Debt

Council to save £143m after ending LOBO loan

07/05/2019

Newham Council is set to £143m after successfully terminating its Lender Option Borrower Option (LOBO) loans with NatWest bank.

Amount of unpaid council tax rises to £3bn

26/04/2019

The total amount of unpaid council tax has risen to more than £3bn, according to the latest figures.

Whitehall pledges to end aggressive council tax debt collection

11/04/2019

The way local authorities recover unpaid council tax is to be reviewed by the Government in a bid to protect vulnerable residents from aggressive debt collection.

Early intervention key to helping those at risk of falling into debt, says report

01/03/2019

Councils in Wales are being urged by a think tank to do more to support those at risk of falling into debt given the large council tax increases on the horizon.

Universal Credit claimants are falling behind on housing payments warns Citizens Advice

06/02/2019

A cut in the time people have to wait for payment of Universal Credit has made no difference to the number struggling with debt, according to campaigners.

Cuts to council tax support have created ‘sizeable’ increase in arrears

29/01/2019

Cuts to council tax support (CTS) have led to a surge in unpaid tax, new research from the Institute for Fiscal Studies has revealed.

Nearly one in three council-run secondary schools are in the red

11/01/2019

Almost one in three local authority maintained secondary schools were in a financial deficit in 2017-18, new research has revealed.

Campaigners calls for action on rule-breaking bailiffs

14/11/2018

Campaigners are calling for action to stop bailiffs causing people increased stress, anxiety and financial hardship.

Care home provider on verge of collapse, regulators warn

07/11/2018

The financial problems of one of the UK’s largest care providers poses ‘credible risk of service disruption’ to local provision of social care, regulators say

Kent CC pays back LOBO loan early

02/11/2018

Kent County Council has reached an agreement with Royal Bank of Scotland to pay back its LOBO loan debt early.

Council chiefs blast Treasury decision to delay gambling reform

02/11/2018

Local government leaders have said the decision to delay a planned reduction in the maximum stake on fixed-odds betting terminals is ‘extremely concerning.’

Council spent £4m clearing illegal traveller site

16/10/2018

The local authority responsible for removing the illegal Dale Farm traveller encampment is seeking to recover the over £4m of costs incurred by the action.

Charity reveals ‘alarming scale’ of council tax debt

05/10/2018

A charity has revealed what it describes as an ‘alarming scale’ of problem debt with council tax arrears accounting for a large proportion of it.

Payday loans or credit unions?

24/09/2018

With councils being urged to provide payday loans to their staff through payroll systems, Mark Whitehead considers if this is a better option than using existing schemes like credit unions.

Councils urged to offer staff low interest loans

12/09/2018

Local authorities should offer staff low interest loans that could be paid back through their payroll system, according to a new report by ResPublica.

Auditors warn councils over debt chasing

06/09/2018

Funding pressures in local government could mean councils are pursuing debt repayments ‘too quickly and too aggressively,’ a report by national auditors suggested today.

Councils sending bailiffs to 200 firms every day over unpaid business rates

28/08/2018

Councils are sending bailiffs to more than 200 businesses every day due to unpaid rates, a new investigation has revealed.

Households owe £18.9bn on everyday bills

21/08/2018

Households owe nearly £19bn on essential bills such as council tax and utilities, Citizens Advice has warned today.

Council plans to phase out use of bailiffs

01/08/2018

Bristol City Council is planning on phasing out the use of enforcement agents to collect unpaid debts.

MPs accuse councils of ‘overzealous’ debt collection

26/07/2018

The overzealous and uncompromising collection of debt by local councils is driving vulnerable people into further financial difficulty, MPs have warned today.

Housing bodies warn of increase in Universal Credit rent arrears

12/07/2018

Nearly three-quarters of households on Universal Credit are in rent arrears compared to 26% of all households, new research has revealed.

Universal Credit is a ‘flawed’ system, housing organisations warn

10/07/2018

A group of housing organisations yesterday warned that Universal Credit is ‘flawed’ and is causing debt, suffering and hardship for millions.

