Cracking the Code January 25, 2008

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director Public Finance A decade of reform and growth in public services has transformed public expectations. Basic services delivered in silos are no longer enough, people expect solutions designed to fit their lives; they want to feel empowered, not managed. Whitehall is now the major barrier to these aspirations. The problem is […]

Empower councils to tackle congestion December 18, 2007

Nigel Keohane, Researcher, NLGN Transport Times The government’s recent policy paper Towards a Sustainable Transport System has put urban congestion at the forefront of its agenda. It is not hard to see why. Without appropriate action, by 2025 there will be an extra 5.7 million cars on the roads and 30% more congestion. Conversely, the […]

Reading the Humpty Dumpty concordat December 17, 2007

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director Guardian Unlimited “When I use a word it means just what I choose it to mean,” said Humpty Dumpty, and so it may be with the concordat signed by the chairman of the Local Government Association, Sir Simon Milton, and the secretary of state, Hazel Blears, this week. With those signatures […]

Abolishing Police Authorities December 7, 2007

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director, NLGN Public Finance As Sir Ronnie Flanagan completes his review of policing he should recommend abolition of Police Authorities moving their powers to elected council leaders. Greater accountability is one of Flanagan’s four themes. It is the golden thread that will help to deliver the other three; reducing bureaucracy, improving neighbourhood […]

Local government can rise to the climate change challenge November 30, 2007

Owen Dallison, Researcher Public Sector Executive Central government is going to miss the 2010 20% carbon reduction target with it expected to be nearer 16%. Central government’s self imposed 60% carbon reduction target for 2050 may have to increase to 80% if it is to make a difference. Gordon Brown has asked the climate change […]

Delivering Accountable Local Police Leadership November 29, 2007

Anthony Brand, Researcher, NLGN eGov Monitor Should police authorities be dissolved and their responsibilities transferred over to local authorities? Anthony Brand from New Local Government Network believes that should be the case to improve local involvement and accountability. Crime is the number one issue in Britain for 40% of the population, up from 25% 10 […]

Jams Today November 24, 2007

Nigel Keohane, Researcher, NLGN LGA First Congestion hit prime time television last week (‘Bottleneck Britain’, 12 November, Channel 4). One would have thought that traffic jams would be the last thing that the commuter would wish to return home to. However, the scheduling is indicative of the gravity of the crisis and the broad desire […]

English Local Government: Take-off velocity or holding pattern? November 7, 2007

Dick Sorabji, Deputy Director, NLGN Auckland University of Technology 2007 has already been the busiest year for new policy on local government since Labour came to office in 1997. All announcements have danced around Michael Lyons’ concept of ‘place shaping’. Lyons argued that councils should not be judged on the delivery of specific services, but […]