The Treasury struggled hard to reassert short-term control of public spending following the economic crises of the mid-1970s. Spending departments have forfeited the right to extra resources in-year if prices have moved against them and, because the doctrine of annuality (that resources are provided for use in a particular year) has been enforced more tightly through cash limits and cash planning, they have lost managerial flexibility in planning those programs which do not fit neatly into the one-year cycle. This chapter focuses on the tensions which have arisen as a result, and which have eventually obliged the Treasury to accede to departmental demands for some modification to the principle of firm annual cash limits. In July 1983, the Treasury agreed to the introduction of an end-year flexibility scheme (EYF) which allowed central government departments to carry forward a limited amount of underspending on capital programs from one financial year to the next, on both voted and non-voted cash limits.
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