All this silly government paperwork is a waste of council time and money

The average bid for Whitehall funding costs councils £33,000 and over a month of work
The average bid for Whitehall funding costs councils £33,000 and over a month of work

We have brought in some £57 million to the city for projects.

Since May 2011, we have brought in some £57 million to the city for projects to improve everything from reducing pollution from buses to renovating The Level, from refurbishing the Pavilion to bringing empty buildings back into use.

These are all very worthy projects and the hard work of council officers in bringing this investment to the city has been brilliant.

This, however, is all one-off funding that can be invested only in one-off projects, such as building something new or fixing something old. It will not help with the vast majority of local services provided by the council - such as bin collections, care for older people, and schools - all of which need regular ongoing funding.

And it pales in comparison to the £100 million financial black hole left to this council over the past few years - as a result of national government cuts and growing demand for services.

Recent research by the Local Government Association showed that there are some 124 different funding streams from different government departments for economic growth and regeneration.

Much of this money is funding that used to go to councils for services, which the government has cut and is now offering some back through a fragmented bidding processes. As a colleague once said, it is like the school bully taking your packet of crisps and offering you one crisp back.

Worse still, the cost of this charade is shocking. The average bid for Whitehall funding costs councils £33,000 and takes over a month of work - and there is no guarantee of success at the end. It is no wonder that so many people get frustrated with government bureaucracy.

We really do not need this silly Whitehall system where councils have to divert time and money to generating reams of paperwork to access much-needed funding for local projects. We would much prefer to put our limited resources directly towards creating jobs and building our city’s infrastructure.

The government must end this pointless uncertainty so that economic development gets the attention and investment it deserves.