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National defecit, local solutions

After yesterday’s love-in, the tough work of taming our soaring defecit begins. The Evening Standard reports this evening that the NHS will be required to deliver at least £20 billion of efficiency savings. Smarter procurement will have a big role to play in meeting these tough financial targets. The received wisdom is that hospitals will…

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E-mail from Michael Gove to his Civil Servants

Jasmine was at Sanctuary Buildings yesterday when the rainbow was taken down. Now we’re starting to get some clues about what will be going up in its place. Here’s Michael Gove’s e-mail to staff in his new department: Dear colleague I am delighted that the Prime Minister has appointed me Secretary of State for Education…

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Local council elections 2010: results and in-depth analysis

Tracy Gardiner Over one fifth of all local councillor seats were up for election last Thursday. The majority of these were in authorities whose elections are held by thirds. The results netted 15 councils changing control all being gained by Labour. The Conservatives lost a net eight councils and the Liberal Democrats lost control of…

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Smile, though your heart is breaking

Paralysis at the top of government and a £178 billion defecit has cast a slight cloud over local government. The LGA, however, is doing its bit to keep calm and carry on. Gloomy readers will be cheered by its season of song-themed summer debates: 22 June: The first cut is the deepest? Making tough choices…

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Election lessons from the Philippines?

Last Thursday local and national elections took place on the same day in the UK. Today the same thing is happening in The Philippines. You’d be hard-pressed to figure out which one is the developing nation, however. In the UK voters did their democratic duty in wooden booths with a pencil and paper and got…

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Local council elections 2010: Results in (more or less) full

Results as they stand from the BBC. Late results seem to be conforming to yesterday’s pattern. Labour have continued to make gains at the expense of the Conservatives (Ealing, Harrow) and the Lib Dems (Southwark, Brent). Ten councils have switched from NOC to Labour (including Southwark and Brent). In the battle between the Lib Dems…

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Voting for change?

‘Voting for change’ has been a key theme of this election with all the political parties attempting to make it central to their message. Today the main story is the unusual and potentially historic election result that just might presage electoral reform and radical change in the way we do national politics. But did people…

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Local council elections 2010: The story so far

As Andy has said, the big winner in the local election has been Labour at the expense of both the Conservatives and Lib Dems. The key Labour gains have been Enfield from the Conservatives and Liverpool from the Lib Dems. But it’s the Conservatives who’ll be most disappointed (although local government remains resolutely blue). There’s…

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Local council elections 2010: Hope for the Lib Dems?

The Liberal Democrats are doing badly in contests with Labour. However, they seem to be doing a bit better in contests with the Conservatives. Milton Keynes has stayed in NOC but the Lib Dems have gained 3 seats from the Conservatives. They’ve also hung onto power in Sutton – defying an anticipated Conservative surge.

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Local council elections 2010: Bad day for the BNP

The BNP’s march to greater political power has, at times, taken on an air of inevitability. But now they seem to be in retreat. Last night party leader Nick Griffin slumped to third place in Barking and Dagenham. His local lieutenants are faring little better. The BNP councillor in Leeds has lost his seat and…

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