We need to modernise and strengthen the electoral machinery


There should be no doubt that an election is around the corner. When that does come, would electoral officials be ready? Professor Toby James explores.

'Cracks' starting to show in electoral system


Election administrators have warned of ‘cracks’ beginning to show in the electoral system with the prospect of another poll on the horizon.

High Court overturns Highworth election result


Swindon Borough Council has welcomed a High Court decision to overturn an election which saw the wrong candidate elected as a councillor.

Campaigners warn of ‘democracy deserts’


There were 17 councils where the party getting the most votes in May’s local elections did not get the most councillors, electoral reform campaigners say.

Campaigners call for reform of ‘broken’ electoral system


Electoral reform campaigners have warned of a ‘crisis of legitimacy’ in local elections as research reveals the first-past-the-post system leads to widespread disproportionality.

Voter ID trials saw more than 700 'denied a vote' in local elections


New figures show that 740 people were denied a vote in the latest local elections due to the government's voter ID trials.

Alliance calls for voting reforms to fix 'failing' system


Political parties and civil society groups have signed the Good Systems Agreement calling for reforms to the UK's voting system.

Labour beats Brexit Party in Peterborough by-election


Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn welcomed a 'great win' in the Peterborough by-election after scraping home in the face of a strong challenge by the Brexit Party.

Study sets out how best to empower electoral officials


Organisations running elections do better when they tackle stress among their employees, according to academics.

EU citizens ‘denied’ vote in European elections


European Union citizens living in the UK have complained of having their right to vote for an MEP ‘denied’.

To what extent is the environment shaping national politics?


Erica Popplewell explores what the local election results can tell us about concerns for the countryside and environment.

Lack of elections in Northamptonshire: An attack on local democracy?


With a suggestion that local government reorganisation in Northamptonshire may not take place now until 2021, why were there no local elections in the county last week? Mark Whitehead investigates.

Court rules voting provision for blind people is 'unlawful'


The way in which blind or partially sighted people are able to vote has been declared ‘unlawful’ in a successful legal challenge.

Whitehall announces measures to safeguard elections against ‘intimidation’


The Government today announced a range of new measures designed to help safeguard elections in the UK against ‘intimidation, influence and disinformation’.

Conservatives struggle at the polls as Lib Dems gain


The two main political parties have made big loses in the local elections, with the Liberal Democrats and independents looking like the real winners of the night.

Voter ID plans will impact ‘millions on the margins’ coalition argues


Millions of people will be denied their right to vote if the Government presses ahead with its mandatory voter ID plans, according to a call by charities and campaign groups.

Council confirms disgraced MP’s removal


A by-election is to be held in Peterborough after a recall petition to remove Fiona Onasanya MP secured nearly 20,000 signatures.

Council elections: Warning over lack of progress on female representation


Only 34% of all candidates running in today’s local elections are women, new research has revealed today.

Security fears after candidate addresses published


Security concerns have been raised after a loophole forced councils to publish the home addresses of candidates standing in the EU elections.

Over 500,000 apply to register to vote ahead of local elections


Over half a million people have applied to register to vote in the upcoming local elections, according to the Electoral Commission.

Voter ID plans slammed as 'undemocratic'


Mandatory voter ID requirements will seriously damage democracy, the Electoral Reform Society has warned again ahead of the local elections this week.

Purdah and local government


What is purdahh and how can those in local government avoid breaking the rules? Mark Whitehead explains.

Campaigners warn of ‘democracy deserts’ in council elections


More than 800,000 voters are being denied a real choice in the May local elections, according to new analysis by the Electoral Reform Society.

Council elections: A testing time for party alignments


Like it or not, the council elections will be dominated by an issue that has nothing to do with local government, says Mark Whitehead.

Concern over councils' ability to cope with polls


Council chiefs have raised concerns with Government about the sector’s capacity to run EU elections so close on the heels of local polls.

Brexit deadlock reveals need for ‘fairer’ voting system, campaigners say


Electoral reform campaigners are urging politicians to re-start the conversation about proportional representation ahead of the local elections.

