Devolution

Gove says new body will 'shine light' on sector failures and successes

28/06/2022

Michael Gove has reaffirmed his plans to ‘shine a light’ on both the failures and successes of councils with a new Office for Local Government.

Unleash wave of mayoral devo, says think tank

20/06/2022

A report from the centre right Onward think tank has urged the Government to step back from ‘micromanaging’ England’s cities and counties and unleash a wave of mayoral devolution.

EXCLUSIVE: Government 'risks battle' on moving districts' functions without consent

17/05/2022

Districts will push to change the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill to ensure their functions cannot move to new combined county authorities (CCAs) without their consent, The MJ understands.

Devolve powers to tackle jobs crisis, council chiefs say

17/05/2022

Local authority leaders have called on the Government to devolve more powers to councils to free them up to tackle the growing job crisis at the local level.

Council devolution: how technology can enable a successful and seamless transition

05/05/2022

Scott Goodwin explains how technology holds the key to unlocking a successful and seamless transition to a unitary model.

Manufacturers call for more local control of levelling up funds

19/04/2022

Nearly a quarter of manufacturers say that regional mayors and local councillors should be given more responsibility for driving the levelling up agenda.

South East needs 'unified' approach to create a devolution framework

22/03/2022

Government must rethink the assumption that directing investment away from an ‘overheated’ South East will ‘cool’ the region and ‘heat’ the rest of the country, a report has warned today.

Talks held on East Midlands combined authority

17/03/2022

Proposals for an East Midlands combined authority covering Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire could be put forward to the Government as part of county deal negotiations.

Councils need more ‘funding and powers’ to tackle climate change

10/03/2022

Progress needs to be accelerated in every local area if the UK’s climate and nature targets are to be met, climate campaigners say.

Councillors complain of lack of powers

07/03/2022

More than two out of three (68%) councillors in England feel they lack sufficient powers to represent the needs of their communities, a survey today by the Electoral Reform Society campaign group has found.

Devolution for all: Gove unveils long-awaited White Paper

02/02/2022

By 2030, every part of England that wants one will have a devolution deal, the Government’s long-awaited Levelling Up White Paper has revealed.

Lancashire County Council endorses plan to secure devolution deal

25/01/2022

Lancashire's county councillors have endorsed plans which aim to deliver a devolution deal to the county.

There's a whiff of purpose once more on devolution

21/01/2022

Devolution should rock the status quo and create a new culture of governance which pushes everyone who currently holds decision-making power out of their comfort zones, says deputy chief executive of New Local Jessica Studdert.

Northern leaders champion role of culture in levelling up

20/01/2022

Leaders from across the North have called for more investment and more devolution to help promote culture in the north of England.

Lancashire council chiefs to cooperate on County Deal

13/01/2022

Local authority leaders across Greater Lancashire have agreed to work together to deliver a new deal across a range of areas including the economy.

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’.

Top 100: Our most popular local government stories of 2021

06/12/2021

From the ongoing dispute over council pay, to how local government is adjusting in the wake of the pandemic, here are the most popular 100 stories on LocalGov from 2021.

Council chiefs call for devolution of skills powers

30/11/2021

Local authority leaders are urging MPs to support measures that would see councils have more say in the delivery of skills development at the local level.

Northern Irish councils in devolution call

24/11/2021

The sector is pressing for increased powers to help the country to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

What does local government hope to get from the Spending Review?

25/10/2021

From a a multi-year funding settlement to fixing the social care crisis, William Eichler explores what local government is hoping to hear on Wednesday.

County areas are 'poor relation' in internet speeds, MPs warn

21/10/2021

County ares could become the 'poor relation' to cities in the Government's gigabit rollout, MPs have warned today.

County leaders urge ministers not to get 'bogged down' on mandatory mayors

13/10/2021

County councils have urged the Government not to insist on introducing more mayors after a poll revealed that only one in three people believe they should spearhead devolution deals.

Tory MPs make case for 'double devolution'

04/10/2021

New agreements that ensure power is shared between councils and local communities would help really level up the country, a new report has argued today.

Devolution should be the default option, say MPs

01/10/2021

The Government should consider devolving greater powers in housing, health, planning and education, a new report has argued today.

County areas chase devo dream

17/08/2021

County areas are lining up to strike one of the first tranche of devolution deals.

