Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive, LGIU, said:
“To see the largest local authority in the country effectively declare bankruptcy is a sobering moment. Questions will no doubt be asked about decision making and governance in Birmingham. But questions should also be asked about an inconsistent, fragmented and short-term funding system that is driving dozens of councils across the country to financial ruin.
LGIU has been supporting councils for 40 years, but our members tell us that they are experiencing the most acute crisis they can remember. Not only has the amount of funding been slashed by government but councils have been made to rely on short term, piecemeal funding that inhibits effective financial management.
Central government has kept councils living from hand to mouth and from year to year for far too long. Birmingham is the biggest council to fail so far, but unless something changes, it won’t be the last.”