The NI Audit Office has questioned the Department of Finance and Personnel’s use of its borrowing power for the Reform and Reinvestment Initiative (Full report here pdf file). So far £411m has been borrowed but the Audit office believes that capital under-spends should have made such borrowings unnecessary or significantly reduced. It highlights that if this free attitude to borrowing continues and the full £2bn is borrowed it will lead to a large bill for NI ratepayers:
Should DFP access the full £2 billion borrowing available, repayments are likely to peak at approximately £137 million a year. Based on a current Northern Ireland population of 1.7 million, this equates to potentially £80 a year per head of population.