Northern mayors wielding more power than devo deals suggest

16/08/2021

A hundred days after the May 2021 elections Northern mayors are wielding more power – particularly ‘soft’ power - than their devolution deals suggest, says new analysis.

Empowering county councils ‘game-changer’ for levelling-up

22/07/2021

County leaders have written to the Prime Minister welcoming his commitment to empower county authorities and urging him to follow through on what they describe as a ‘game-changer’ for levelling-up.

Commission calls for funding re-set for local government

20/07/2021

Local government needs a ‘funding floor’, set at an agreed percentage of national income, a report on the future of the sector has said.

Government criticised for ‘lack of clarity’ over net zero strategy

16/07/2021

Auditors have criticised the Government for not providing local authorities with clarity about their roles in achieving net zero by 2050.

Johnson: Bring your devolution plans to me

15/07/2021

Prime Minister Boris Johnson called for local leaders to take their devolution plans to him in a keynote speech from the West Midlands this morning.

Leaders call for new powers to tackle climate change

13/07/2021

A cross-party group of 32 mayors and local leaders have called for greater powers and resources to deliver net zero.

Reed accuses government of dropping devolution

07/07/2021

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

LGiU report calls for a local government-led Building Back Better commission

16/06/2021

A local government-led Building Back Better commission should be part of a new place settlement after the pandemic, a new report from the LGiU think-tank has urged.

Levelling up is 'meaningless' without devo, say Lords

20/05/2021

The Government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda is meaningless without more devolution to councils and investment in local public services says a report from the House of Lords.

Queen's Speech: Levelling up takes centre stage

11/05/2021

The Government’s levelling up agenda was at the forefront of today’s Queen’s Speech, but the role councils will play remains uncertain.

Queen's Speech: No social care solution in sight

11/05/2021

The Queen’s Speech has said proposals on social care reform will be brought forward – but it fell short of a commitment to legislation in this Parliament.

Queen's speech: PM's 'live local and prosper' promise

09/05/2021

Levelling up, boosting the economy and backing the NHS are set to be the priorities for Tuesday’s Queen’s speech.

Devolution must focus on economy, says think-tank

06/05/2021

Devolution needs to focus on rebuilding the economy rather than local government reorganisation, a think-tank has claimed.

Discrimination twice as high among ethnic minorities in local services

12/04/2021

People from ethnic minority backgrounds are twice as likely to face discrimination when using local services, new research has suggested.

Public back more city devolution

09/04/2021

More than eight in ten people support more devolution to England’s largest cities, a new poll has revealed.

Tear down devolution 'barriers,' APPG urges

09/03/2021

Powers should be devolved to councils before reorganisation takes place, a new report has concluded.

West Yorkshire’s devolution deal signed into law

01/02/2021

The £38m ‘historic’ devolution deal for West Yorkshire has been signed into law.

Labour announces ‘constitutional commission’ on devolution

21/12/2020

Leader Sir Keir Starmer said it will look at transferring more powers from Westminster to local leaders.

Top 100: Our most popular local government stories of 2020

16/12/2020

Although the dispute over council pay caused the most stir in the local government sector this year, the impact of dealing with the pandemic obviously dominated the headlines as well.

Community-led skills devo should be the way forward

03/12/2020

A more comprehensive and community-led approach to devolution would enable skills strategies and local services to be joined up more effectively, says Charlotte Morgan.

Sunak to re-write Green Book to level up the North

23/11/2020

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is expected to announce plans to re-write the Green Book in the spending review this week, as part of the Government’s commitment to levelling up.

Ministers urged to 'double down on devolution'

17/11/2020

A new study has called for the creation of 'pop up parishes' and 'people's budgets' to give communities greater control over local services and assets.

Combined authority expansion halted by ‘party politics’

09/11/2020

The expansion of the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) has stalled after leaders failed to reach an agreement.

Councils call for devolution of National Citizen Service funding

06/11/2020

Only one in six eligible young people are taking part in the National Citizen Service (NCS), leading to calls for the Government to devolve its funding to local youth services instead.

Khan calls for further devolution of adult education funding

28/10/2020

The mayor of London has urged the Government to devolve adult education funding to the capital or risk undermining its long-term recovery from the pandemic.

Making a holistic case for devolution

28/10/2020

Penny Rinta-Suksi argues the Government needs to make a holistic case for devolution, and back it with legislation.

