Intervention | LocalGov

Fresh Best Value Notice for South Cambs over four-day week


The Government has issued a new Best Value Notice to South Cambridgeshire DC due to ‘ongoing concerns’ about the authority’s four-day working week.

'Blunt tool' ranks council finances


Rushcliffe BC is the highest-ranked council in England for finance with Leeds City Council coming bottom, according to metrics.

Wirral assurance panel ‘no longer required’


Wirral MBC’s Independent Assurance Panel (IAP) has officially stood down after declaring it was ‘no longer required’.

Two-year Sandwell intervention to end


Local government minister Simon Hoare has today confirmed that Whitehall’s two-year intervention at Sandwell Council will end.

Bradford issued Best Value Notice


The Government has issued a Best Value Notice to City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council over concerns about its financial resilience and children’s services.

Tower Hamlets faces Best Value inspection


A Best Value inspection is to take place at Tower Hamlets LBC, the Government has announced.

Birmingham 'worse' than commissioners feared


The situation in Birmingham City Council is worse than commissioners expected, a report to the secretary of state has claimed.

LGA moves towards performance support role


The Local Government Association (LGA) is to take a more proactive role as it seeks to do more to prevent Whitehall intervention in councils, The MJ understands.

Statutory recommendations lifted at Sandwell


Auditors have lifted the three statutory recommendations in place at Sandwell MBC.

Woking to sell development to county


A major deal between Woking BC, Surrey CC and McLaren is set to help ease the financial pressure on the troubled borough and pave the way to selling its HQ.

Notts council seeks ‘exceptional financial support’


Nottingham City Council has joined the list of local authorities who have requested ‘exceptional financial support’ from the Government.

Nottingham commissioners would 'undermine senior officers'


Nottingham City Council has urged the Government not to send in commissioners to oversee the running of the authority.

Councils told to revise local plan timetables


The housing secretary has instructed seven local authorities to revise their timetables for delivering their local plans.

Government set to appoint commissioners at Nottingham


The levelling up secretary is ‘minded to’ escalate government intervention at Nottingham due to ‘serious concerns’ over the city council’s finances and governance.

Fourth commissioner appointed at Woking


The Government has appointed Richard Carr as a managing director commissioner at Woking BC.

Liverpool to regain certain functions but intervention expected to continue


Liverpool City Council is set to regain control over some of its functions, but commissioners are likely to continue to intervene in specific areas.

Brum blame culture still 'largely unaddressed'


Birmingham City Council’s problems of governance and accountability are still ‘largely unaddressed’, despite some gains made by the authority.

Council told to stick with ‘unsuitable’ local plan


The Government has told Erewash Borough Council to stick with its emerging local plan, which has been branded ‘out-of-date and unsuitable’ by the authority.

MPs launch inquiry into controversial watchdog


An inquiry looking at the remit of the controversial Office for Local Government (Oflog) was launched by MPs today.

Job cuts 'inevitable' at Brum


Birmingham City Council is poised to reveal a worse-than-expected financial position as it embarks on a savings drive and ‘inevitable’ job cuts, The MJ has learned.

Spectre of s114 looms over Nottingham


Nottingham City Council has edged closer to issuing a section 114 notice, after revealing it still faces a significant in-year deficit despite tightening its purse strings.

South Cambs issued Best Value notice over four-day week


The Government has issued a non-statutory Best Value notice to South Cambridgeshire District Council ‘following concerns about its trial of a four-day working week’.

Peterborough leader loses confidence vote


Peterborough City Council has new political leadership after councillors voted to remove Conservative leader Wayne Fitzgerald.

Confidence vote risks ‘further government intervention’


The leader of Peterborough City Council has said a confidence motion in him will result in ‘major political instability’ and risks further intervention from the Government.

Sandwell council should be abolished, MP says


Shaun Bailey MP has called for Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council to be dismantled.

Birmingham 'actively exploring' action against s151


Birmingham CC is ‘actively exploring’ action against its former director of council management Becky Hellard for her role in the collapse of the council.

Guildford leader survives confidence vote


Guildford BC’s leader has survived a vote of no confidence over the authority’s finances.

Threat to councils' planning powers lifted


Nine councils have avoided being stripped of their planning decision-making powers after drastically improving their performance figures.

Birmingham commissioners revealed


The team tasked with turning round Birmingham City Council has been announced – including a former Labour minister and a serving council chief.

Woking entered s114 territory in 2018


Woking BC may have faced a section 114 notice at least four years before it declared effective bankruptcy, senior councillors have been told.

Brum braced for Government intervention


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.

Best Value notice for Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole


Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council has been issued with a Best Value notice after a review found its budget was ‘unrealistic’.

Warning Birmingham equal pay bill could rise further


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

Government formally intervenes in Croydon


Ministers have moved Croydon LBC’s improvement and assurance panel to a statutory footing, meaning it can instruct rather than guide the council.

