Pressing on with spending plans despite uncertainty
Newcastle City Council has just launched its medium-term plan for consultation, says Tony Kirkham. Waiting for stability seems even more risky, he adds.
Scrapping the HRA borrowing cap is not enough
The Society of Municipal Treasurers welcomed the Government’s announcement that the borrowing cap on the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) would be scrapped, but Tony Kirkham says on its own it will not be the 'game-changer'.
Telling the truthful story of local government finance
Our ability to communicate in different ways with residents is something we are aware of but in today’s financial climate we don’t seek to enrich our conversations with customers, writes Tony Kirkham.
Why is children's services demand soaring?
Tony Kirkham looks at the possible reasons for increases in demand and costs for children's services.
Is the apprenticeship levy an opportunity or a joke?
Tony Kirkham supports apprenticeships but says they must be developed in all shapes and sizes so they are a genuine opportunity rather than just another tax.
Short-term objectives reap short-term gains
Tony Kirkham says it is vital councils do not use additional social care cash to put off the evil day.
Crow like a rooster
In the Chinese year of the rooster, Tony Kirkham explains why councils must be trustworthy, hard-working and sociable, but also shameless attention-seekers.
Change your approach to finance
Local government must think differently about business rates retention or communities will suffer, warns Tony Kirkham
An uncertain future?
Councils are unsure what they will look like in three years' time but community engagement is helping to shape that future, explains Tony Kirkham
An eruption in local government
Serious national uncertainty means councils face an uphill struggle to submit efficiency plans, says Tony Kirkham
An open goal on economic growth?
Tony Kirkham asks what a local football team being in the Premier League does for a region's economic growth
Keeping the public on side
Public concern about shrinking services persists and councils must learn to take communities with them and ensure they are part of every solution, says Tony Kirkham.
Why get involved in local government finance
Director of resources at Newcastle City Council, Tony Kirkham, on the local government finance officers of the future.
'Get busy funding, or get busy closing'
Tony Kirkham reflects on the cases of a number of councils facing financial catastrophe, taking lessons from a Hollywood prison-escape classic
It's the little things
Tony Kirkham explains how devolution and business rates reforms must improve the current system
Seeking a sustainable future
Tony Kirkham shares financial management solutions from a landmark meeting of local government treasurers.
We need to fix roof once and for all
It was John F Kennedy who famously said: ‘The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining’ – and on the face of it this seems to be good advice, Tony Kirkham writes.
What being commercial means
Local government could be more commercial but what does that mean, asks director of resources at Newcastle City Council, Tony Kirkham.
Leaving Las Vegas for financial accounts
Just back from Las Vegas – didn’t manage to win any money but did get married in true Vegas style.
Leaving Las Vegas
Tony Kirkham reflects on reforming the business rates system through the prism of poker skills and an imminent visit to the gaming capital of the world.