Labour considers automatic voter registration


The Labour Party is considering adopting automatic voter registration as new policy ahead of the upcoming local elections.

Virtual reality used to help people with learning disabilities vote


The Northern Ireland branch of Mencap is using virtual reality to support people with learning disabilities to vote in the upcoming local elections.

Whitehall announces preparations for EU elections


The Government has written to the Electoral Commission confirming that it will help local authorities prepare for possible European elections in May.

Figures show no evidence of 'large-scale electoral fraud'


Campaigners have warned the case for voter ID is getting ‘weaker by the day’ after new figures show there were only eight allegations of personation fraud last year.

NILGA: Give councils the power to change Northern Ireland


The Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA) has called for the role of councils to be formally reviewed and strengthened after the elections in May, giving greater decision making powers to local people and places.

Tower Hamlets first council to trial photographic entry system in by-elections


Tower Hamlets Council will be the first in the country to use an automated photographic entry system in two of its by-election counts today.

Rural councils should get the chance to influence voter ID rollout


Voter ID pilots due to take place across 11 councils this year will help provide an insight into the best way to ensure the integrity of the voting process in the future, says Paul Shevlin.

More councils chosen to pilot voter ID scheme


The 11 local authorities taking part in the 2019 voter ID pilots in England have been announced by the Government.

Wales set to extend franchise to 16 and 17 year olds


Welsh Assembly looks set to extend the franchise to 16 and 17 year olds in what campaigners are calling ‘a vital step towards a fairer franchise’ for Wales.

Council hits back at 'insulting' one party state claims


Manchester City Council has hit back at a claim by the Liberal Democrats that it is a 'one party state' like North Korea.

Lib Dems attack 'supermajority problem' councils


The Liberal Democrats have launched an attack on 'supermajority problem councils like Manchester' at their annual conference in Brighton.

Voter ID scheme could cost up to £20m per general election, research finds


The national rollout of the government’s voter ID plans could cost up to £20m per general election, new analysis has revealed today.

Not enough evidence to prosecute in Tower Hamlets fraud case, Met says


An investigation into allegations of fraud in Tower Hamlets has concluded that there is not enough evidence to prosecute those involved, although evidence of a ‘serious criminal offence’ has been uncovered.

In defence of voter ID


The subject of voter ID has divided many people, but Bob Neill calls for those sceptical about reform to catch up with the rest of the modern world.

Postal voting pilots ‘well-run’, electoral commission says


Pilot schemes for postal and proxy voters carried out during last May’s local elections were ‘well-run’, an electoral body has concluded.

People who abuse election candidates could be banned from public office


People who abuse and intimidate those standing for election could be stripped of their right to hold public office under new government proposals.

Voter ID in perspective


Jo Miller, in her role as a returning officer, argues that Voter ID is a very expensive way to tackle a problem that is not a top priority in the UK.

Mandatory ID ‘disenfranchises’ voters, electoral watchdog says


Electoral watchdogs have rejected a claim that a recent trial requiring voters to show ID was 'a great success'.

Voter turnout 'unaffected' by ID scheme says pilot council


A trial scheme requiring voters to show ID in the recent local elections has been declared a 'great success' by one of the councils taking part.

The voice of a new generation


Samar Khalil looks at the debate that has divided many, votes at 16, and outlines why this will be a positive move for the future.

Voters turned away from polling booths due to ID scheme


Would-be voters were turned away from polling booths for the first time in trials of controversial ID schemes designed to tackle electoral fraud.

Election results: voters ‘unconvinced’ by major parties


The two main parties were stuck in indecisive lock-step following the first England-wide test of public opinion since last year's general election.

Figure used to justify voter ID trials branded as 'misleading'


A key piece of evidence used to justify controversial ID schemes in elections has been rejected as misleading by the UK's official statistical service, according to electoral campaigners.

Leader of Labour group at Gloucestershire blasts voter ID trial


The leader of the Labour group at Gloucestershire County Council has branded the voter ID a ‘calculated effort to disenfranchise millions’.

Local authority elections - publicity and decision making


Tiffany Cloynes outlines some of the legal and practical issues relating to publicity and decision making that may affect local authorities at a time of elections.

