management capability through its finance improvement strategy. The strategy is being delivered through a Finance Improvement programme and supports the Department in meeting the challenges of the spending review period and beyond. As is consistent with good financial management, the Department regularly monitors its spend in-year to identify potential over and under-spending. This includes monthly reporting to the Financial Management Committee, which reviews in-year spend on a monthly basis, and keeps contingency options to mitigate the risks of over and under-spending under constant review. This process ensures measures are introduced in a timely manner and that the Department remains consistent in securing value for money. The Department has also introduced a bi-annual process to challenge the financial forecasting in Business Groups and to help inform the annual budget allocation process.