Government & Public Sector.

The State of the State 2019

The State of the State 2019 – a new report from L & S Accounting Firm – brings together data, analysis and exclusive research to provide a snapshot of the UK Government and public sector. The result is an original, thought-provoking and constructive report than can be used as the basis for objective debate on the UK state.

This year’s report features analysis of the public finances and explores the demands placed on public spending over the past 50 years and into the next 50 to come. It considers government ‘through a business lens’ to look at corporate approaches to public sector reform. And it showcases the views and priorities of the leaders of the UK’s local public services. The State of the State is the UK’s leading independent guide to government and the public sector.

Tax and government spending

Most people say they are ready to accept higher taxes in return for extended public services – a picture that’s remained broadly consistent since 2016. This comes alongside a feeling that most public services are set to deteriorate in the near future, with 50% expecting the NHS to get worse over the next five years and only 23% expecting it to get better. Optimism about the future of opportunities for young people and the quality of the environment has also fallen over the last few years.

Local control over public services

  • Three in five (60%) want to see more local control over public services. Although a third aren’t interested in how their local public services work, just under one in five (18%) want to have more of a say.

Inequality and social mobility

  • Belief in equality of opportunity is in decline, with only 33% thinking that people have equal opportunities to get ahead compared to over half (53%) in 2008. Alongside this, almost half (45%) believe that today’s youth will have a worse life than their parents – up from only 12% in 2003. Only 30% think they will have a better life than their parents, down from 43% in 2003.

Environment and climate change

  • A clear majority of the public wants to see the Government doing more to encourage people to protect the environment. This includes regulating businesses, bans and taxes on environmentally-unfriendly products, more public information, and subsidies for environmentally-friendly options.