Intervening at the local level


After the launch of Oflog yesterday at the LGA conference, Nick Graham, Buckinghamshire Council, takes a step back to look at Government interventions.

Thurrock commissioners call for sector-wide change


The team from Essex CC led by Tony McArdle have made recommendations for the wider sector in its Best Value report on Thurrock, published today.

Woking issues Section 114


Stricken Woking BC has issued a Section 114 notice as the authority continues to work with Government on a solution its financial crisis.

Government steps in at Woking after huge debts revealed


Secretary of state Michael Gove has demanded an intervention in Working BC begin immediately after the scale of its financial problems emerged.

Dudley in health and safety breach


Dudley MBC has been found to have breached health and safety rules by the Regulator of Social Housing (RSH).

Scottish council leaders and police strengthen collaboration


Local authority leaders in Scotland have agreed four key priority areas to strengthen collaboration between local government and policing.

Kent receives improvement notice for SEND failings


An improvement notice has been issued to Kent CC after it failed to turn around its special educational needs and disability (SEND) services.

Questions over Slough's 'viability'


The Government has said there are question marks over the ‘viability’ of Slough Council as a unitary as it announced plans for it and Thurrock and Croydon.

No extra social care funding for struggling councils


A minister said councils would receive further support if they were found to be in need of improvement under new Care Quality Commission (CQC) assessments.

Commisioners praise progress at Liverpool


Troubled Liverpool City Council is making progress, its commissioners have ruled, but there are still risks.

'Progress falls short' at Nottingham


Nottingham City Council has been too slow in turning around its finances, according to the team charged with overseeing its recovery.

Gove announces further intervention at Liverpool City Council


The Government has appointment another commissioner to oversee Liverpool City Council following 'serious shortcomings' around financial management and senior leadership.

Auditor hands statutory recommendations to two councils


Two councils have been issued with rare statutory recommendations by their external auditor.

Improvement notice for Nottingham's children's services


An improvement notice has been handed to Nottingham City Council over its children’s services.

Thurrock to switch borrowing to PWLB


Thurrock BC will reduce its ‘over-reliance’ on borrowing from other councils by taking out £836m of loans from the Public Works Loan Board (PWLB).

Liverpool set for further intervention


Commissioners at Liverpool are set to take on governance and financial decision making in an extension of their powers following a damning report.

Slough's financial challenge 'unprecedented'


Commissioners at Slough Council are set to be given powers over recruitment after finding it was unable to turn around its finances quickly enough.

Structural change not a cure-all for children's services


Structural change alone is not enough to turn around children’s services, a new report has found.

Commissioners to oversee strategic decisions at Nottingham


Commissioners are to oversee strategic decisions at Nottingham City Council amid fears of ‘further serious issues’ on the scale that led to a section 114.

Government intervenes at Sandwell Council


The Government has intervened at Sandwell Council after a review found a 'deeply troubling picture of mismanagement'.

Merthyr Tydfil improvement board ends


Independent oversight of Merthyr Tydfil CBC has come to an end following improvements to its governance and sustainability.

Slough given conditions for £300m bailout


Slough Council will only be considered for a £307m Government bailout to cover its deficits if it proves it can turn itself around financially, the Department for Levelling up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has warned.

Commissioners sent in to struggling Slough


The Government has sent commissioners in to struggling Slough BC in a bid to turn round its failing finances.

Council chiefs urge Government to put children at ‘heart of recovery’


Local authority leaders have called for a cross-government strategy to ensure that children and young people are at the heart of the post-pandemic recovery.

Commissioners appointed at Liverpool City Council


Surrey CC’s chief executive Joanna Killian will be part of the team of independent commissioners who will oversee improvements at Liverpool City Council, local government secretary Robert Jenrick has announced today.

Councils should have legal duty to provide ‘early help’ says report


A new report is calling for a legal duty on local authorities to provide early help to children and families, rather than providing what is easiest to measure.

Good luck Liverpool


Intervention can be the best thing that happens to a council, ‘and can serve only to define the past not the future’, says Jo Miller. But the cause of the failure must be recognised and the right series of actions taken, she believes.

Jenrick steps in at 'dysfunctional' Liverpool


Commissioners will be sent in to Liverpool City Council after an independent inquiry found serious mismanagement and a dysfunctional culture, communities secretary Robert Jenrick has told Parliament.

Nottingham plans £100m asset sale


The council has identified £100m of assets for sale as part of a plan to bring its finances under control.

Charities call for 'vital' early intervention funding to safeguard children


Funding cuts to children's services have left councils unable to cope with the current crisis, charities have warned today.

Eight councils to receive £20,000 to develop ‘behavioural insights’


Eight local authorities are to receive £20,000 each in order to help them develop new ways to change the behaviour of residents as part of an effort to reduce demand on overstretched councils.