Whitehall defends voter ID reform against accusations of ‘discrimination’


The Government has defended its plans to require voters to produce ID when voting after watchdog warned reform may discriminate against ethnic minorities.

Polling industry must get ‘house in order’, Lords say


A Lords select committee today called for ‘tighter oversight’ of opinion polling and digital media in the run up to elections due to the threat they pose to the electoral process.

Political parties must report ‘gender gap’, campaigners say


Campaigners are calling on the Government to enact legislation to force political parties to report their 'gender gap' when it comes to election candidates.

Leader denies decision to step down related to local plan defeat


The leader of South Oxfordshire District Council has denied his decision to step down before the local elections is related to the authority’s local plan.

Got 5 to register before May's local elections?


Emma Hartley explains what resources are available to help boost voter turnout in the upcoming local elections.

Law allowing survivors of domestic abuse to vote anonymously passes


Changes in voter registration allowing survivors of domestic abuse to vote anonymously successfully passed through Parliament yesterday.

Charities warn voter ID plans could ‘damage turnout’


A coalition of charities and academics has warned the Government that plans to enforce voter ID at the upcoming local elections could ‘damage turnout and undermine engagement’.

Voter ID trials are ‘unnecessary and over-bearing’ say campaigners


The Government has been urged to reconsider its ID voting trials by campaigners due to the ‘tiny’ amount of electoral fraud.

UKIP loses control of its only local authority


UKIP lost control of Thanet District Council yesterday after a Conservative was voted in as leader.

Voter ID: cure for fraud or unreliable encumbrance?


Will the voter ID scheme help prevent fraud in the local elections? Mark Whitehead investigates.

Piloting voter ID - what it means for local government


A new pilot scheme will require voters to produce an ID to take part in the upcoming local elections. Mark Whitehead explains what the scheme is all about.

Tories set for election defeat in three flagship London boroughs poll predicts


The Conservatives are set to lose at least three key London boroughs in the upcoming local elections, a new poll has suggested.

Requirement to publish home addresses in local elections to be dropped


Candidates standing as councillors in local elections will soon not have to publish their home addresses on ballot papers, says the prime minister.

Welsh government proposes lowering voting age for council elections


The Welsh government has laid out proposals for extending the right to vote in council elections to 16 and 17 year olds in a bid to give more people a say in local democracy.

The top 10 things local government can expect in 2018


Tiffany Cloynes outlines her predictions for the top 10 issues for local government in 2018.

500 shared sites needed to end ‘age apartheid’, think tank says


A think tank has called for the creation of hundreds of shared sites designed to bring young and old people together and end Britain’s ‘age apartheid’.

Electoral reforms required to avert future crises, commission says


‘Urgent action’ is needed to minimise the risks to the delivery of well-run elections in the future, an independent commission says.

Commissioners highlight problems for voters with disabilities


Some people were unable to vote in the last general election because of their disabilities, according to the Electoral Commission.

Eight out of ten people think elections are well run


Eight out of ten people believe elections are well run and free from fraud, according to research by the Electoral Commission.

Voter ID pilot launched in local elections


Voters in five local authorities will have to prove who they are before they can cast their vote in council elections next May, the Government has announced.

Electoral system 'will fail' without urgent action, report warns


The Government must rethink the electoral system to address the ‘many weaknesses and contradictions’ within it, a new report has argued today.

New plans will make it easier for domestic abuse victims to vote


The Government has confirmed it will implement plans to make it easier for domestic abuse survivors to register to vote anonymously.

Analysis shows 22 million votes were 'wasted' in General Election


More than 20 million votes had no impact on the result of the 2017 General Election, according to new analysis by the Electoral Reform Society.

New reforms to help sight impaired people to vote


Local authorities will now be allowed to use records to help ensure people with a vision impairment receive accessible voting information.

Major shake-up of Welsh council elections unveiled


Councils could be allowed to introduce proportional representation for local elections under new proposals unveiled by the Welsh Government.

Election registration system ‘needs modernising’, commission says


Modernisation of the registration system for elections is ‘urgently needed’ to ease the burden on councils, commission says.

