14 years on: The ‘winners’ and ‘losers’
New data shows how £13.9bn of cumulative cuts in local authority funding in the 14 years since 2010-11 have hit the sector. Ann McGauran and Maks Wieczorski report.
Don’t fall for all the hype behind AI
Natalie Cramp talks to Ann McGauran about some of the opportunities, risks and challenges emerging from the use of data and AI in local government.
A hike too far?
The Government has allowed some authorities to hike council tax while refusing Somerset Council’s bid to take the same step. Meanwhile, the system remains ‘highly regressive’. Ann McGauran reports.
Dream big, start small
Ann McGauran reports on the Local Government AI Summit, which was aimed at providing the sector with a deeper understanding of the technology’s potential to solve real problems.
Tapping into digital and tech for public good
AI is arguably this year’s key technology trend, with generative AI in particular and large language models promising great benefits for the public sector. Ann McGauran reports.
Awakening of a sleeping giant
Ambition, opportunities and green technologies. South Derbyshire DC has huge potential and is working to unleash it. Ann McGauran reports.
National children's placement strategy required to remove 'profiteering'
The president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services has called for a national placement strategy to remove the risks posed by some ‘clearly profiteering’ large providers.
The more things change
Funding and asylum policy are just two of the themes that have bookended an eventful year in local government. Martin Ford and Ann McGauran look at some of the big developments and talking points from the year as the sector braces for 2024.
AI’s tipping point
How will artificial intelligence change local government and the lives of residents – and can the sector make the most of the opportunities it offers while mitigating risks? Ann McGauran reports,
No quick fix as challenges grow
Ann McGauran reflects on last week’s NCAS conference, where the general mood was of determination despite a morale-testing lack of financial backing for the sector from the recent Autumn Statement.
NCASC: 'Watch this space' on spiralling cost of children's placements
The sector should ‘watch this space’ for an announcement from the Government on the spiralling costs of private placements for children, a minister said today.
NCASC: Social care 'doing a good job' getting investment
Those working in adult social care are ‘already doing a very good job at getting investment and commitments to reform’, according to government minister Helen Whately.
Labour must 'grasp the nettle' early on social care costs
Labour will ‘have to grasp the nettle fairly early on’ if it wins the General Election about the long-term funding of social care, shadow minister Andrew Gwynne has said.
NCASC: Sector 'slow in making strong case to Treasury for social care cash'
The sector has been slow in making a robust case for social care funding from the Treasury, says president of ADASS Beverley Tarka.
NCASC: Government must make 'some difficult decisions' on children's services
The Government must make ‘some difficult decisions’ if it is ‘not able or willing’ to provide funding to meet the financial pressures in children’s services, the Association of Directors of Children’s Services has said.
Fulfilling a crucial role for children
As directors of children’s services prepare to attend the National Children and Adult Services Conference, Ann McGauran assesses the challenges and rewards of this important role
Town halls still battling cost hikes
Councils are continuing to battle with the impact of cost increases on budgets despite consumer inflation falling by half since earlier this year, says the leader of England’s county treasurers.
What Katie did next
Katie Kelly talks to Ann McGauran about why she has broken out of retirement to follow her passion for service and belief in the incredible power that lies within communities.
Why regional policy failed
A report looks at the lessons from in-depth interviews with experts on why UK regional policy has been a failure for 40 years. Ann McGauran reports from a fiery panel discussion on the findings.
Newham wins landmark cladding removal case
Newham LBC has become the first council in Britain to successfully prosecute a building owner for failing to remove flammable cladding.