Report calls for fundamental reform to local government funding

15/10/2020

The handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the ‘dysfunctional relationship’ between central and local government, a report has argued today.

'Hand power down to level up' report argues

09/10/2020

Power must be decentralised and rebalanced around the needs of local places if the Government’s aim if levelling up is to be met, a report has argued today.

MPs to examine how Whitehall can ensure effective devolution

08/10/2020

A new inquiry examining how to improve the effectiveness of devolution in England has been launched by MPs.

Councils calls for COBRA-style action to tackle youth unemployment

06/10/2020

Council leaders have called for a COBRA-style response to tackle youth unemployment and save a ‘lost generation’ of young people.

‘Lack of direction’ putting levelling up agenda at risk, warns report

28/09/2020

A lack of strategy from the Government is the greatest barrier to levelling up the country, a new report has warned today.

Tackle health and economic inequalities at local level, economists say

21/09/2020

A group of leading economists says that the Government’s ‘leveling up’ agenda should focus more on devolution and health and economic inequalities, and not just on big infrastructure projects.

All West Yorkshire councils back devolution deal

11/09/2020

All five West Yorkshire councils and the Combined Authority have given their consent to a devolution deal for the region.

Government should provide £500m arts resilience fund, says study

08/09/2020

The Government should devolve power over arts funding to councils and make a resilience fund available to support art and culture in local areas, report says.

LEPs need capacity boost to improve delivery, research finds

07/09/2020

Local enterprise partnerships (LEP) would be better at delivering large-scale capital projects if they had more capacity, independent research for the Government has found.

Scottish councils release blueprint for change

07/09/2020

A local government blueprint laying out the changes required to unlock councils’ full potential has been published by the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) today.

DCN: Bigger local government is ‘not better or cheaper’

01/09/2020

Proposals for county unitary councils would be 122 times larger than the average council in Germany, a new report by the District Councils’ Network (DCN) warns today.

Three districts table Gloucestershire devolution proposals

27/08/2020

Three of Gloucestershire’s district councils have proposed creating two unitary authorities in the county.

Call to scrap two-tier local government system in rural areas

04/08/2020

The ‘confusing' two-tier model of local government should be abolished and replaced with single unitary councils, a report has argued today.

Over half of workforce in county areas 'at risk' due to pandemic

04/08/2020

Over half the workforce in England's county areas work in sectors ‘at risk’ due to the coronavirus crisis, research has warned today.

Councillors in south east reject metro mayors, says poll

28/07/2020

Seven out of ten councillors in the South East of England are against plans for metro mayors, a poll has revealed.

Reorganisation will deter potential councillors, report warns

24/07/2020

Local government unitary reorganisation will slash the number of councillors and deter many from standing for election, a report for the District Councils’ Network (DCN) has warned.

Calls to devolve £5.2bn flood defences funding

14/07/2020

Councils have called for funding for flood defences to be devolved to local areas, after the Government announced its new long-term plan to tackle flooding in England.

Sheffield devolution deal set to be passed by Parliament

29/06/2020

A new devolution deal for South Yorkshire will be laid before Parliament today, handing new powers and millions of pounds of funding to the region.

Hand health powers to elected mayors, says report

23/06/2020

Health powers should be handed to elected mayors as part of a ‘rejuvenated and fortified wave of devolution,’ a think-tank report has suggested.

Javid urges reorganisation and devolution post-COVID

23/06/2020

Council tax reform and local government reorganisation should both play a part in the post COVID economic recovery, former communities secretary Sajid Javid has said.

Council chiefs call for devolution of skills investment

17/06/2020

Local authority leaders have said they will work with the Government to develop post-Covid economic recovery plans as figures reveal a fall in employment.

A tipping point for town centres?

16/04/2020

Nigel Wilcock warns that many town centre businesses are now probably terminally damaged – and genuine change will be essential.

NIC launches future of rail consultation

26/03/2020

The National Infrastructure Commission has launched a consultation on the future rail landscape of the North and the Midlands as part of the Government’s ‘levelling up’ agenda.

West Yorkshire devolution deal moves to next stage

25/03/2020

The West Yorkshire devolution deal has taken a step forward after receiving backing from Bradford Council and Kirklees Council.

