Budgets and efficiency
Why councils need to watch their language
Writing better letters can help build stronger relationships with residents and boost income. Hannah Moffatt sets out three tips for councils can use to make their communications more effective.
Door knocking on neighbourhoods
The cuts meted out to neighbourhood services are shortsighted, damaging to communities, and grossly unfair on local government, write Paul O’Brien and Dr Peter Kenway.
Doomed to success?
The snap election has shunted full business rates retention into the sidings. But does the sector now face delay or abandonment of what had been slated as the biggest revolution in local government finance for generations? Jonathan Werran reports.
Councils should be shouting from the rooftops about UC
Jo Miller says the roll-out of Universal Credit is a scandalous waste of public money - and the sector must be more vocal about it.
The sector must be heard
Mark Rogers says campaigning in the run-up to June’s General Election and the ongoing Brexit process must not overshadow the countless agendas that genuinely affect people’s lives.
Finance officers must be prepared for General Election shocks
Councils need to ensure their budgets are resilient, whatever the outcome of the General Election, warns Rob Whiteman.
‘Give NI councils powers to do their jobs’
Northern Irish councils should be given the ‘power and the resources to do the job’ while Stormont’s political parties continue to row, a key figure in the province has argued.
Pickles to stand down as MP
Former communities secretary Sir Eric Pickles has announced he is standing down as MP for Brentwood and Ongar after 25 years.
The benefits of place-based care and support
A fast-changing provider landscape is emerging in health and social care. Ewan King outlines what a place-based system should include and some of the challenges ahead.
Scottish councils should 'target local economies'
Campaigners have called on Scottish councils to spend more with small and medium-sized enterprises (SME).
Championing the community
Cambridgeshire CC won the Excellence in Community Engagement prize at The MJ’s Local Government Excellence Awards 2016. Here’s how they did it.
Going for gold in children's services
New ADCS president Alison Michalska’s priorities for the year revolve around the determination to create a country that truly works for children.
Time to get an honest act together
Some councils with unsustainable budgets are generously funded while others with sound financial management are poorly funded. For too many in local government it is the truth that dare not speak its name, writes John Sinnott.
Messages from the private sector
Malcolm Morley interviews leading business figures and produces some key lessons for commercial councils.
Something to build on
Key figures talk to Heather Jameson about the impact the Industrial Strategy will have on national growth, with local government poised to take centre stage.
Map the Industrial Strategy around functional economic areas
The new Industrial Strategy should be rooted in the principles of people and place and mapped around functional economic areas, housing marketing areas and travel to work areas, argues Sandra Dinneen.
CIPFA warning over voluntary mergers
Councils will be unable to cover the costs of voluntary mergers in Wales using their reserves, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA) has warned.
Tight budgets mean sharing kids’ services
Sharing children’s services will be the ‘future’ as budgets continue to tighten, according to a top Department for Education official.
EXCLUSIVE: Fresh bed-blocking fine threat looming
Councils are facing a fresh risk of NHS fines for ‘bed-blocking’ as health bodies struggle to hit new Treasury targets to reduce deficits.
Call for 'more sustainable' childcare approach
Ministers’ proposed childcare reforms risk repeating the mistakes of the social care market, with providers potentially unable to afford to deliver services, a think-tank has warned.