Can we all work smarter?
Gary Fielding says that even if the government loosens austerity, we probably need to do more work on our savings plans - but can we all work smarter?
Surrey to pause out-of-county purchases
Surrey CC has paused making property purchases outside the county amid ongoing furore that councils are taking on too much risk by developing extensive portfolios.
Spending Review should put aside £3bn for children's services - MPs
The Government needs to release at least £3bn of non-ring-fenced funding to local authorities to save children’s services from the ‘crisis’ they are in, MPs have said.
Austerity holding back local government fight against knife crime
‘Inadequate’ Government leadership and funding is hindering local government in tackling knife crime, a former Whitehall tsar has said.
Taking forward New Municipalism in London
The Centre for Local Economic Strategies (CLES) has launched a new publication introducing the concept of New Municipalism and how it is being progressed in the London boroughs of Islington, Hackney and Camden.Neil McInroy explains its key elements.
Whiteman: A new code is needed
Chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy, Rob Whiteman, says a new financial management code is vital after a decade of austerity.
End 'lazy language of austerity,' sector urged
Government’s choice to target councils for cuts rather than austerity is to blame for local government’s financial woes, leading finance experts have argued.
The trouble with social policy ‘evidence’
In making the case for more cash to improve public health based on its ‘evidence of what works’, the Local Government Association 'has been simplistic and selective in its statistics', according to Richard Stokoe.
How not to handle an announcement
The launch of a Stronger Towns Fund to give a boost to the Government hasn't exactly gone to plan, argues Claire Kober - instead it has been a masterclass in how not to handle a political announcement.
EXCLUSIVE: Avoiding the precipice
As councils seek ways to meet the funding gap, Martin Reeves and Rob Whiteman look at the implications for the future of public services and how we need a mature debate on prevention, accountability and joined up services. Heather Jameson reports
What do we want from our public services?
Heather Jameson says the cracks in our communities are starting to show, with knife crime, homelessness and poverty on the rise. But are we really ready for a mature, budget-sharing relationship across public services?
Hungry kids and foodbanks could become 'normal'
Children arriving at school hungry and families queuing up at foodbanks ‘could become part of the wallpaper’ of everyday life, the president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) has warned.
It’s time to act on child poverty
We are one of the richest countries in the world, yet poverty levels are rising. Councils must act now, says Stuart Gallimore - or we will look back in shame.
Two-thirds of councils say they have brought in or increased charges for social care
Two-thirds of councils in England who responded to a freedom of information (FOI) request said they have introduced or increased charges for care and support services in the past three years.
MHCLG yet to agree no-deal Brexit escalation process for care provider failure
Marsham Street has still not agreed its ‘escalation process’ in the case of a no-deal Brexit causing social care provider failure, a leaked document has revealed.
Opportunity knocks for Lambeth
Lambeth LBC’s chief executive Andrew Travers says that while the council faces pressures and challenges, including the Brexit transition, the council is making the area ‘prosperous and successful’ for the benefit of residents.
Why I am a Brexiteer
Brexit minister Kwasi Kwarteng was recently guest speaker at a Localis dinner, where he was quizzed by a local government audience. Here, he responds to further questions from Michael Burton.
It’s the extraordinary who carry on in hard times
Senior local government staff and members are often extraordinary, but everyone has their limits, says Heather Jameson
How to get back on track
What the chancellor must do in the Spending Review is tell a coherent story; one that allows for the radical and bold change that puts Government on to a sustainable financial pathway, says Rob Whiteman.
Central Government is missing the bigger picture
As manufacturers withdraw from the UK, local government’s task of building the economy and boosting local productivity is becoming a steeper and steeper uphill climb, says Heather Jameson.