South east urged to find its voice
Councils in the south east of England have been urged to find a consensus on reorganisation by a local government expert.
Reorganisation battle lines drawn over think-tank report
The bitter war of words between counties and districts over reorganisation stepped up this week as battle lines were drawn around a new think-tank report.
Jenrick dashes county reorganisation hopes
Local government secretary Robert Jenrick has torpedoed plans for widespread reorganisation beyond the three areas he has invited to submit unitary proposals.
Three areas invited to submit unitary proposals
The Government has today invited councils in three areas to submit proposals for the creation of unitary local authorities by April 2023.
Unitary aims to set standard for devo deals
Buckinghamshire Council is to reveal proposals for a devolution deal that it hopes will become a template for non-metropolitan authorities nationwide.
Making it local – real reform over reorganisation
By putting reform ahead of re-organisation in Somerset, the districts have developed a case for change that’s distinct to place-based context and local priorities, say Georgina Cox and Alex Parmley
Unitary 'mayhem' has failed to arrive thus far
The public may care often care a lot about key local services but aren't so interested in the structure of local government, says Ben Page. He expects councils' endless ability to just 'get on with it' on instructions from Whitehall will continue.
Central government needs to stand back
Dr Jonathan Carr-West asks if anyone has any sense of a sustained strategic focus on tackling the pandemic from government, and he feels only local government can manage the alignment of social, environmental and economic recovery that we need.
Williams in reorganisation rescue bid to Boris
The County Councils’ Network’s (CCN) Conservative leader has made a brazen direct appeal to Prime Minister Boris Johnson as he seeks to salvage the reorganisation agenda.
Future Forum: Business rates retention is doomed
Moves to fund local government using the proceeds from business rates are ‘doomed,’ according to a financial expert.
Five ways to be ahead of the curve
Ruth Morgan and Sean Anstee put forward five recommendations to consider when putting together proposals for local government reform. ‘Let’s grab the opportunity to secure lasting change for our communities’, they add.
County unitaries join growing network
Two county unitaries are among five local authorities that have joined the growing Unitary Councils’ Network (UCN) as tensions bubble around reorganisation.
'A really terrible time' for reorganisation
There is never going to be a good time for local government reorganisation, says Paul Shevlin. 'There is definitely a really terrible time and this is it.'
District demands withdrawal of unitary plan
Nuneaton & Bedworth BC has confronted Warwickshire CC over proposals to create a new authority covering the whole county.
We can’t wait any longer for major reform of local government
The current patchwork of local government needs to change if we are to have any hope of levelling up places across the country, argues Simon Jeffrey of Centre for Cities.
The dark side of Clarke
Last week, the sector mourned the sudden departure of local government minister Simon Clarke.
Forget the charm, local government needs certainty
Heather Jameson asks if Boris Johnson’s surprise appearance on a local government call this week could be the start of a charm offensive. 'Forget the charm, a decent finance settlement and devolution deal will do the trick', she adds.
Think-tank proposes axing hundreds of councils
England’s 349 councils should be replaced with 69 unitary authorities, a think-tank has argued.
Down and out?
Plans for a full-scale local government reorganisation have been thrown into doubt, with Downing Street being blamed for delays.
Is there the political will to push through reorganisation?
Simon Clarke's unexpected resignation as local government minister begs the question of what happens now on devolution and reorganisation, says Heather Jameson. There are many reasons why restructuring is a problem, she adds.