FINANCE: West Hertfordshire Hospitals has predicted a new carbon tax introduced by the government will cost the trust £250,000 this year.

The trust’s budget setting report listed £2.57m of cost pressures expected in the 2011-12 financial year.

The largest expected pressure was £700,000 for “additional beds to support emergency pressures and support services”.

£500,000 of costs were expected for “Agenda for Change compliance for outsourced staff” in relation to Medirest.

It estimated the cost of the Royal Wedding bank holiday in April at £330,000.

The report said: “A number of these pressures reflect external requirements, for example the requirement to meet a minimum level of medical staff hours on the Labour Ward and the Carbon Tax, which is part of the Government’s sustainability agenda. From a planning perspective a sum of £2.5m has been included in the 2011/12 budgets.