Service Transformation

27.01.17

Districts committed to innovative and collaborative ways of working, says APPG chair

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for District Councils held the first meeting of its inquiry into collaboration and devolution this week.

The meeting saw the cross-party panel of MPs and peers taking evidence from councils involved in particularly innovative partnerships with other councils.

Mark Pawsey MP, chair of the APPG, said following the meeting: “Districts are committed to innovative and collaborative ways of working that improve outcomes for their communities.

“This inquiry by the APPG for District Councils is about identifying the best examples of this collaboration and establishing why they are succeeding and the lessons other districts can learn from them.

Councils represented at the first meeting included Hart (representing the Five Councils Partnership), Kettering, Oxford City, Selby and South Cambridgeshire as they sought to explain how collaboration across political, financial and geographical divides had helped them deliver effective services.

Topics covered in the meeting included housing, public service reform, effective working with county councils and the clustering of district councils as a way of organising collaboration.

“The inquiry got off to a great start with a wide-ranging evidence session about what makes a successful partnership between councils; and the importance of place in delivering local services,” Pawsey added.

“The APPG’s Select Committee style inquiry will highlight the innovative work district councils are engaged in across the country and a report setting out the conclusions will be available in May.”

The APPG has received submissions from over 70 councils and will hold three further inquiry sessions before presenting its findings at a parliamentary reception this summer.

The APPG is being supported by the District Councils’ Network and DeMontfort University’s Local Governance Research Unit. The DCN will be writing in the Feb/March edition of PSE about the power of collaboration in local government.

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