Business | LocalGov

Thurrock boosted by £500m after sale

26/02/2024

Thurrock Council has received £510m in payments following the sale of Toucan Energy Holdings – the firm that triggered a section 114 notice when it collapsed.

Levelling up requires ‘meaningful’ devolution, business group says

20/02/2024

Business leaders have called for ‘meaningful decision-making powers’ to be devolved to local authorities to help boost left-behind regions.

Council probe leads officers to ‘step back’

19/02/2024

Two senior Guildford and Waverley officers have agreed to temporarily ‘step back’ from their roles amid intensifying investigations into housing maintenance contracts.

Vote planned for first UK coastal tourism tax

19/02/2024

Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole hoteliers will vote on the introduction of a tourist tax as the authority withdraws direct funding amid budget pressures.

Croydon to wind down Brick by Brick

12/02/2024

Croydon LBC’s mayor is set to give the go-ahead to officially wind down the council’s development firm Brick by Brick.

Sector should adopt national branding campaign to boost workforce

05/02/2024

Local government should adopt a national branding campaign to recruit and retain staff amid a worsening workforce crisis, the County Councils’ Network has urged.

West Midlands pilots £24m energy support scheme

16/01/2024

Small businesses across the West Midlands are being offered support to cut their gas and electricity usage.

Government confirms LEP funding

21/12/2023

Eligible councils will receive ‘up to’ £240,000 in 2024-25 to deliver the functions previously covered by Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), the Government has said.

Autumn Statement: Business rates measures to be fully funded

22/11/2023

Plans to extend business rates relief will be fully funded for local authorities, the small print of the Autumn Statement has confirmed.

Land value tax could redistribute billions

09/11/2023

A plan to reform business rates could lead to billions of pounds being redistributed from high land value areas to other parts of the country.

Manifesto push for statutory economic powers

07/11/2023

The Institute of Economic Development (IED) has launched an ‘agenda for change’ with a continued call for councils to be given statutory duties on economic development.

Why know your business checks are vital to prevent fraud

06/11/2023

Barley Laing, UK managing director at Melissa, explains know your business checks and how they can help councils avoid the threat of fraud.

Glasgow clean air bid gets all clear

31/10/2023

A legal challenge to Glasgow's Low Emission Zone (LEZ) from a local business has failed.

Costain named strategic partner on Bradford's £250m investment plan

30/10/2023

Costain has been reappointed as Bradford Council’s strategic delivery partner, in a contract worth up to £5m with an initial run of two years.

Bury Market partially closes for RAAC safety checks

27/10/2023

Bury Market’s indoor stalls, which contain Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete, have been closed for safety works.

London Councils eyes apprenticeship levy devolution

09/10/2023

London Councils has named securing devolution of the apprenticeship levy to its boroughs to fund skills and employment activity as a key short-term priority.

EXCLUSIVE: Council warning over asylum communication

03/10/2023

‘Limited’ Home Office communication over asylum – including poor data sharing - continues to stymie efforts to resolve accommodation problems, councils warn.

Coroner's deadline for council after Rottweiler mauling

02/10/2023

A licensing team has been given until 13 November to respond after being urged to take a ‘more proactive approach’ following a fatal dog attack.

Empowering local businesses to reach net zero

18/09/2023

Power to Change chief executive Tim Davies-Pugh calls on local councils to empower community business to help achieve their climate goals.

Council signs deal for Oxford Street revamp

14/09/2023

Westminster City Council has signed a new agreement and approved the next stage of a £90m investment in Oxford Street this week.

Brum braced for Government intervention

12/09/2023

Birmingham City Council is braced for a wide-ranging Government intervention to help rescue the authority’s bleak finances, and improve political and officer leadership.

Gove tells councils to resource housing enforcement

11/09/2023

Michael Gove has urged councils to commit to providing their housing enforcement teams with the ‘resources and tool they need to act now’.

EXCLUSIVE: Housing pressures may push councils into effective bankruptcy

04/09/2023

Rising housing pressures will force some councils to effectively declare bankruptcy, a local authority chief executive with more than 40 years of experience in the sector has warned.

Fresh calls to raise local housing allowance

23/08/2023

Calls have been made for ministers to increase local housing allowance (LHA) after research revealed 85% of English councils are facing a rise in homelessness.

