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Latest website and industry news at a glance..
Budget 2013: 'UK government should build more homes'
Date: 03/11/2013

Boosting homebuilding and infrastructure spending should be the main goal of the forthcoming Budget, according to business lobby groups.

The CBI and the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) want tens of thousands of new homes to be built to create new jobs and provide affordable homes.

But they say that the government should stick to its plans to cut borrowing.

However, the BCC says that the government should borrow more if there is no growth within six months.

The BCC is advocating a range of measures, including the building of 100,000 new homes, which it says will cost almost £30bn over three years.

John Longworth, director general of the BCC, said: "If within the next six months there is no prospect of growth... you might have to consider actually borrowing more money but you should only do it to fund areas that the market would forgive."

Building confidence

The CBI says £2.2bn should be moved from current spending to "high-growth areas". Some of this money should be used to build 50,000 new affordable homes, which it says would create 75,000 jobs.

The group also wants more investment in roads and infrastructure and a cap on business rates.

The CBI said money could be found from savings within government departments as well as sales of land and property, and insisted there would be no need for further borrowing.

Tax incentives should be provided to encourage the refurbishment of existing properties, the CBI added.

CBI director general John Cridland told the BBC the plan would address a range of problems: "We need Housing Associations to be freed up going forward to build the affordable housing needed.

"If we want nurses and firemen to be able to live in London we need to build these homes. You create construction jobs - and jobs for young people because these are entry-level jobs - and you build confidence."

He said the government should stick to its fiscal plan, but that these measures were also needed to boost the housing market and would benefit first-time buyers, those trapped in negative equity and those looking to refurbish their homes.

Last month, the CBI said that the UK would avoid falling into a so-called triple-dip recession.

The group believes that the UK economy will grow by 0.3% in the first quarter of the year, after the economy shrank in the last quarter of 2012 - the first period in what some feared might be another six months of negative growth.

Spending debate

The suggestions come as the coalition partners continue to debate whether the government's austerity plans are the right course for the current flat economic conditions.

Both Prime Minister David Cameron and his Chancellor, George Osborne, are determined to keep to their plans to rein in spending.

On Monday, the former defence secretary, Liam Fox, a Conservative, called on the government to freeze the level of public spending for five years and spend the money saved on cutting taxes and the deficit.

He wants all public spending frozen - as against the current freeze for Whitehall departmental budgets.

He is also urging an end to the ring-fencing of certain budgets, including the NHS, schools and universal benefits such as the pensioners' winter fuel allowance.

The Liberal Democrat Business Secretary, Vince Cable, is also against ring fencing, although for different reasons.

He told the BBC that protecting some departments intensified the burden on others: "When you have 80% of all government spending that's ring-fenced it means all future pressures then come on things like the army, the police, local government, and skills and universities.

"So... you get a very unbalanced approach to public spending... I think as a long-term approach to government spending, it isn't very sensible."

George Osborne will announce the Budget on 20 March.

.. read more

Portsmouth administrators rack up £2.2m in fees
Date: 02/28/2013

PKF ADMINISTRATORS have racked up £2.2m in fees for their work on the collapsed football club Portsmouth FC, according to the latest creditor report.

The administrators have incurred the £2.2m of fees in time costs for the period 17 February 2012 to 2 January 2013. This is for 7,295 hours of work which is an average of about £297 an hour.

However, the administrators have managed to draw £775,000 so far following approval from a creditor committee. At the end of the administration the administrators will decide on the percentage of their fees to be repaid with that figure needing creditor committee approval before it can be drawn. 

The club entered administration for the second time in two years on 17 February, with PKF partners Trevor Birch, Ian Gould and Bryan Jackson appointed.

Fees for the six months ending 2 January 2013 amounted to £851,671 for 2,905 hours of work at an average hourly rate of £293 per hour.

The administrators are currently awaiting a court hearing which will determine whether a rescue deal will be viable through a sale to the Portsmouth Supporters Trust (PST).

