Westminster fails to get grant cut reversed

WESTMINSTER City Council's bid to win a judicial review against the Government's decision to cut its grant by £10m next year has failed.

The council, represented by Roger Henderson QC of 2 Harcart Buildings, went to the High Court in late January to argue that it had been unfairly treated by the Labour administration.

It challenged changes to the way its Standard Spending Assessment was calculated for 1998-99. The Government reduced the funding it received for tourists and visitors.

But the application was rejected by Mr Justice Turner.

The council's chief executive and director of finance Bill Roots complained that the council was not given enough time to plan for the funding cut. "Such unexpected and rapid changes do not aid sound financial planning," he said.