Economy and Infrastructure

Councils divided as HS2 Bill is given Royal Assent

23.02.17: HS2 will be the “catalyst” in driving economic growth in the West Midlands as the eagerly anticipated high-speed rail link was given Royal Assent in Parliament today. However, Camden Council, which represents one of the most affected...

Outrage from employers’ groups at ‘illegal’ changes to business rate appeals

20.02.17: Business leaders have hit out at the DCLG’s planned changes to business rates that are set to be voted at the next revaluation on 1 April, arguing that a clause in the proposed changes is “potentially illegal”. In a letter...

Tapping into county potential key to Industrial Strategy success

20.02.17: Cllr Anne Western, County Councils Network (CCN) spokeswoman for economic growth and leader of Derbyshire County Council, argues that the success of the government’s Industrial Strategy depends on whether the potential of counties is tappe...

WYCA: HS2 can ‘only be as good as local rail connections make it’

17.02.17: It is of vital importance that investment in the conventional rail network continues over the next 20 years during the development of HS2 to ensure that West Yorkshire becomes “truly HS2-ready” and the project’s benefits can be...

LGA: Proper needs assessment must underpin 100% business rates retention

16.02.17: The LGA has welcomed the DCLG’s consultation on the move towards 100% business rates retention reform in local councils that was launched yesterday, but reiterated that the move must be “fundamentally underpinned” by a proper n...

Councils banned from boycotting suppliers after Israel scandal

14.02.17: Councils will now be legally forbidden from boycotting companies and countries unless restrictions have already been put in place by central government, new DCLG plans have outlined. The move, which will force councils by law to stop locall...

LGO: Parking enforcement ‘should be fair to all’

06.02.17: Councils in England should be fairer in how they handle parking fines issued to drivers, the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO) has said. In its latest report, ‘Fairer Fines,’ the LGO concluded that some drivers are being treated...

DCLG awards £650m local growth funding to LEPs

03.02.17: The government has announced the latest instalment of its Local Growth Fund, awarding £650m to 11 local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) across London, the south east and east of England. The communities secretary, Sajid Javid, confirme...

Councils call for ‘greater freedom and funding’ to deliver industrial strategy

24.01.17: Councils have responded to the government’s new green paper setting out the UK’s industrial strategy by asking for greater freedom and funding to deliver its aims. The strategy outlines the government’s commitments to futu...

Tax policy system is not fit for purpose, experts say

17.01.17: The government’s current tax policy system must be changed in order to reduce taxpayer confusion and cut down on errors, experts have said. ‘Better budgets: making tax policy better’, a joint report published today by the...

Government allocates £1.2bn roads funding, but councils say more needed

13.01.17: Councils have welcomed the government’s allocation of £1.2bn of funding for them to spend on upgrading streets in 2017-18, but warned that “substantially more” is needed to bring the country’s road network up to scr...

Councils warn of ‘tipping point’ year for potholes

09.01.17: Councils have warned they face a ‘tipping point’ in their efforts to maintain local roads, as the repair bill for potholes is estimated to reach £14bn. According to statistics from the Asphalt Industry Alliance’s (AI...

Greater investment and collaboration needed to tackle pothole repair backlog

06.01.17: Cllr Martin Tett, leader of Buckinghamshire County Council and transport spokesman at the LGA, reflects on the ever-growing pothole repair backlog and what actions must be taken to tackle this issue. As leader of a county council, I am acut...

A united approach for local government procurement post-Brexit

28.12.16: Paul Bell, national officer for local government at Unison, looks at the long-term impact of Brexit on public sector procurement, and what councils should be doing to plan ahead for the period of uncertain change. The decision of the UK&rsq...

Picking up the infrastructure investment gauntlet

28.12.16: Cllr Kieran Quinn, leader of Tameside Borough Council and chair of the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum (LAPFF), outlines the social value benefits and commercial returns that can be achieved by LGPS funds investing in infrastructure. Bri...

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LGA: New homes data positive, but still failing to meet growing housing need

24/02/2017LGA: New homes data positive, but still failing to meet growing housing need

New figures released by the government have shown that the number of new build homes has continued to rise to its highest level since 2007, but c... more >
Lancashire still pushing for devo deal despite two councils withdrawing support

24/02/2017Lancashire still pushing for devo deal despite two councils withdrawing support

Plans put forward for a devolution deal to join together 15 councils in Lancashire in a combined authority will still go ahead, despite two counc... more >
Councils divided as HS2 Bill is given Royal Assent

23/02/2017Councils divided as HS2 Bill is given Royal Assent

HS2 will be the “catalyst” in driving economic growth in the West Midlands as the eagerly anticipated high-speed rail link was given ... more >

editor's comment

21/02/2017Untapped potential

As PSE went to press, the government had just released its Industrial Strategy green paper, which has an ambitious aim to “improve living standards and economic growth by increasing productivity and driving growth across the whole country”.  Overall, the strategy was welcomed across the public sector. However, as you&rsqu... read more >

last word

Some libraries are better than others

Some libraries are better than others

Helen Milner, chief executive of Good Things Foundation, formerly the Tinder Foundation, expands on the organisation’s recent claims that protecting libraries at all costs could be hol... more > more last word articles >
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And justice for all

23/02/2017And justice for all

Nothing less than a ‘whole-place’ pooling of public service budgets and devolution of criminal justice system powers to local level can create the conditions for community transformation, argue former communities secretary Hazel Blears and Lord Patel, chairman of the Mental Health Act Commission. Reform of the Criminal Justice... more >
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Shaping the future of local government through districts

23/02/2017Shaping the future of local government through districts

Mark Pawsey (pictured), the MP for Rugby and the chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for District Councils, explains why he hopes t... more >
Bristol: the booming smart city

23/02/2017Bristol: the booming smart city

Barney Smith, CEO at Bristol Is Open, explains how the innovative project can help make cities more liveable and sustainable. Bristol is the... more >
Where next for devolution?

23/02/2017Where next for devolution?

Andrew Walker, policy expert on devolution at the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU), explains why devolution in England needs a shot in th... more >
Introducing learning analytics

23/02/2017Introducing learning analytics

Learning analytics make use of the data generated as we learn and teach in order to improve learning and teaching. Rebecca Ferguson, a senior lec... more >

interviews

McMahon: I worry that the public are not part of the devolution conversation

20/12/2016McMahon: I worry that the public are not part of the devolution conversation

Jim McMahon, Labour’s shadow minister for local government and devolution, talks to PSE’s David Stevenson about the need to radically... more >
Solace president mandate: Champion diversity and celebrate great public services

20/12/2016Solace president mandate: Champion diversity and celebrate great public services

Jo Miller, the recently-elected president of Solace, talks to PSE about the need for championing great public services and ensuring inclusion at ... more >
The secret to the success of one public estate

19/08/2016The secret to the success of one public estate

Central government has faced strong criticism of its many estate schemes in recent years, but one in particular seems to steer clear of the backl... more >
Joint ventures: Are we better together?

19/04/2016Joint ventures: Are we better together?

Vivien Holland, local government advisory director at Grant Thornton UK LLP, examines the potential of Joint Ventures for local authorities going... more >

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