Scandal-hit firm reports losses

14/08/2023

A firm at the centre of a residential care abuse scandal has reported operating losses of £5.8m for the year to June 2022.

Council criticised for failing to investigate noise complaint

09/08/2023

A couple who owns a company in Gloucester have accused the council of costing them business by not investigating their complaint against a noisy neighbour.

LEP functions to be transferred to upper-tier councils

04/08/2023

The Government has today confirmed it will transfer many Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) functions to upper-tier councils and combined authorities.

Two in five say officer-member relations are poor

01/08/2023

More than 40% of town hall staff and councillors believe officer-member relations are poor and hinder performance, a new study has found.

Third of council procurement spending goes to SMEs

31/07/2023

Just over one-third of English local councils’ procurement spending went directly to SMEs in 2022, new analysis shows.

Warning Birmingham equal pay bill could rise further

26/07/2023

Birmingham City Council’s mammoth equal pay bill could rise further if it fails to meet a tight deadline to fix the issue.

Newcastle to consult on bringing housing in-house

25/07/2023

Newcastle City Council will consult on bringing its housing services back in-house.

Hull plans ‘innovative’ box park venue

18/07/2023

Hull CC will consider developing a ‘box park’ site on what is currently waste land, with the aim of attracting visitors to the city centre and creating jobs.

£150m Derby business park expansion backed by officers

12/07/2023

Planning officers have backed plans to expand a Derby business park at an estimated cost of £150m.

How to support your local businesses more effectively to safeguard their future

29/06/2023

Destin Solutions has worked with one local authority to help them get to grips with their local business landscape through the smarter use of data.

Sheffield apologises 'unreservedly' for trees dispute

21/06/2023

Sheffield City Council has apologised ‘unreservedly’ after a report found the authority mishandled a dispute over the felling of thousands of healthy trees.

'Devastating implications' warning over data threat

30/05/2023

A Government threat to suspend council access to DWP data will have ‘devastating implications’ if Whitehall follows through, an expert has warned.

Gove approves Teesworks probe

25/05/2023

Local government secretary Michael Gove has given the green light for a probe into Teesworks corruption claims.

Pension fund managers called to account on climate

22/05/2023

Local government pensions expert has demanded a meeting with fund managers amid concerns about how investment managers use proxy votes at shareholder meetings.

Audit body in respect call amid tensions

18/05/2023

The organisation responsible for appointing local government auditors has urged ‘everyone to act with appropriate professional respect’ amid tensions.

Shell hits back after council fund criticism

11/05/2023

British multinational oil and gas firm Shell has defended its plans after criticism by UK local authority pension funds.

MPs press for council incentives to recover Covid cash

11/05/2023

Councils should keep some money recovered from Covid grants paid in error or due to fraud, MPs have said.

Cornwall Council’s space centre launches new R&D facility

28/04/2023

The space centre owned by Cornwall Council has opened a new building for businesses developing and launching satellites.

Birmingham face £40m bill for chaotic IT contract

19/04/2023

Troubled Birmingham City Council’s financial recovery has hit a massive setback after details of a chaotic contract designed to streamline accounts emerged.

Labour pledges to revitalise high streets

12/04/2023

Labour will today promote its plan to revitalise ailing high streets through a £700m fund to help small businesses with soaring energy bills.

COVID support prone to ‘error and fraud’

24/03/2023

Support schemes during COVID were prone to fraud and error because of a rushed timetable and a lack of shared plans between local and national government.

Why a circular economy is good for local government

23/03/2023

Wayne Hubbard, CEO of ReLondon, argues that green measures can save councils money and help local businesses.

Pension changes could ease recruitment pressure

21/03/2023

Changes to the pension rules could ease the pressure on senior recruitment in local government, sector figures have suggested.

Dundee workers to strike over outsourcing plan

21/03/2023

More than 300 Dundee City Council workers have voted to strike as they fight plans to outsource services.

Investigator says 'heads must roll' after Croydon collapse

24/02/2023

An independent report into the reasons for the financial collapse of Croydon LBC that has finally been officially published has said ‘heads must roll’.

Auditor calls for national changes after public interest report

01/02/2023

External auditor Grant Thornton has called for national changes after cataloguing a ‘toxic’ culture and ‘dysfunctional environment’ at Cheshire East Council.