Digital debt recovery could save councils ‘thousands of pounds’, report says

05/07/2018

Local authorities could save ‘thousands of pounds’ by using digital debt recovery, a new report argues.

Councils accused of 'aggressive' debt collection

04/07/2018

Councils using 'aggressive and frightening' debt collectors have been accused of making people feel suicidal, according to the findings of a new report.

Half of people reluctant to ask council for financial help

23/05/2018

A new survey has revealed that 52% of people believe there is a 'negative stigma' attached to asking their local council help if they fall into debt.

Blackpool considers lending £27.1m to NHS Trust

16/05/2018

Blackpool Council has proposed loaning a local NHS trust over £27m to help the health body invest in frontline services.

Troubled Families Programme achieves 'significant' progress

28/03/2018

Government welcomes the progress made by Troubled Families Programme as a new report shows local authorities have worked with nearly 300,000 eligible families.

Care provider Four Seasons temporarily bailed out

09/02/2018

The struggling care provider Four Seasons has today signed a deal with a hedge fund which will see £70m invested to enable it to keep operating.

Revaluation of rates leading to councils referring 41,000 businesses to bailiffs

10/01/2018

Councils have referred an estimated 41,000 businesses to bailiffs over unpaid business rates, new research has revealed.

Scottish councils show signs of ‘financial stress’

28/11/2017

Councils in Scotland are showing signs of 'increasing financial stress' and some could run out of money in two or three years, spending watchdogs have warned.

London borough to stop using bailiffs to chase debt

23/11/2017

Bailiffs will no longer be used to collect council tax debt under a new joint venture launched by Hammersmith & Fulham Council.

Labour blasts 'failed austerity' as £150bn added to national debt

22/11/2017

Labour blasts the Government’s ‘failed austerity policies’ as new figures reveal nearly £150bn has been added to the national debt since last year.

Government to write off millions of housing associations' debt

16/11/2017

The Government is expected to wipe off around £60m in debt from housing associations in a bid to deliver more social housing.

Charity reports ‘deeply troubling’ use of bailiffs by councils

14/11/2017

The number of bailiffs being used by councils to collect debts has risen by 14% in the last two years, new research has revealed today.

London borough warns Universal Credit pushing tenants into rent arrears

24/10/2017

Rent arrears for those claiming Universal Credit (UC) are worse than under the previous housing benefit system, new report reveals.

Newcastle signs up to Council Tax Protocol

03/10/2017

Newcastle has become the latest council to sign up to a new protocol to help people struggling with council tax debts.

Charities at ‘risk of collapse’ due to unaffordable LGPS debt

26/09/2017

Charities should be allowed to exit the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) to stop them building up unaffordable debt, according to a new report.

One in six people live with ‘problem debt’

20/09/2017

Over eight million people in the UK are living with ‘problem debt’, warns advice service.

Benefit deductions under UC risk pushing people into debt, charity warns

14/09/2017

The increase in benefit deductions with the roll-out of Universal Credit (UC) risks pushing people ‘deeper into debt’, charity warns.

Universal Credit pushing people into ‘spiral of debt’, charity warns

11/09/2017

The expansion of Universal Credit (UC) is a ‘disaster waiting to happen’ because many of its problems have not been solved including the long wait for payments, charity warns.

Quarter of a million private renting families burdened with ‘debt’, charity finds

08/09/2017

Around 250,000 private renting families in England are burdened with ‘serious debt’ because they have to move house frequently, a housing charity has warned.

Funeral debt at ‘all-time high’, research reveals

31/08/2017

Funeral debt has increased to an all-time high as funeral costs increase, research reveals.

Council writes off £1.2m of debt

28/07/2017

Darlington Borough Council has announced it will write off debts of more than £1.2m for the second year running.

Embracing best practice in debt recovery

20/03/2017

The Civil Enforcement Association responds to the Taking Control report calling for reforms of tax, fine and debt enforcement.

Debt charities call on councils to ‘stamp out’ bad practices by bailiffs

14/03/2017

Local authorities have key role in ‘stamping out’ bad debt collection practices by bailiffs by ensuring fair treatment, charities say.

