Laura Sharman 09 December 2014

Birmingham warned to 'radically' improve or face intervention

Birmingham Council has been warned to ‘radically improve’ the way it is run and delivers services in an independent review published today.

The review, conducted by Sir Bob Kerslake, was commissioned following the ‘Trojan Horse’ school scandal earlier this year. It has concluded the council lacks a clear vision for the city and must make ‘sweeping changes’ into how the authority is run.

It also revealed that deep rooted problems are being ‘swept under the carpet’ rather than being tackled such as low skills or economic growth.

Sir Kerslake said: ‘Over several years the council has failed to resolve its financial issues and the poor performance of its children’s services or to respond to the large number of people in the city with low skills. Collectively, despite the thriving physical regeneration of the city centre, this has held the city back.’

Local government secretary, Eric Pickles, said he strongly backed the review and warned the council would face further intervention if it did not improve within a year.

‘For too long the council has been a dysfunctional organisation which has failed to get to grips with the problems its faces and the economic challenges of the future,’ he said.

‘It must stop looking to central government to bail it out and come up with innovative solutions itself. Now is not a time for the council to feel sorry for itself, but to start providing the leadership, skills and services its people need as the best authorities are doing across the country.’

The review recommends a change in the electoral cycle from 2017 to give residents the chance to vote for the whole council every four years, rather than the current system which splits local elections into returning a third of the authority every year.

Sir Kerslake is also calling for an independent improvement panel to be established to ensure the council delivers on the report’s recommendations.

In response, the council it was glad the review recognised Birmingham had the potential to be a regional economic powerhouse in the future, and has made ‘significant improvement’ over recent years.

A statement from leader of the council Sir Albert Bore and chief executive Mark Rogers said the council accepts ‘the broad thrust of all the recommendations in the report’ and it would be immediately implementing five of the recommendations.

Visit The MJ to read their interview with Sir Bob Kerslake.

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Health Care Assistant - A1 Home Care - Chelmsford

Essex County Council
£10 - £11 per hour
Essex County Council (ECC) are delighted to be supporting A1 Home Care to recruit Health Care Assistant for their home care service based in Chelmsfor England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Administration Officer

The Coal Authority
£19,137 to £21,264
To apply please click the Apply Now link below. Mansfield, Nottinghamshire
Recuriter: The Coal Authority

Programme Assistant

City of York Council
£11.37 per hour
We are WorkwithYork and we are working with our client to find a Programme Assistant working with the Homes for Ukraine project. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

IT Security Manager

City of Bradford MDC
£42,614 - £47,665 pa
This is an exciting opportunity for an enthusiastic IT Security Manager Bradford, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of Bradford MDC

Recovery Support Worker x 3

Wakefield Council
£12,963.50 - 14,113.00
We are seeking to appoint suitably skilled, motivated and caring recovery support workers Wakefield, West Yorkshire
Recuriter: Wakefield Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.