College gets go-ahead.. but read the small print..

While commentators seem to agree that any rise in the budget allocated to the Northern Ireland Executive was small, they seem to disagree on the actual figure. ANYhoo.. In short, not much difference from what was already announced.. Twice. Interesting querying of the changes to taxation from the BBC’s Peter Robert Peston. But Northern Ireland Secretary Shaun Woodward isn’t complaining [And why would he? – Ed] he’s been able to give the go-ahead for the long-delayed integrated training college for the police, prisons staff and the fire and rescue services. Although it’ll still take a while to be operational.. Meanwhile, as noted here, Finance mininster Peter Robinson is returning to his now favourite theme – “The DUP Finance Minister Peter Robinson said it highlighted “the need for local departments to deliver efficiencies over the period to 2010-11″.” Indeed. Adds Mark Devenport has an update – “UPDATE: Alex Salmond met Ian Paisley at Westminster this afternoon. He claims NI and Wales are just as upset as he is about the Comprehensive Spending Review and they intend to work together to try to get a better deal…” And More form Mark – “FURTHER UPDATE: This evening the Finance Department confirmed that Peter Robinson had discussed the spending review with his Scottish counterpart and they hope to meet the Treasury soon, either separately or together. Both ministers are concerned, apparently, about the way the funds are geared over the next three years.”

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