Details of £1bn DUP-Conservative deal published


N. Ireland is set to receive new devolved powers as part of the £1bn deal between the minority Conservative government and the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).

Council orders probe into voting problems


An investigation has been commissioned by Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council after problems were raised with people voting in the General Election.

Hung parliament will ‘exacerbate uncertainties’ for local gov, warn experts


The failure for any political party to secure a majority could cause a period of uncertainty and a lack of direction for councils, sector experts have warned.

Council apologises for over 1000 unissued postal votes


Plymouth Council has apologised after a computer problem led to over 1,500 people not receiving their postal votes.

A quarter of seats haven't changed hands since WWII finds research


One in four seats have been held by the same party since the Second World War, according to new analysis by the Electoral Reform Society (ERS).

Council pays out £2000 after blind woman unable to vote


A woman has won a legal challenge against her district council over voting access for the blind and partially sighted.

Police to guard all polling stations in Tower Hamlets to tackle voter intimidation


Police will be present at every polling station in Tower hamlets in a bid to tackle electoral fraud and voter intimidation.

Council replaces missing postal vote packs


Plymouth council has been forced to issue hundreds of replacement postal vote packs after complaints that some have not been received.

Dramatic increase in tactical voting reveals flaws in ‘lottery’ electoral system


One in five voters are planning to vote ‘tactically’ in the General Election, campaigners find.

Parties ‘failing’ to spell out consequences of election promises


The two main political parties are failing to spell out the consequences of their general election proposals, financial experts have warned.

Lib Dems and Independents regain Cornwall Council


The Liberal Democrats and independent councillors have taken control of Cornwall Council after weeks of uncertainty.

Youth vote important only in ‘handful of constituencies’


The youth vote only matters in a ‘handful of constituencies’, older people’s charity claims.

Voter ID plans are 'overbearing and counterproductive’ warn experts


Election experts have slammed a Conservative manifesto proposal to make voters show personal identification as ‘overbearing and counterproductive’.

Council issue 11,500 poll cards with wrong constituency


A council has apologised after sending out thousands of poll cards with the wrong constituency on.

Electoral reform activists warn of ‘registration time bomb’


Campaigners warn of ‘registration time bomb’ as research shows proportion of school leavers on the electoral roll dropped by a quarter between 2013 and 2016.

Emergency polling station set up in backseat of car


Election staff in Moray were forced to improvise this morning after being locked out of their polling place.

Metro mayors ‘potentially worrying’ products of secret deals


The new regional mayors are the products of deals done ‘behind closed doors’ and are therefore ‘worrying’, warns academic.

Fears as new era of metro mayors dawns


Local government big hitters have voiced concerns about the accountability, effectiveness and necessity of the incoming combined authority mayors.

Nearly two thirds of young people ‘probably’ won’t vote, survey reveals


Only one in seven young people say they will definitely vote in the General Election, survey reveals.

Don't forget local polls in ‘fog’ of general election, campaigners say


Council representatives and campaigners are urging political parties to use next week to raise awareness of local issues ahead of the upcoming local elections.

Manchester Gorton by-election moved to 8 June


Permission has been granted to delay the by-election for Manchester Gorton so it can take place on the same day as the General Election.

Too many elections? What the General Election means for local polls


William Eichler speaks to Dr Jonathan Carr-West to find out how councils are preparing themselves to deliver two elections in five weeks.

Theresa May announces early General Election to ‘unify Westminster’


The prime minister has announced an early General Election in order to ‘unify Westminster’ ahead of Brexit negotiations.

Slavery in supply chains image

Slavery in supply chains

Tiffany Cloynes and Clare Hardy explore what responsibility councils may have in the future to eliminate slavery and human trafficking in their supply chains.
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Local Government News

Latest issue - Local Goverrnemnt News

This issue of Local Government News explores how councils can tackle modern slavery and trafficking in their supply chains, finds out more about Cambridge's first cohousing scheme and the launch of a new project to build a shared service pattern library for local government.

This issue also contains a special focus on children's services and how councils are protecting children following local safeguarding children boards being abolished.

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