What do we mean by efficiency? It seems like a straightforward question, but as we found at a recent Localis and Capita Symonds roundtable discussion, the answer is not as obvious as one might think.
MP Graham Allen believes his proposed early intervention foundation could be created early next year following crucial backing from prime minister David Cameron
Skills, criminal justice and health, as well as work and pensions, are all areas in which councils should be free to show how they can do things differently and more effectively, says Alex Thomson.
Is the coalition Government serious about empowering local government?
As the Localism Bill moves into Report stage in the Lords, local authorities are getting ever closer to gaining their much discussed General Power of Competence (GPoC).
George Osborne has robustly defended the coalitions planning reforms and warned critics that no one should underestimate ministers determination to drive through the proposals.
Writing in the Financial Times, the chancellor dismisses claims by opponents that the reforms will put the countryside in peril and says that sticking with the old, failed planning system puts at risk young peoples future prosperity.
A single chief executive could manage as many as five district councils at one time, the leader of Conservatives in local government has claimed.
LGA Conservative group head Gary Porter, who is also leader of South Holland DC and already shares his councils chief executive with neighbouring Breckland DC, told LGC five councils under one chief executive was definitely feasible.
More for less is something of a mantra for the government. No-one would suggest creating better public services while reducing the cost of providing those services is an easy task, but there is plenty of evidence that sharing services between local authorities is one way to achieve this desirable double whammy.
The housing minister, Grant Shapps, has admitted that house prices in Britain have become “too unaffordable”, following a report warning that the housing market is in crisis as home ownership falls and property prices soar.
But the minister insisted that government plans would get “Britain building again” as he outlined a number of measures, including planning reforms and a release of thousands of acres of public land, designed to increase the number of homes built.
Chief Executive Alex Thomson reponds to the Government’s announcement today that four local authorities will pilot a Social Impact Bonds scheme.
Four councils are to pilot innovative arrangements to fund intensive help for families with complex needs, minister for civil society Nick Hurd has announced.
Up to £40m could be raised by four social impact bond pilots, launched in Hammersmith & Fulham LBC, Westminster and Birmingham city councils and Leicestershire CC, the minister said .