Council launches net zero tourism network

26/01/2023

A new network has been launched to promote collaborative, climate-friendly tourism in East Devon, the local council has announced.

Plans floated to tackle secure children's home shortage

21/11/2022

Plans have been floated for a secure children’s home that could be used by councils across London.

Think-tank urges litter and fly-tipping crackdown

07/11/2022

Councils should be required to use outsourced firms if they fail to enforce litter and fly-tipping laws, a think-tank has suggested.

Warning of £75m audit fee increase

03/10/2022

Experts have warned councils could be hit by a £75m increase to their audit fees as details of the next five-year procurement were announced.

Four councils to move away from joint waste contract

30/09/2022

Four councils that came together in a bid to provide improved and more cost-effective environmental services are expected to move away from joint commissioning.

Nandy pledges to boost council housing

26/09/2022

Shadow levelling up secretary Lisa Nandy this week vowed to end the political ‘vandalism’ of UK social housing stock.

Number of local business incubators double

06/09/2022

Business incubator and accelerator programmes in local areas have nearly doubled in number over the last five years, a new study reveals.

Rural businesses to receive £110m boost

05/09/2022

Businesses across rural England are set to benefit from a £110m cash injection to boost productivity and create job opportunities in the countryside.

Thousands of businesses still waiting for COVID relief funds

30/08/2022

Thousands of businesses promised business rates relief through the £1.5bn COVID-19 Additional Relief Fund (CARF) are still waiting to receive council support.

Skyrocketing energy bills threaten local pubs

24/08/2022

Local pubs are under threat from rising energy bills and the impact the cost of living crisis has had on customers, independent brewers warn the Chancellor.

Councils support small businesses with over £21bn COVID support

23/08/2022

Local authorities have allocated £21.3bn in COVID support grants to small businesses, a new report has revealed.

Clark warning over 'risky commercial practices'

22/08/2022

Communities secretary Greg Clark has warned ‘some local authorities are engaging in risky commercial practices’.

Delivering social change through early payment

09/08/2022

Anthony Persse, CEO, Optimum Finance & Saltare, looks at how local authorities can help deliver societal change through the early payment of suppliers.

Call for new PM to boost role of LEPs

08/08/2022

The next PM must better support small businesses through Local Enterprise Partnerships if the UK is to ride the forthcoming recession, business leaders warn.

Council warns planning rules threaten London’s ‘premier shopping district’

27/07/2022

Westminster CC has warned that London’s status as a globally recognised shopping destination is under threat from planning regulations.

Government urged to scale up levelling up

18/07/2022

The Government is focusing on the right issues as part of its levelling up agenda but needs to dramatically scale up investment and effort, according to the Institute for Government (IfG) think-tank.

Early intervention cuts trigger crisis interventions

18/07/2022

Councils, young people and families are trapped in a ‘vicious cycle’ due to the halving of investment in early intervention over the last decade, the largest children’s charities have warned.

LGA Conference: Sector should consider offering four-day week

29/06/2022

Councils may have to consider offering a four-day week in order to attract the staff desperately needed by the sector, a workshop at the Local Government Association’s (LGA) annual conference has heard.

Five high streets join pilot to boost local business

13/06/2022

Five high streets have been chosen to join a pilot scheme aimed at supporting local businesses and reviving town centres.

Councils urged to boost local digital skills

06/06/2022

Councils urged to do more to help small businesses with digital training as evidence suggests businesses are struggling with the social media revolution.

New anti-Putin powers given to councils

26/05/2022

Councils have been handed powers to terminate commercial relationships with firms that have ‘strong links’ to Vladimir Putin’s ‘murderous regime’.

Council offers support to data analysis businesses

19/05/2022

Milton Keynes Council is offering businesses who are operating in the field of data analysis the opportunity to join a business acceleration programme.

City council invites businesses to test-drive electric vans

29/04/2022

Nottingham City Council is inviting businesses to test-drive a new electric van before taking a fully-funded one-month trial.

Nottingham expected to bring housing back under direct control after probes

27/04/2022

Nottingham City Council is expected to bring its housing back under direct control after two independent probes found ‘underlying issues around governance and finance’.

MPs warn of ‘eye-watering’ levels of fraud in COVID scheme

27/04/2022

The Government is ‘complacent’ about preventing ‘eye-watering’ levels of fraud in the COVID Bounceback Loan Scheme (CBLS), new report by the PAC concludes.

