Planning and Housing

Introduce ‘smart bins’ and hand out tax cuts to drive up recycling, urges think tank

13.05.19: Local authorities should use a new generation of “smart bins” and council tax cuts to drive up household recycling rates, a think tank’s new report has recommended. Bins fitted with sensors could record household recycling...

Councils to be placed under legal duty to house victims of domestic abuse

13.05.19: Councils are to be given a legal duty to provide “safe houses” for victims of domestic abuse and their children, under new plans announced by the prime minister. Theresa May announced the new policy, backed by government funding...

Medway Council in £35m shopping centre purchase as part of major regeneration programme

30.04.19: Medway Council has acquired a high street shopping centre for £35m as part of a major regeneration programme. The unitary authority has taken over the lease of the Pentagon Shopping centre in Chatham town centre for £34.8m, and...

Guildford approves major local plan for thousands of new homes on green belt land

29.04.19: Thousands of new homes are to be built in Guildford up until 2034 after the local council voted to adopt a major local plan which will see 15 villages taken out of the green belt. Despite thousands of objections, Guildford Borough Council h...

Auditors find ‘significant weaknesses’ in record-breaking investment deal and slam Surrey council’s £1bn ‘property roulette’

29.04.19: Auditors have slammed a district council in Surrey which undertook the most expensive property investment ever made by a local authority after it found “significant weaknesses” in its financial processes. KPMG delivered a damnin...

Thurrock Council approves £1bn town centre regeneration scheme to build nearly 3,000 homes

26.04.19: Thurrock Council has approved plans for a £1bn town centre regeneration which will see nearly 3,000 new homes created and generate around 2,200 new jobs. The proposals to transform mainly brownfield sites in Purfleet “into a new...

Surrey CC reveals plans to scrap 200 council buildings and relocate its HQ to save £10m a year

25.04.19: Surrey County Council has unveiled plans to scrap around 200 of its buildings and move to a new HQ in a bid to save tens of millions of pounds. Guildford and Woking have emerged as the frontrunners to host Surrey’s new “civic he...

Cornwall Council criticised by ombudsman after taking more than 11 years to decide man’s village green application

25.04.19: Cornwall Council has been criticised by the local government ombudsman after failing to determine a man’s village green application more than 11 years after he submitted it. Colin Brown first applied to the council to have a piece of...

Councils face £1bn-a-year funding gap for single homelessness as charities give government ‘wake-up call’

24.04.19: Local authorities in England have more than halved their spending on single homeless people since 2008 spending and are spending £1bn less a year, major research from homeless charities have found. St Mungo’s and Homeless Link s...

Council scrutiny report found ‘dishonourable culture’ and aggressive overpricing among housing contractors

16.04.19: Hackney Council has defended the management of its £246m of housing contracts after a probe revealed aggressive pricing, excessive claims for works, and a “dishonourable culture” amongst contractors. The probe, a two-year...

Calls for ‘fundamental review’ of Scottish councils’ funding system with new property levies

15.04.19: A new system of environmental and property levies has been proposed to boost council funding in a call for a “fundamental review” of Scottish local government finances. The joint paper, launched by trade union Unison and the Jim...

New laws to abolish ‘no-fault’ evictions in government overhaul of private rental sector

15.04.19: New proposed laws mean landlords will no longer be able to evict tenants at short notice without a good reason in a government pledge to overhaul the private rental sector. Housing secretary James Brokenshire has announced the new legislati...

Self-build builds potential for more and better homes

15.04.19: The director of The Right to Build Task Force – which advises stakeholders on bringing on more custom and self-build homes – Mario Wolf, who is currently on secondment from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, d...

Councils to press housing developers to pay for new schools under DfE guidance

11.04.19: The government has published new guidance for councils to encourage housing developers to fund the new schools created by their developments. The Department for Education has published the new advice setting out how local authorities can be...

Government awards framework for modular building revolution across the public sector

05.04.19: The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has awarded 24 firms with its framework for a number of modular building projects in the public sector. The modular building solutions framework will “provide the public sector with a low-cost soluti...

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 County council director and CCG CEO to lead STP in joint-role

22/05/2019 County council director and CCG CEO to lead STP in joint-role

Hertfordshire and West Essex STP has announced a job-share partnership between the local county council and CCG to lead the STP. Iain MacBea... more >
Even ‘draconian cuts won’t be enough’ as councils face £50bn funding blackhole

22/05/2019Even ‘draconian cuts won’t be enough’ as councils face £50bn funding blackhole

Councils in England face a funding black hole of over £50bn across the next six years, according to a new report warning that local authori... more >
Government backs Northamptonshire unitary authorities with one-year delay

15/05/2019Government backs Northamptonshire unitary authorities with one-year delay

The government has formally approved the formation of two new unitary councils in Northamptonshire in 2021, a year later than first planned, also... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
 County council director and CCG CEO to lead STP in joint-role

22/05/2019 County council director and CCG CEO to lead STP in joint-role

Hertfordshire and West Essex STP has announced a job-share partnership between the local county council and CCG to lead the STP. Iain MacBeath, the director of adult social care services at ... more >
Even ‘draconian cuts won’t be enough’ as councils face £50bn funding blackhole

22/05/2019Even ‘draconian cuts won’t be enough’ as councils face £50bn funding blackhole

Councils in England face a funding black hole of over £50bn across the next six years, according to a new report warning that local authorities will soon be forced to resort to providing th... more >

the raven's daily blog

Empower your reader, choose print

07/05/2019Empower your reader, choose print

We are on a digital rollercoaster, swirling and twirling through a variety of different online advertising platforms – have we forgotten about traditional marketing platforms such as print? The UK is currently the global leader in advertising, generating £6 for every £1 spent on advertising to the economy. This year, UK ... more >
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Cities as places of opportunity

29/04/2019Cities as places of opportunity

Andrew Carter, chief executive of Centre for Cities, asks: if cities are places of opportunity for the low skilled, why are so many struggling? ... more >
Shaping healthy places with district councils

29/04/2019Shaping healthy places with district councils

District councils are achieving excellent outcomes by shifting health solutions from clinical settings to community ones. They have a significant... more >
The road more taken: delivering future connectivity and mobility

29/04/2019The road more taken: delivering future connectivity and mobility

Localis chief executive Jonathan Werran outlines the challenges to delivering future connectivity and mobility, and asks what policy shifts to ho... more >
The state of the Spring Statement

29/04/2019The state of the Spring Statement

Ben Zaranko, research economist at the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), analyses this year’s Spring Statement and looks ahead to the Spe... more >

interviews

Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need to invest in technology to help make better use of their resources. Bu... more >
Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

17/12/2018Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

One of the public sector’s key technology partners has recently welcomed a new member to its team. Matt Spencer, O2’s head of public ... more >
New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

05/11/2018New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

The new chief executive of one of the new unitary authorities in Dorset has outlined his approach to culture and work with employees, arguing tha... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >

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