MHCLG

£31m Hong Kong integration fund launched

08/04/2021

Funding of £30.7m will be provided to councils to support new arrivals from Hong Kong.

Levelling up fund faces legal challenge

06/04/2021

The Government could face legal action over its ‘troublingly opaque’ allocation of the Levelling Up Fund.

Councils to be given five years to spend Right to Buy receipts

22/03/2021

Councils will be given five years to spend receipts from Right to Buy sales as part of an overhaul of the key housing policy, local government secretary Robert Jenrick has announced.

Public inquiry to be held into Cumbrian coal mine

12/03/2021

The Government has 'called in' planing approval of a new coal mine near Whitehaven by Cumbria County Council.

Landmark judgement brings rough sleeping clarity

11/03/2021

Councils have the legal powers to help people with no recourse to public funds (NRPF) who are sleeping rough during the pandemic after a landmark judgement.

Councils left seriously underfunded, NAO finds

08/03/2021

Coronavirus has left local authorities seriously underfunded and facing budget cuts unless the Government can create a long-term financial plan for the sector, a study from the National Audit Office (NAO) has warned.

Budget 2021: Sunak warns of pain to come

03/03/2021

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has unveiled a budget to protect ‘livelihood and jobs’ – with a warning of public finance pain to come.

Unison call for election safety measures

01/03/2021

The Government needs to implement strict measures in May’s local elections to keep staff safe, trade union Unison urged today.

MHCLG to make move from Whitehall to Wolverhampton

22/02/2021

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is setting up a second headquarters in the Black Country as part of plans to shift civil servants away from the capital.

Six councils edge closer to bail out deal

04/02/2021

Six councils are deep in negotiations with the Government in a bid to claw them out of their financial difficulties in the run up to next week’s settlement, The MJ understands.  

Starmer demands halt to ‘absurd’ council tax rises

11/01/2021

Labour leader Keir Starmer has called for central government to increase funding for local authorities to prevent council tax hikes.

MHCLG demands updates after Liverpool mayor arrest

08/12/2020

Government officials have written to the chief executive of Liverpool City Council demanding updates on its governance after the arrest of the city’s mayor last week.

MPs savage abandoned £192m housing scheme

08/12/2020

A £192m affordable housing programme that failed to deliver any homes has been labelled ‘deplorable’ by the Public Accounts Committee.

Allocation of £3.6bn towns fund appears 'politically motivated', watchdog warns

11/11/2020

The Government has been accused of 'political bias' when allocating funding from its £3.6bn Towns Fund by the public spending watchdog.

Croydon issues Section 114 notice

10/11/2020

Crisis-hit Croydon LBC has issued a Section 114 notice after extra spending controls proved not to be enough.

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.

Crisis call for return of Everyone In

04/11/2020

The chief executive of homelessness charity Crisis has called for ring-fenced funding for councils to provide COVID-safe accommodation for anyone at risk of rough sleeping.

Three areas invited to submit unitary proposals

09/10/2020

The Government has today invited councils in three areas to submit proposals for the creation of unitary local authorities by April 2023.

Fragmented council funding risks to value for money, report warns

05/10/2020

The increasing fragmentation in council funding ‘undermines central government’s understanding of service delivery’ and ‘risks impeding value for money,’ a report has warned.

Croydon would have issued s114 'in normal circumstances'

17/09/2020

Croydon LBC’s £49m total net forecast general fund overspend means it would have had to have issued a Section 114 notice in ‘normal circumstances,’ senior councillors have heard.

Councils warn of 'housebuilding fiasco'

15/09/2020

New government housing targets will lead to a north-south divide in England, the Local Government Association (LGA) has warned.

Local government minister quits

08/09/2020

Simon Clarke said he was leaving the Government for 'purely personal reasons’.

Review calls for new local government audit regulator

08/09/2020

A new local government audit body should be created and ministers should change the way they judge the financial stability of councils, a review of local government audit has found.  

Income compensation scheme fails to cover the cost of Covid

25/08/2020

Government plans to compensate councils for income lost due to COVID-19 are only likely to cover half the cost of the losses, it is claimed.

Evictions ban extended

21/08/2020

The Government has extended the ban on evictions of renters for a further month following lobbying by councils.

Councils warn of ‘avalanche of evictions’

21/08/2020

The local government sector is braced for a deluge of homelessness following the end of the evictions ban.

MPs slate ministers over local government funding

23/07/2020

MPs have slated ministers for failing to give local government sufficient funding and urged them to ensure a 'clear and timely financial settlement’ in readiness for the next phase of the pandemic.

Ministry was 'blind' to council investment risks says watchdog

13/07/2020

Ministers have been blind to the risk of commercial investments by councils, Parliament’s spending watchdog has claimed.

Jenrick announces more cash, income compensation and tax delay

02/07/2020

Local government secretary Robert Jenrick has announced more cash and new ways councils will be reimbursed for income lost as a result of coronavirus.

