Latest Public Sector News

16.11.17

LGA: Government must speed up devolution to fight funding mayhem

Councils have urged the government to speed up the devolution process and counteract the spread of funding coming from over 70 different centralised sources.

The LGA said individual localised funding pots would create much less confusion and allow councils to spend more effectively and promote growth across the UK.

Currently, more than £23bn spent on growth, regeneration and skills is managed by 22 different government departments and agencies, all offering multiple different funding pots.

But the organisation, which represents local authorities, said devolved skills and employment programmes would be better at addressing specific problems unique to an area.

It also called for a simplified long-term approach to funding for local transport, arguing that this would allow for greater efficiencies and increase the potential for innovation.

“The UK is one of the most centralised economies in the western world, and as a result, has poor levels of productivity,” commented Cllr Mark Hawthorne, chairman of the LGA’s people and places board.

“Councils are best placed to understand the needs of local economies, but are currently having to spend too much time trying to access growth funding for essential projects to improve their local areas. This is frustrating the efforts of councils to build homes, create jobs and invest in infrastructure, such as transport, to boost our economy.

“Despite improvements, the current system for growth and regeneration funding is still unnecessarily bureaucratic and hindering progress in our towns and cities, as well as creating uncertainty for businesses and investors. Simpler, fewer funding streams would help kickstart more projects more quickly.”

The LGA also said more focus should be put on localised digital connectivity, which it argues would allow better facilitation of deals between communities and mobile network operators as well as the potential for faster and more reliable broadband.

In August, the organisation pointed out that it had been two years since the government’s deadline for devolution deals to be submitted, and yet very little progress had been made.

At that time, the LGA looked to Westminster to release new details after Parliament came back for recess. Today, it is asking for a breakthrough at next week’s Autumn Budget.

Top image: ASKhan Photography

Have you got a story to tell? Would you like to become a PSE columnist? If so, click here.

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News

comment

Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... 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 ... more >

the raven's daily blog

Utilising data to best deliver meaningful public services

14/11/2019Utilising data to best deliver meaningful public services

Public Sector Executive’s Matt Roberts explains how living in a modern, interconnected world, as we do, means public sector organisations cannot afford to ignore the rol... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

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 feeling of imminent change than the article James Palmer, mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has penned for us on p28. In it, he highlights... read more >