Cameron on local government and decentralisation

There is an interesting article from the Prime Minister in today’s Observer, setting out progress and plans for decentralisation.  In the paragraph on local government David Cameron hints at local government finance reform amongst other things.  Note the sequencing… power to neighbourhoods, then ‘after that’ power to local government.  “We’re giving more power to neighbourhoods. Neighbours will be…

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Local government Big Society network – get involved

The Big Society needs to be more than just a slogan and local authorities must play a central role in it – but to do this they need to be proactive in helping develop the concepts and the local policies that will make it a reality. The LGiU is launching a learning network will take…

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Coalition speak – busting the new Labour jargon

Over on Community Care for Community Care magazine I’ve written this piece on Coalition speak: “The US educator Kingman Brewer once said that “incomprehensible jargon is the hallmark of a profession”. So it is for social work in the eyes of the new coalition government, as revealed by a leaked memo from civil servants which…

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The Big Society

The following post is an extract from a recent policy briefing on the Big Society, which can be accessed by members through the LGiU website: It is clear that the Big Society could have the potential to positively transform localities; how communities operate, the sort of responsibilities that they have, the services that are available…

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Pickles takes on council lobbyists

Eric has told councils he wants them to stop paying public affairs people to lobby central government. No-nonsense Mr Pickles regards this as part of the bad old politics of the pre-localismlocalismlocalism era. He now wants councillors to “pick up the phone to him”. Fair enough. It does seem ironic, however, that Eric is implementing…

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LGiU and CPSP in the media this week

It’s the dog days of summer. But that’s no excuse for sloppiness. So here’s a catch up on our media mentions this week. The LGiU paper on soical housing has been discussed on Dave Hill’s Guardian blog. And CPSP Director John Tizard, despite being on holiday, has a thoughtful piece in the MJ arguing that…

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Three cheers for tenancy reform

The Coalition Government has approved plans to reform council housing which include the reform measures outlined in the LGiU’s joint report with Westminster council, Room to Move, in September 2009. This is welcome. In Room to Move the LGiU suggested offering a mixed economy of tenure with regular reviews to new council housing tenants. The coalition has…

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Ground Zero mosque, local democracy and common sense

There’s an almighty hullabaloo brewing on the other side of the Atlantic over the Ground Zero mosque. It’s tempting to conclude that this is one of those issues that will always prove contentious. But that’s not quite the case. It’s only since national politicians waded into the debate that things turned ugly. As The Economist…

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Leicester Council and i-Pads: localism this ain’t

First Eric told councils that they couldn’t print newspapers. Then he told them when to collect the bins. Now Grant Shapps has told them that they can’t buy i-Pads for their councillors. The contrast between this and Eric’s promise that local government would no longer be “treated like a fifteen year old girl with really…

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