Pathfinder project could make millions in savings and income

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A PATHFINDER project in Cambridgeshire which could both save and generate millions of pounds for tax payers has been praised by Government.

The project has mapped out buildings being used by public services across Cambridgeshire to look for ways to share assets, make savings and deliver joined up services.

Cambridgeshire was successfully chosen by Government to be one of 11 Capital and Asset Pathfinders projects. On Friday (August 5) Communities Minister Baroness Hanham has praised the work of Cambridgeshire and other pathfinder projects.

For the first time assets, such as buildings, which are used or in the control of Cambridgeshire public services has been mapped out on one easy to use electronic tool.

This is a very powerful way of identifying potential to share and remove unsuitable properties and for communicating the picture on public sector assets to other parties.

Pathfinder has also helped to make contact with Government departments and agencies to create even more dramatic solutions to share facilities.

As well as bringing millions of pounds in benefits to taxpayers, it is expected that services will be more joined up under this work to the benefit of service users.

The partnership has also worked to develop a joined up strategy for managing the public sector estate in Cambridgeshire to meet and plan for broader issues such as regeneration, new development and reducing their impact on the environment.

Cambridgeshire County Councillor Steve Count, Cabinet Member for Resources and Performance, said: “Cambridgeshire is at the forefront nationally of looking at ways of sharing facilities and services with other public organisations. This pilot project, which is part of our Making Assets Count scheme is the first step in driving forward real benefits for the communities we serve. It means services can share facilities putting them in one place on the doorstep of our communities to make it easier for them to access. It could also see millions of pounds in both savings and income as assets which are not needed are sold or shared. Public organisations as a whole will be able to plan better where services should be based to meet changing demands and work together to get the greatest benefit.”