MPs refuse to back down on Westferry

01/07/2020

MPs have refused to accept the Prime Minister’s attempts to close down questions over Robert Jenrick’s decision on the Westferry Printworks planning application.

Luton forced into unavoidable cuts

17/06/2020

Luton BC’s boss has said the council has done all it can but has no other choice than to cut 365 jobs and frontline services.

Councils call for clarity on local lockdowns

16/06/2020

Councils this week called for clarity on the legal powers they will have if they are forced to implement local coronavirus lockdowns.

CIPFA issues temporary s114 guidance

11/06/2020

Council finance chiefs have been given new guidelines for dealing with financial collapse during the coronavirus crisis.

LGA split over worker bonus

26/05/2020

A cross-party agreement that the Local Government Association (LGA) would lobby for a coronavirus payment to staff was ditched after senior councillors blocked the move, The MJ can reveal.

No bail outs for commercial investments

22/05/2020

Plans to bail out councils struggling with their finances could vary between authorities - but they will not cover commercial investments, The MJ understands.

No-deal Brexit planning would 'overwhelm' emergency response

19/05/2020

Planning for a no-deal Brexit at the end of this year would ‘overwhelm’ the country’s emergency response capacity, the Government has been warned in a leaked report.

Councils need another £12.8bn to cope with coronavirus - LGA

27/04/2020

Councils may need up to another £12.8bn from the Government to get through the coronavirus crisis, the chairman of the Local Government Association (LGA) has suggested.

Jenrick unveils an extra £1.6bn for coronavirus crisis

18/04/2020

Councils are to receive an extra £1.6bn in funding to deal with the coronavirus crisis, communities secretary Robert Jenrick has announced.

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.

Seven out of 10 councils overspend on homelessness

28/01/2020

Seven out of 10 English councils overspent their homelessness budgets in 2018/19 by a combined total of nearly £115m, Local Government Association (LGA) analysis has found.

Sector presses for further action on cladding

21/01/2020

Building safety reforms billed as the ‘biggest change for a generation’ do not go far enough to clamp down on potentially dangerous cladding, councils argued this week.

Jenrick hails 'biggest multi-billion pound spending increase in a decade'

20/12/2019

Local government secretary Robert Jenrick has confirmed what he describes as the ‘biggest multi-billion pound spending increase for councils in a decade’.

Whitehall silence as Gwynne calls for provisional settlement

17/12/2019

Shadow local government secretary Andrew Gwynne has called on ministers to publish the provisional finance settlement immediately amid silence on its timing from Whitehall.

No starter homes have been built yet, investigation finds

05/11/2019

None of the Government’s planned ‘starter homes’ have yet been built as legislation has not been implemented, a report by the National Audit Office (NAO) has found.

Government warned resilience forums could be stretched

04/09/2019

Local resilience forums (LRFs) would be stretched if Brexit forced them into 24/7 operations over an extended period, the Government has been warned in a report leaked to The MJ.

Councils face more funding uncertainty

14/08/2019

‘Indicative numbers’ for the amount councils will receive in 2020/21 will not be published before next month’s Spending Review, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has admitted after it missed a self-imposed deadline.

Government activates emergency funds for flood-hit councils

12/08/2019

The Government has activated an emergency fund for councils affected by flooding.

Local government ‘shut out’ of Brexit discussions, Labour warns

08/08/2019

Andrew Gwynne, the shadow secretary of state for communities and local government, has raised concerns that local authorities will not be represented on the Government’s EU Exit Operations Committee.

Financial risk for children's services across London is 'unsustainable'

22/07/2019

Children’s services across London are facing an unsustainable level of financial risk, a new report commissioned by London Councils has warned.

LEPs ‘lack transparency’ despite receiving £12bn of Government funding

05/07/2019

The Government has ‘no real understanding’ of the impact which the Local Growth Fund has had on local economic growth despite investing £12bn of taxpayers’ money, MPs say.

NAO to wade into fair funding review

05/06/2019

The National Audit Office (NAO) is gearing up to scrutinise the Government’s divisive fair funding review, The MJ can reveal.

Government pays £15m to councils after business rate 'error'

03/06/2019

The Government may have to pay out up to £15m to councils after it made yet another error in its business rate pilot administration.

Council governance systems ‘inadequate’ for austerity era

15/05/2019

The Government has not done enough to ensure that governance systems in local authorities are suitable for an ‘era of financial pressure and rapid change’, MPs have warned.

Delay to Northamptonshire reorganisation welcomed

14/05/2019

Council leaders have welcomed the year-long delay to plans to create two new unitaries in Northamptonshire.

Brokenshire moves to boost local government accountability

09/05/2019

Brokenshire moves to impose fresh conditions on ‘top slice’ cash

Hopes for legislative backing behind new code

24/04/2019

An overhaul of financial management in councils could be enshrined in law, according to a consultation that stakeholders must respond to within days to influence.