Astronaut Tim Peake launches £100m space research hub

15/03/2022

British astronaut Tim Peake has officially opened a new £100m space research hub in Leicester.

Local councils call for access to same funding pots as principal authorities

12/01/2022

Parish and town council leaders have called for local councils to have access to the same funding initiatives as principal authorities.

Councils to deliver £700m grants to businesses hit by Omicron

07/01/2022

Councils will deliver £700m to businesses most affected by the Omicron variant in the next few weeks, the Government has announced.

Omission of gyms from Omicron relief criticised as ‘shameful’

23/12/2021

The industry association representing gyms and sports centres has criticised the Government for omitting their members from the latest COVID support measures.

Welsh government confirms £120m for Omicron-hit businesses

23/12/2021

Wales’ First Minister has confirmed that the Welsh government will make £120m available for nightclubs, retail, and other businesses affected by COVID-19.

Councils to get £100m to support businesses hit by Omicron

22/12/2021

Council leaders have welcomed the Government’s announcement that £100m will be made available for local authorities to support businesses affected by COVID-19.

Mayor Khan calls for COVID business support

17/12/2021

Mayor Khan has joined business leaders from across the capital in urging the Government to support businesses hit by the new COVID-19 restrictions.

Veolia and Suez merger criticised by competition authority

08/12/2021

The merger of Veolia and Suez could lead to a loss of competition in the supply of several waste and water management services in the UK, according to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Spielman: No silver bullet for children's social care

07/12/2021

Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman has warned there is no ‘silver bullet’ to the long-term problems in the children’s social care sector.

Powers warning ahead of new deals

07/12/2021

A new report today warns areas reluctant to accept directly-elected leaders in the next wave of devolution deals may be offered ‘fewer powers and flexibilities’.

Gove warned of climate change floods risk

22/11/2021

Local government secretary Michael Gove was today urged to align UK housing policy with climate change.

Edinburgh tops list of ‘booming’ cities outside of London

19/10/2021

Edinburgh, Manchester and Leeds have topped the list of local authorities with the highest number of high-growth businesses outside of London.

BT steps up small business support by gifting up to £7.5m of street advertising space

21/09/2021

BT is donating up to £7.5m of outdoor advertising space to small businesses, as part of its roll-out of new Street Hub 2.0 units.

Council set to discuss £500,000 loan to support EV battery production

17/09/2021

Coventry City Council is to discuss a £500,000 loan to help the new UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) take on new business.

Council to review development company

17/09/2021

Cambridgeshire CC has brought in external consultants to look into its development company.

Guidance to help councils boost exports published

07/09/2021

Local authority leaders are urging councils to adopt internationalisation strategies that would help local businesses export their goods and services.

Welsh Government looks at holiday home reforms

26/08/2021

Holiday home owners in Wales could be charged the full amount of business rates amid claims people are being priced out of their local area.

UK’s first regional bank granted licence

26/08/2021

The UK’s first regional bank has been granted its banking licence and will open the doors of its first branch in Manchester later this year.

‘Shameless’ COVID fraudsters targeted 41 councils

11/08/2021

The actions of two companies that attempted to defraud dozens of councils out of COVID grants have been labelled ‘despicable’.

Councils approve more than 2,000 pavement licences in past year

04/08/2021

Councils approved requests from businesses for more than 17,000 extra outdoor seats in the past year, new research has discovered.

Small businesses took on five times more debt during pandemic

16/07/2021

Independent businesses offer placemakers an opportunity to create a unique experience but need the support of central and local government, report says.

Reed accuses government of dropping devolution

07/07/2021

Shadow communities secretary Steve Reed has accused the Government of dropping its commitment to devolution.

Council prosecutes firm over traffic jams

23/06/2021

Thames Water has been prosecuted by a London borough after creating what the council said were unnecessary traffic jams three times in less than a fortnight.

Councils urged to 'sharpen commercial edge'

15/06/2021

A new report has argued that allowing councils to sharpen their commercial edge will ‘unlock immense latent place potential’ and help ‘galvanise recovery’.

Local government pension fund makes divestment threat

02/06/2021

Scotland’s largest local government pension fund will drop investments in fossil fuel firms that fail to act on the climate emergency.

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