The administrators said in the latest creditor report that "if a sale can't be achieved a liquidation is the most viable option."

PST has funded some of the trading costs amounting to £244,061. However, preferential claims so far come in at about £52,000 and unsecured creditor claims are about £35m, which £11.4m as football creditors.

In a football insolvency, football creditors such as players, managers and other clubs, are paid first and in full.

Other costs highlighted include solicitor fees for Pinsent Masons which for the year come in at about £1.24m and £79,000 for George Davies, who acted for the Professional Footballers' Association, on negotiation of player wage deferrals and agent fees.



Read more: http://www.accountancyage.com/aa/news/2251286/portsmouth-administrators-rack-up-gbp22m-in-fees#ixzz2MDIYWmB7 

.. read more

What makes a good temp?
Date: 03/17/2012

With the economic situation still having a massive bearing on the jobs front, temporary work could be a lifeline, but is it for everyone?

If you are considering temporary work, what can you do to make sure you’re the one Recruitment Consultants think of first when a new assignment comes in? Is temping really for you?

Sell yourself in a professional way to your recruitment agency.
When an agency are looking for a dependable temp, tell them why you are good. Are you flexible? Versatile? Quick at picking things up? Do you have the skills that are required? Easy to get along with? Are you available at short notice?

Sell yourself to the recruitment consultant as you would in a job interview: make a list of your previous jobs and highlight key accomplishments and skills you’ve gained.

Understand how recruitment agencies work.

Picture the scene; A company have a problem, it may be that they have an increased workload, a project that needs to be completed ASAP or a key employee has gone off sick. The want someone with relevant skills to help them. This is where you come in.

Think of yourself as a mercenary!
You have skills that are transferable; you have the experience that would benefit the Company. You have good communication skills. You have the skills that are needed, you are good at creating and developing relationships, you are available at short notice. You can help them!

Be flexible in every way you can!
Flexibility is the key to being a successful temp. It’s not just about being flexible in terms of when you start on a new assignment, either. If you want the work to keep coming your way, you need to be flexible in terms of the rate you’re paid for short term assignments; and the role you have.

How keen are you to get work?
What can you do if, on a Friday afternoon, you find yourself without an assignment or any work for the following Monday? Perhaps you are considering temping whilst looking for your ideal permanent role?
It seems clear that if you go the extra mile to get the work, by keeping in close contact with your consultant and contacting the agency on a regular basis, you’re more likely to be successful in ensuring the money keeps coming in. Remember, be persistence.

Will temping look bad on your CV?
We are often asked about this point. Some people do not want to temp as they believe it will detract from their stable work history. Our advice is to keep on working (if that is what you want/need) Gain more skills, gain more experience on different computer packages and more business sectors. If you have been temping for some time, group your experiences together and list your key skills and experience. Good employers will understand.

What happens next?
Many of the temporary people we work with at Ba Recruitment, we have known for some time. We have developed relationships with people we have found dependable and versatile. However, we are always looking for good people. It’s up to you to develop a relationship with your agency and whilst you are temping a good agency will always keep you in mind when a suitable permanent jobs comes in.

Happy job hunting!

.. read more

News From The BBC

BBC News - UK

The latest stories from the UK section of the BBC News web site.


PM: I won't meet 1.7bn EU demand
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:41:10 GMT

David Cameron insists the UK will not pay 1.7bn demanded by the EU by 1 December - but Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso says it should not have come as a surprise.

Female bishop 'expected next year'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:47:29 GMT

The first female Church of England bishop is likely to be appointed in 2015, a senior Church official says.

Hen party death lorry driver cleared
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:49:31 GMT

A lorry driver is cleared of causing the death by dangerous driving of a woman on a hen party in West Yorkshire.

Asda faces mass action on equal pay
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:13:49 GMT

Asda, the UK's second largest retailer, is facing a mass legal action over equal pay by women who work in their stores.

