Review of Social Value Act

The Cabinet Office has announced a review of the Social Value Act, which will look into the potential for it to be extended more widely.

The Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012, which “aims to transform the way taxpayers’ money is spent on public services”, requires public commissioners to think about whether they can secure added economic, social or environmental benefits for their local area when they are buying services. It currently only applies to service contracts over the EU threshold of £113,057 for central government and £173,934 for other public bodies.

The review intends to determine if this should be widened, for example to cover contracts for goods and works as well as services, and how this can be done in a way that continues to support small and medium enterprises and voluntary, community and social enterprises.

The review of the Act, which was first introduced in 2013, will be led by Lord Young, the Prime Minister’s adviser on enterprise, and supported by the Federation of Small Businesses, Chris White MP, Hazel Blears MP, and Michael  O’Toole, the outgoing Crown Representative of the voluntary sector, and soon to be chief executive of Mentor UK.

The review team will consider evidence from a range of source over the coming months, looking to report on their findings in early 2015.