Concern over councils' ability to cope with polls

17/04/2019

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

Call for inspection pause in case of Brexit hit

10/04/2019

Council chiefs have urged Whitehall to be ready to ease pressures on the sector for up to six months if Brexit threatens to stretch capacity.

Councils defend council tax hikes

27/03/2019

Councils have had ‘little choice’ but to raise council tax to protect local services, the Local Government Association has said, after the latest tax rises were revealed.

Sector fumes over lack of pre-Brexit briefing

21/02/2019

Councils have threatened to walk away from Government attempts to engage with them on Brexit amid growing frustrations about the response to their concerns.

MPs pile pressure on Government over business rates reform

21/02/2019

MPs have urged ministers to assess specific proposals for reforming business rates by the autumn.

MHCLG to make 'compelling case' for more funding

13/02/2019

Local government minister Rishi Sunak has vowed that his department will ‘make a compelling case’ for more funding ahead of this year’s Spending Review.

Councils accused of not doing enough to prepare for Brexit

04/02/2019

Councils are not doing enough to prepare for Brexit and need to step up their game, the concerned Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has told sector figures.

Brokenshire gets Brexit breakdown from chiefs

31/01/2019

Chief executives have told communities secretary James Brokenshire Whitehall needs to be more joined up between departments and in its communications with councils over Brexit.

LGA faces financial headache

25/01/2019

Smith Square has acknowledged the financial challenges it faces as it freezes subscriptions while grappling with declining Government grants and a pension scheme deficit.

Buckinghamshire districts threaten legal action over unitary plan

21/01/2019

Two Buckinghamshire districts have written to the Government warning they could launch legal proceedings over plans to create a single county unitary.

Whitehall 'leadership' needed to help councils cope with financial pressures

15/01/2019

The Government must improve oversight and transparency over local authorities to ensure their financial sustainability, the National Audit Office (NAO) has said.

Ministers play down commercialisation 'crackdown'

10/01/2019

Ministers have played down the prospect of a widespread crackdown on councils that borrow for commercial reasons.

London Councils forms company to tackle homelessness

02/01/2019

A not-for-profit company will be created to provide housing for homeless families in 11 London boroughs.

Finance settlement: Government floats commercialisation crackdown

13/12/2018

Whitehall is considering a crackdown on councils that excessively borrow for commercial reasons as it continues to restrict council tax rises.

Local government finance settlement delayed by Brexit debate

05/12/2018

Today's provisional local government finance settlement has been delayed – just weeks after Whitehall agreed to bring it forward and fix a date.

At least 160 youth centres have closed since 2016, FOI reveals

03/12/2018

At least 160 youth centres have closed since 2016, a report based on Freedom of Information Act requests by Unison claims.

MHCLG ‘not expecting another Northamptonshire situation’

26/11/2018

Local government finances are sustainable and the collapse of another authority is not expected, the ministry’s top civil servant has insisted.

Labour hits out at housing cash shift

12/11/2018

Labour has called for all areas to receive greater Government backing after Whitehall shifted the focus of its housing cash.

No-deal Brexit disruption warning

31/10/2018

Local authorities have been warned to prepare for up to three months of disruption in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Ministry moves on Brexit

24/10/2018

Senior Marsham Street officials have stepped up their preparations for Brexit after complaints from frustrated councils that they were being shut out of the process.

Rotherham council to regain full control of services

19/09/2018

All powers are to be returned to Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, three years after government intervention.

LEPs told to improve ahead of EU funding changes

06/09/2018

Fresh concerns have emerged about local enterprise partnerships (LEP) as the Government considers whether to use them to funnel UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) cash.

Government steps in following Grenfell Tower outcry

01/08/2018

The Government will take on responsibility for the Grenfell Tower site, Marsham Street has announced.

Working homeless figures soar over five years

23/07/2018

The number of families described as ‘working homeless’ has soared over the past five years, housing charity Shelter has warned.

Rise in children's services spending

28/06/2018

The amount expected to be spent on children’s social care in 2018/19 is up 6.8% or £542m compared to the figure in 2017/18 budgets, latest figures have shown.

£30m cash boost to tackle rough sleepers

09/06/2018

Communities secretary James Brokenshire has announced a £30m cash boost to tackle rough sleepers in the worst hit parts of the country.

James Brokenshire replaces Javid as local government secretary

30/04/2018

James Brokenshire has been appointed new secretary of state for housing, communities and local government after Sajid Javid was named as the new home secretary.

Time for a council tax precept to fund CCTV image

Time for a council tax precept to fund CCTV

The crisis in funding for CCTV systems is not being addressed by the government or the police and is leading to the curtailment of this vital service in local authorities across the country. How can we ensure that communities that want this service continue to receive it, asks Tom Reeve.
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