Briton in Thai cosmetic surgery death
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:19:16 GMT

A British woman understood to have gone to Thailand for cosmetic surgery has died in an operation, Thai officials say.

Ashya's family 'unsafe for UK return'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:31:54 GMT

The family of Ashya King say they will not yet return to the UK following his treatment in Prague as they do not feel safe to do so.

Payout to mother of secret PC's child
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 11:03:03 GMT

The Metropolitan Police is to pay 425,000 to a woman whose child was fathered by a man she did not know was an undercover police officer.

GDP rises by 0.7% in third quarter
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 11:22:26 GMT

The economy expanded at a slower pace in in the three months to 30 September following a 0.9% rise in the second quarter, the ONS said.

Firefighters plan four-day strike
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:18:27 GMT

Firefighters in England are to strike for four days from 31 October in a row over pensions, the Fire Brigades Union says.

Scotland to reduce drink-drive limit
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:47:03 GMT

The Scottish government announces plans to reduce the country's drink-drive limit in time for Christmas, making the limit lower than in England.

PC jailed for partner's stab death
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:42:32 GMT

A "paranoid and controlling" former policeman is jailed for at least 28 years for killing his partner, who was stabbed 81 times.

Teenager stabbed on London bus
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:34:12 GMT

A 15-year-old boy who was stabbed on a bus in Sutton is in hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Rubber bullets used on Everton fans
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:56:45 GMT

Rubber bullets and a stun grenade were used against Everton supporters in a disturbance before the club's match in Lille, French police say.

Suicide mother gave girls acid drink
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:48:12 GMT

A mother poisoned herself and her two young daughters by drinking acid after struggling to get on with her in-laws, an inquest hears.

'Modern day slavery' farmer jailed
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 12:05:36 GMT

A horse farmer who forced a "terrified" vulnerable man to work unpaid for 13 years in "modern day slavery" is jailed for four-and-a-half years.

Jail for dementia abuse carers
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:28:42 GMT

Three care workers are jailed for abusing dementia patients at a Cumbria home.

Children held over rape of woman, 43
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 12:53:28 GMT

A 12-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl are among 11 people arrested on suspicion of raping a woman at a flat in Liverpool.

The Queen sends her first tweet
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 10:51:47 GMT

The Queen sends her first tweet to launch the London Science Museum's ambitious new Information Age gallery.

Ice maiden sculpture tops Snowdon
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:50:21 GMT

An ice sculpture is placed on the top of Snowdon to celebrate working women.

Farmer jailed over 1m will fraud
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:26:34 GMT

A County Armagh farmer who tried to use a forged will to inherit most of a 1m estate from an elderly woman has been sentenced to three years in prison.

Son is held over couple's deaths
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 11:28:23 GMT

The 42-year-old son of an elderly couple killed in County Donegal is being questioned about their deaths.

'Slavery' police search for more men
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:32:34 GMT

Police who investigated the "modern day slavery" case of a vulnerable man found working unpaid on a farm, say they are looking for other missing men.

Slip road closure 'benefits' traffic
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 15:23:57 GMT

A controversial peak time closure of a slip road to ease congestion on the M4 near Port Talbot is 'a benefit', a review into the trial finds.

Bird of prey deaths 'not deliberate'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:40:42 GMT

Police say birds of prey found dead in Ross-shire were probably accidentally poisoned as they make a fresh appeal for information.

Trio offer Rangers cash injections
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:21:28 GMT

Mike Ashley and Brian Kennedy join Dave King in offering Rangers a cash injection as director Philip Nash resigns.

Shaken baby father jailed for attack
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:09:13 GMT

A father who shook his baby son so hard that the youngster was left with severe brain injuries is jailed.

'Visa error' mum must leave child
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:11:40 GMT

A mother and daughter living in Bristol may be forced to live apart for two years while the woman applies for a new visa.

Murray fights back to reach semis
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:08:04 GMT

Andy Murray boosts his hopes of qualifying for the ATP Finals with a hard-fought win over Kevin Anderson at the Valencia Open.

