NAO - jobs support must align with wider government recovery strategy
The Department for Work and Pensions’ pandemic jobs support must align with the wider government economic recovery strategy, says the public spending watchdog.
Playing it long
A Localis policy webinar on long-term local government finances indicated strategic pragmatism will be order of the day for the sector until the mid-2020s, writes Jonathan Werran.
Change is in the air
In anticipation of its forthcoming report on councils and net zero, the National Audit Office asked a round table of local government experts hosted by The MJ what they were doing on climate change – and what they needed from central government.
The future is already here
Success can only come from choosing our battles - and our timing - well, and working for change collaboratively across the sector, says Abdool Kara.
COVID crisis exposed council underfunding, says watchdog
The COVID crisis exposed existing weaknesses in public services, including the underfunding of local government and the neglect of social care, the National Audit Office (NAO) has said.
Bucket list for fixing council finances
Co-designing a truly sustainable finance system for councils for the long-term ‘won’t be quick and it won’t be easy’, says Martin Reeves. A few more years of ‘make do and mend’ will not work for our communities and economies, he adds.
Let's see what happens on longer-term funding
Lorna Baxter gave evidence at the Public Accounts Committee in response to the NAO report on local government finance during COVID. She says there is acknowledgement that the longer-term funding and distribution mechanism needs to be addressed.
Short-term funding has held back care, says watchdog
Short-term funding has held back investment in the unstable £16.5bn adult social care market despite a forecast 57% in demand from the over-65s by 2036 says a report from the National Audit Office (NAO).
The White Paper recognises coterminosity makes a strategic difference
Abdool Kara asks if the lessons of Lansley will be learned, 'especially the making-redundant-then-rehiring of health professionals strategy that cost the public purse dearly in 2011?'
Marsham Street told to improve transparency
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has come under fire from finance watchdogs for a lack of transparency.
Watchdog warns of post-pandemic underfunding crisis
Local government has been praised by the national finance watchdog for its response to the pandemic but faces severe budget pressures unless the Treasury initiates multi-year settlements, Michael Burton reports.
Fewer than half of local audits done by deadline, watchdog finds
Fewer than half of local public bodies’ 2019-20 audits were completed by last November, despite a deadline already pushed back due to COVID, says a spending watchdog.
Councils left seriously underfunded, NAO finds
Coronavirus has left local authorities seriously underfunded and facing budget cuts unless the Government can create a long-term financial plan for the sector, a study from the National Audit Office (NAO) has warned.
Levelling up risks becoming less than the sum of its parts
There is always political appetite for short-term infrastructure projects, but we need transparency and transformational change to level up, says Zoe Billingham.
EXCLUSIVE: Pressure mounts on Jenrick over audit
Whitehall officials are putting communities secretary Robert Jenrick under pressure to change course after he failed to implement a key recommendation of the Redmond Review, The MJ understands.
Councils' role is vital to a fulsome recovery
Some loved ones will not be around to experience the renaissance when it comes. But for those who are, 'the critical role of local authorities needs to be recognised and underpinned' if the recovery is to be swift, says Abdool Kara.
Steering care through crisis
The entire care market still faces massive challenges. As part of the National Audit Office investigation into care markets, we brought together some experts to debate the issues. Heather Jameson reports.
What a year!
The MJ reflects on another year in local government, significantly influenced by the pandemic that continues to cause havoc heading into 2021. And there’s a reassuring symmetry to the way the year is ending. Martin Ford and Ann McGauran report.
Boost to local test and trace funding
The increase of up to £200m per month follows criticism from the National Audit Office.
Flood funding for councils may not be enough, watchdog finds
The Government is unable to prove councils have enough funding for flood defences, a spending watchdog has discovered.