Universal Credit has 'devastating impact' on rent arrears says research

16/01/2017

The amount owed in rent arrears for people claiming Universal Credit and living in council housing has nearly doubled in the past year, new research has revealed.

Over half of councils targeting debtors’ homes to recover unpaid tax

21/11/2016

More than half of councils are now using ‘charging orders’ to recover unpaid council tax, new research has revealed.

City bosses back credit union loan in Glasgow

09/11/2016

A low-cost loan to help residents avoid costly payday lenders has been launched with support from Glasgow City Council.

Councils who chase debt may ‘damage’ children’s mental health

23/09/2016

Local councils who chase families over unpaid debts may be ‘inflicting real damage’ to children’s mental health, charity warns.

Council tax problems ‘largest debt issue’ in Wales

21/09/2016

Council tax arrears is now the largest debt issue in Wales, according to charity.

Use of bailiffs to recover tax doubled in London, campaigners say

02/09/2016

The use of bailiffs to recover council tax debts shot up by more than half in London last year, according to campaigners.

Local authorities: it’s time for a rethink around how debt is collected

05/08/2016

Why are local authorities and government bodies continuously getting it so wrong on debt collection? Chris Cullen of Echo Managed Services investigates.

Councils criticised for treatment of those in problem debt

19/07/2016

Local government is one of the worst sectors for treating people in problem debt unfairly, according to the results of a new survey.

Councils must ‘review their debt collection practices’, charity says

08/07/2016

Council tax debt collection tactics are driving people into more debt, charity argues.

Councils high on worst practice list for debt collection

09/05/2016

Local government one of the worst sectors in the UK when it comes to collecting debt, report finds.

Councils urged to stop using bailiffs to chase council tax debt

04/05/2016

Charities are urging councils to stop using bailiffs to chase council tax debts, warning enforcement action can deepen resident's financial problems.

Union calls for amnesty on ‘tsunami’ of council debt

19/04/2016

The Government should wipe out £2.5bn worth of pre-devolution debt owed by Scottish councils, according to trade union Unite.

Bailiffs should not be used to collect debt from vulnerable people, charity warns

12/04/2016

The Government should stop local authorities from passing council tax debts to bailiffs in the case of vulnerable residents, according to the Money Advice Trust (MAT).

Councils better debt collectors than Whitehall

08/01/2016

Councils are treating people better than central government when chasing debt, according to support charity Citizens Advice.

Increase in local government borrowing causing 'considerable uncertainty'

22/10/2015

Local authorities borrowed £1.6bn more in the first half of this year compared to 2014, according to figures published yesterday by the Office for National Statistics.

Boosting public sector productivity could save £72m claims report

15/10/2015

The public sector is facing a decade of recalibration to adjust to lower spending levels, according to a joint report by Deloitte and Reform.

Councils used bailiffs 2.1 million times last year says charity

27/08/2015

Councils referred 2.1 million debts to bailiffs last year, an increase of 16% in the last two years according to a new report.

One-stop finance shop opened by Sheffield Council

10/08/2015

Sheffield City Council has become the first in the country to open a one-stop-money shop to help residents avoid payday and high interest lenders.

Council tax arrears becomes biggest debt issue in Wales, says charity

04/08/2015

Council tax debt has become the largest arrears related problem in Wales, with Citizens Advice reporting a 51% rise in reported cases last year.

Bailiffs sent to 12,000 of London's poorest homes over council tax

30/07/2015

Bailiffs were sent to over 12,000 of the poorest Londoners who were behind on their council tax payments last year, a report has revealed.

Councils failed to see risks of LOBO loans, MPs told

22/07/2015

Councils were persuaded to take out £15bn in high interest loans despite no officers in local government understanding the risks involved, a committee of MPs have been told.

Betts calls for inquiry into ‘outrageous’ LOBO loans

07/07/2015

An inquiry into how councils were sold £15bn of high interest loans could be launched, following last night’s documentary from Channel 4 Dispatches.

Refinancing PFI debt

07/07/2015

Mark Dennison outlines what local authorities should consider when looking to refinance their Private Finance Initiative debts.