Leader of ‘fractious’ council seeks government help


The leader of Merthyr Tydfil Council has asked the Welsh Government for help to overcome its ‘fractious’ position and financial challenges.

'We've broken the social contract with people'


Former Society of Local Authority Chief Executives president Jo Miller is leaving her chief executive role at Doncaster MBC to take up a new local government post in New Zealand. She talks to Heather Jameson about her legacy.

The rise of anti-social behaviour: Can we stop it?


Rebecca Bryant suggests collaboration, communication and transparency are key to tackling the rise in anti-social behaviour.

Brum improvement team issues final damning judgement and walks away


Birmingham City Council’s intervention team has issued a final, damning report on the crisis-hit council and walked away – despite admitting its job is not complete.

Councils call for Troubled Families funding after success of scheme


Council leaders have called for continued funding for the Troubled Families programme after an evaluation found the scheme has helped hundreds of thousands of families.

Northants can use £70m in capital receipts to plug finance gap


Northamptonshire CC will be allowed to use £70m in capital receipts to plug its financial black hole, local government secretary James Brokenshire has ruled. 

Whitehall plans to tackle bad health need ‘long-term investment’, charity says


Health secretary Matt Hancock has said the Government is committed to supporting local councils in improving health locally through ‘innovation, communication and community outreach.’

Brokenshire to end intervention at Rotherham Council


Rotherham Council looks set to regain full control of its services, after communities secretary James Brokenshire said he was 'minded' to end intervention.

Commissioners call for end of intervention in Rotherham


Ministers have been urged to return full powers back to Rotherham Council, after an independent report found 'impressive' improvements across the authority.

Whitehall cuts ‘undermining’ support services for vulnerable children


Government funding reductions have forced councils to cut back on early support services for vulnerable children, an education policy think tank has found.

Whitehall launches £40m strategy to fight violent crime


The Government today launched a multi-million pound strategy to tackle the ‘root causes’ of violent crime, including a task force involving local authorities.

Javid plans intervention into crisis-hit Northants


Local government secretary Sajid Javid has bowed to the inevitable and outlined plans for commissioners to run Northamptonshire CC amid concerns over the county’s sustainability.

Three councils face intervention over local plans


Three councils are facing government intervention over their failure to produce a local plan.

County council imposes an emergency spending ban


Northamptonshire CC’s director of finance has issued a section 114 order, calling a halt to spending at the cash-strapped authority. 

Plymouth agrees to manage Torbay’s failing children’s services


Plymouth City Council has agreed to take on full managerial responsibility for the ‘inadequate’ children’s services in Torbay.

Rotherham's children's services rated 'good' in dramatic turnaround


Rotherham Council’s children’s services have been rated as ‘good’ by Ofsted, following three years of Government intervention in the aftermath of the child sexual exploitation scandal.

Five London councils commission programme to keep troubled youngsters out of care


Five London boroughs have jointly commissioned a new programme to help vulnerable young people stay out of care.

Councils can only afford to help children in crisis, charities warn


Councils have been forced to close services designed to spot early signs of child neglect and abuse as they can only afford to help those in crisis, a report has warned today.

Grenfell council asks government to step back


Kensington and Chelsea RLBC has asked the Government to water down its oversight at the council following the Grenfell Tower fire in June.

Councils call for 2% health precept to invest in prevention


District councils have called for introduction of a new health precept on council tax in order to raise £25m for preventative measures.

Rotherham set to be handed back five powers


A further five powers are due to be returned to Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council following improvements by the council.

Whitehall to intervene in council after Grenfell tragedy


The Government yesterday announced it will be intervening in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC) following the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Aiding an unprotected species


The pressures facing local authority statutory officers are now greater than ever. Simon Goacher argues that tinkering with protection rules in recent years has undermined these vital positions.

Power to award grants returned to Tower Hamlets


The communities secretary has confirmed the start of a ‘phased return’ of powers to Tower Hamlets, but commissioners caution there is still ‘much to do’.

District council makes ‘unusual’ call for Gov intervention into Northamptonshire CC


Daventry District Council is proposing to call on the Government to intervene in the management of Northamptonshire County Council to resolve its ‘major financial challenges’ - a move Daventry acknowledges is ‘unusual’ and ‘undesirable’.

Councils should encourage whistleblowing say MPs


Local authorities must learn from the imposition of commissioners in Tower Hamlets and Rotherham to ensure children are protected and whistleblowers taken seriously, select committee concludes.

Tower Hamlets fails to win back powers


Tower Hamlets is still 'some way off' at showing sufficient improvement in order to be handed back control of more functions, according to communities secretary Greg Clark.

Failing children’s services to be taken over warns Cameron


Control of failing children’s services will be taken away from councils under radical reforms announced today by the prime minister.

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