Latest Public Sector News

17.10.14

LGA has ‘insufficient contact’ with councils on a daily basis

The LGA has “insufficient contact” with councils on a daily basis, according to its chairman Cllr David Sparks.

He made the revelation during a Q&A session at the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (Solace) Summit in Liverpool, which PSE attended yesterday.

Cllr Sparks said: “I’m acutely aware that…one of the deficiencies of the LGA is the fact that there is insufficient contact on a daily basis with local authorities. That can lead to a situation where it’s almost as if we become a third estate in Whitehall and we have to watch that.”

During his speech he addressed the devolution debate. He outlined his position that he believes people identify with cities, counties, towns and villages, rather than regions. As a result, he said, devolution would look different in different places.

Cllr Sparks said local government would need to argue for devolution to a combination of local authorities. He also warned that gaining more powers and control over funding were not inevitable. He said the challenge was “to make sure people know how relevant local government is”.

“We have got to argue on the basis that it’s devolution to communities through councils,” said Cllr Sparks. “We have to anchor ourselves in local communities, not just because it makes for effective local government but because individuals relate to communities far more than they do to arbitrary boundaries.”

The other highlight at the conference yesterday was a morning session on Public Service Redesign. Barry Quirk, chief executive of London Borough of Lewisham, led a spirited discussion that took a look at public sector services and how they are designed. Helen Lazarus and Gavin Pryke of the Design Council gave a fascinating talk on how services can be designed and explained their process in going about doing so.

The highlight of the session was a funny, and eye opening presentation from David McNulty, chief executive of Surrey Council, who explained how he has helped overhaul the culture and services provided by the authority.

In-depth coverage of the Solace Summit will be featured in the next edition of PSE.

(Image: c. Joe Giddens/PA Wire)

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

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

Northern Powerhouse Partner aims to connect the North once again

02/09/2019Northern Powerhouse Partner aims to connect the North once again

In February this year, official Northern Powerhouse Partner, Cognitive Publishing, delivered EvoNorth 2019.  The two day event was designed to amplify and highlight futur... 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 >