More councils using bankruptcy orders to chase council tax debt

30/06/2015

A third of local authorities used Bankruptcy Orders last year to recover council tax arrears, new research is revealing.

Almost £100m of unpaid tax owed to Scottish councils

17/06/2015

Scottish local authorities are owed almost £100m in unpaid council tax from last year, despite a steady improvement in collection rates – figures reveal.

Tenants 'living in fear' as evictions hit record high

15/05/2015

The number of tenants evicted from their homes has climbed to a six-year high, as rising rents and welfare cuts leave families 'living in fear'.

Study shows low-income families struggling with welfare reforms

26/03/2015

The Government’s welfare reforms have caused social housing tenants to run up debts or reduce spending on food, according to a new study.

Children left ‘frightened’ by council bailiffs warns report

26/03/2015

Councils have been accused of scaring children in their homes by sending round ‘aggressive and intimidating’ bailiffs.

Scottish councils urged to better control borrowing

19/03/2015

Scottish councillors must improve scrutiny over borrowing if local authorities are to manage their near £15bn of debt – auditors have warned.

Survey reveals one in eight people in council tax debt

17/03/2015

One in eight adults have missed at least one council tax payment in the past year, according to new research.

Councils accused of aggressive enforcement action

10/03/2015

London boroughs are too aggressive when it comes to council tax debt recovery, according to a report by the London Assembly.

Council tax becomes most common debt problem, charity says

16/02/2015

Council tax debt has overtaken credit card arrears to become the most common financial issue for British households, according to Citizens Advice.

Man commits suicide after council chased him for benefit overpayment

05/02/2015

A retired gardener took his own life after alterations to the benefits system left him owing Newham Council more than £800.

Councils fear official stats are hiding ‘true scale’ of homelessness

04/02/2015

The problem of homelessness is far worse than official figures show, according to warnings from councils.

Councils in Wales urged to bolster support for tenants as welfare reforms hit home

08/01/2015

Welfare reforms have hit tenants in Wales the hardest and social landlords are struggling to cope with the fallout, a public spending watchdog has warned.

Council tax arrears highest in Scotland, debt charity finds

17/12/2014

Council tax arrears are at their highest in Scotland, with average debts almost double the UK average – a charity has warned.

Councils urged to act on problem debt and cut £8.3bn bill

08/10/2014

Local and central government must show ‘concerted effort’ to tackle problem debt if the multi-billion pound cost to the UK is to fall.

New law to end pursuit of poll tax debts in Scotland

03/10/2014

The Scottish government has moved to prevent local authorities using the electoral register to chase people with debts under the historic poll tax.

Council given 'taste of own medicine' as bailiffs seize computers

01/10/2014

Bailiffs have seized thousands of pounds worth of equipment from a north London council to repay money owed to a resident.

Highways jobs

Director, Governance and Improvement

City of York Council
£87,623 to £97,149
We are looking for an exceptional individual to be appointed to the position of Director of Governance and Improvement. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Assistant Director, Development Management and Building Control

London Borough of Waltham Forest
c£80,000 per annum
There is a real buzz about our corner of London.  Waltham Forest, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Waltham Forest

Chief Fire Officer

West Sussex County Council
Competitive Salary plus Financial Support for Recruitment and Retention
We are looking for an exceptional individual who can lead our Fire & Rescue Service Chichester, West Sussex
Recuriter: West Sussex County Council

Commercial Director, Regeneration, Planning and Delivery

London Borough of Waltham Forest
Up to c£114,000 per annum
There is a real buzz about our corner of London.  Waltham Forest, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Waltham Forest

Inclusion Support Worker

London Borough of Bexley
£24,890 - £27,455 per annum + benefits
Would you like to be part of an enthusiastic successful team to ensure high quality Early Years and childcare for the Borough? Bexley (City/Town), London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Bexley

Local Government News

Latest issue - Local Goverrnemnt News

The March issue of Local Government News explores alternative funding channels that are available to councils beyond the Public Works Loan Board, what hurdles merging councils face in coming together, and how local government is handling GDPR.

This issue also has a special highways and street lighting section exploring how councils can use lighting to embark on their smart city journey and using IoT technology to weather the storm.

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