VIDEO: Five of Luis Suarez's best goals
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 07:10:42 GMT

With Luis Suarez in line to make his Barcelona debut in El Clasico against Real Madrid on Saturday, BBC Sport looks back at five of his best Premier League goals for Liverpool.

Suarez gets help for impulse to bite
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:31:38 GMT

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez says he is getting professional help as he seeks to overcome an "impulse" to bite opponents.

Should love be symbolised by a lock?
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:46:29 GMT

The "love locks" on a Parisian bridge are meant to symbolise lovers' undying devotion to each other, but is a padlock an appropriate symbol for love?

The day UFOs stopped play
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 00:31:00 GMT

In 1954, a football game in Florence was interrupted by UFOs flying over the stadium. The spectacle was witnessed by more than 10,000 people ? but what was it?

Do people know where their chicken comes from?
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 01:03:57 GMT

Campaigners say chicken meat needs better labelling. How much do people know about the life of a chicken before it reaches their plate?

Plaid 'could hold balance of power'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:03:55 GMT

Plaid Cymru MPs could help decide who takes power after next year's general election, party leader Leanne Wood tells its conference.

EU leaders agree CO2 emissions cut
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 08:59:54 GMT

The EU agrees what it calls "the world's most ambitious" deal to cut greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030, overcoming deep divisions.

Salmond considers Westminster return
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 22:06:01 GMT

Alex Salmond says he has not made up his mind whether or not to stand for a Westminster seat at the next general election.

VIDEO: House of Commons
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 16:34:32 GMT

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt responds to an urgent question on the five-year plan for the NHS.

VIDEO: Speed racing on city ring-road
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 16:42:09 GMT

Coventry is to become the first city in the UK to stage competitive motor-sport on public roads.

VIDEO: 'Do you think I lack imagination?'
Thu, 23 Oct 2014 23:41:09 GMT

Russell Brand speaks to Newsnight about his "alternative to corporate hegemony".

VIDEO: Ashya King 'has really come along'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:07:17 GMT

Ashya King's father said his son "has really come along" while under going proton beam therapy in Prague.

VIDEO: The Queen sends her first tweet
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:05:08 GMT

The Queen's has sent her first tweet - sent through the @BritishMonarchy account - heralding the launch of a major new exhibition at London's Science Museum.

VIDEO: Crossbow bolt shot dog recovering
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 11:04:17 GMT

A Staffordshire bull terrier shot through the skull with a crossbow bolt is making a "miraculous" recovery following surgery.

VIDEO: Call to scrap term-time holiday ban
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:17:38 GMT

The ban on term-time holidays from school should be scrapped so head teachers can take a "common-sense approach", council leaders have suggested.

VIDEO: Scotland to reduce drink-drive limit
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 13:04:53 GMT

The Scottish government has announced plans to reduce the country's drink-drive limit in time for Christmas.

VIDEO: Cliff Richard police raid 'inept'
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:17:39 GMT

A police raid at the home of veteran pop star Sir Cliff Richard has been described as inept by a group of MPs.

In pictures: Grayson Perry exhibition
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 07:24:10 GMT

Grayson Perry captures the state of the nation

The undercover cop, his lover, and their son
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 00:36:08 GMT

The undercover cop, his lover, and their son

Text trail revealed extent of abuse
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 14:39:30 GMT

Texts and photos revealed 'despicable' care home abuse

Thousands enjoy Diwali celebrations
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:17:54 GMT

City lights up as thousands gather for Diwali celebrations

Quiz of the week's news
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 00:37:27 GMT

Why is Florida angry with Breaking Bad?

Digital detox call for the Sabbath
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 10:20:04 GMT

Could you switch off all your digital devices for 25 hours?

EU 'surcharge' and Stardust tributes - paper review
Fri, 24 Oct 2014 05:00:52 GMT

EU's 1.7bn demand of the UK leads many of Friday's papers