Leaving nothing to chance

12/03/2020

The ‘levelling-up’ Budget is era-defining and ambitious in scope – but we will have to wait until the summer Spending Review to understand the blueprint, says Localis’s Jonathan Werran.

Budget 2020: Sunak reveals spending spree for first budget

11/03/2020

New chancellor Rishi Sunak has unveiled a Budget to end austerity, boost productivity and tackle the problems created by coronavirus.  

Budget 2020: New West Yorkshire mayor announced

11/03/2020

A new directly-elected West Yorkshire mayor has been announced with the Government signing a new devolution deal amid plans to ‘level up’ the UK economy.

Reorganisation fears overshadow devolution talks

10/03/2020

Concerns over local government reorganisation are marring devolution talks in the north-west.

Former 'red wall' support devolution to tackle climate change

10/03/2020

Three-quarters of former ‘red wall’ seats believe councils need extra funding and powers to deal with the climate emergency, a new survey has revealed.

MPs to examine current approach to devolution

09/03/2020

An inquiry looking into progress on devolution in England has been launched by the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee.

Jenrick voices support for East Midlands Combined Authority plans

02/03/2020

District and borough councils in Leicestershire have announced they will be taking forward discussions about creating an East Midlands Combined Authority.

Government urged to 'think big' to tackle regional inequalities

02/03/2020

A comprehensive review of economic decline and social division has called for a ‘large-scale, comprehensive, long-term and devolved’ plan of action to deliver change.

Next London mayor must ‘forge’ new template for devolution

24/02/2020

London boroughs have called on the next mayor to ‘reset’ the relationship between central Government and Britain’s cities and counties.

Think tank calls for ‘Devolution Parliament’

21/02/2020

A think tank has called for a ‘Devolution Parliament’ as it releases research showing that England has the worst regional inequalities in the developed world.

Mayor calls for English Barnett Formula

21/02/2020

The Government should create an English version of the Barnett Formula to deliver fair funding outside of London, the mayor of Greater Manchester has said.

Urban councils call for fiscal devolution to end ‘Whitehall hand-outs’

10/02/2020

Urban authorities have joined forces to urge the Government to devolve power to cities in order to support them in ‘levelling up’ growth across the country.

Borough seeking unitary status sparks spending row

03/02/2020

A row over council spending has broken out between a county council and a borough authority that is seeking unitary status.

Commission puts health devolution back on political agenda

03/02/2020

A new Commission calling for the devolution of health and social care services has been launched today.

The price to pay

29/01/2020

If the Johnson Government values the institutions of mayoral governance as agents of levelling up, they will have to creatively fund and resource them, writes Localis chief executive Jonathan Werran.

Ministers in Leeds to thrash out devo deal

28/01/2020

The West Yorkshire Combined Authority is meeting with ministers today to start thrashing out a devolution deal for the Leeds City Region.

Boroughs in GP estate devolution call

24/01/2020

London Councils has called for more devolution to boroughs of decisions on the GP estate.

Boost for Yorkshire leaders committee talks

15/01/2020

Local government secretary Robert Jenrick has agreed to talks on the role and functions of a new committee of leaders from across Yorkshire.

NI council chiefs call for investment to ‘unlock potential of local government'

13/01/2020

Local authority leaders in Northern Ireland have welcomed the draft deal which is set to restore the executive at Stormont and have called for more devolution to the local level.

Charity calls for devolution to end ‘nightmare rail journeys’

02/01/2020

A charity has called for a radical overhaul of the UK’s rail services including giving city authorities more control over the management of regional networks.

Rough sleeping in Greater Manchester down by nearly 40%

18/12/2019

Mayor of Greater Manchester urges the Government to do more to help the homeless as figures reveal rough sleeping has fallen by 37% in one year.

In a nutshell: What the election result means for local government

13/12/2019

With the Conservative party securing its biggest majority since the 1980s, what does this mean for local government?

Devolution revolution expected after Johnson wins

13/12/2019

Local government was this morning expecting a devolution revolution after Prime Minister Boris Johnson secured a sweeping election win.

It’s party time

05/12/2019

Paul Marinko tries to help the sector navigate the web of policy commitments for local government on offer after 12 December.

Labour pledges to restore council spending to 2010 levels

21/11/2019

Council spending powers will be restored to 2010 levels over the next five years, if Labour wins the General Election.

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