Thomas Bridge 27 March 2015

Poll indicates widespread concern among council leaders over future services

Poll indicates widespread concern among council leaders over future services image

Only one in 10 council chiefs are confident their local authority can protect frontline services in the face of ongoing austerity, a poll reveals.

A survey of over 100 chief executives and local authority leaders by auditors PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has found 80% believe some town halls will no longer be able to afford delivering essential services in the next five years.

Figures suggest local authority prospects vary dramatically over the near and distant future, with the proportion of respondents confident in their ability to manage savings in the short term reaching 70% but falling to just one in 10 in the longer term.

Partnership working between councils is also thought to be rising up the agenda, with 47% of respondents believing their town hall will be included in a combined authority in five year’s time.

However the findings also indicated concerns about the ultimate outcomes of decentralisation, with only a fifth of leaders and chiefs agreeing their council would have significantly more powers by 2020.

PwC partner and local government leader, Chris Buttress, said it was clear councils are now ‘considering more radical options – from rethinking relationships with customers and communities and better use of digital technologies, to deeper collaboration with partners’.

‘Local authorities have largely responded well to the budget gap of the last four years. They are now anticipating having to do the same again, with less and less certainty of how to achieve this.

‘We have no doubt that the future business model for public services will change significantly in the next four years - and those leading the sector in localities will be the ones who will deliver this new model – changes won’t all necessarily be centrally driven.’

LGPS: Unlocking infrastructure image

LGPS: Unlocking infrastructure

Pension funds can play an important role backing useful projects such as railway infrastructure, water companies and green energy. Mark Whitehead met a man whose organisation invests local government pensions constructively.
Maximising tech spend image

Maximising tech spend

David Beggs calls on local government to take a much broader view of technology to get the most value from it.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Senior Practitioner - Family Support & Protection

Essex County Council
Negotiable
Essex County Council (ECC) is one of the largest and most dynamic local authorities in the UK, serving a population of 2 million residents, and has a England, Essex, Clacton-On-Sea
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Senior Practitioner - Family Support & Protection

Essex County Council
Negotiable
In Essex County Council we are "Serious about Social Work". Having recently won the Best Social Work Employer of the Year Award 2018 and been awarded England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Senior Practitioner - Children in Care

Essex County Council
Negotiable
In ECC we are "Serious about Social Work". Having recently won the Best Social Work Employer of the Year Award 2018 and been awarded 'Outstanding' by England, Essex, Basildon
Recuriter: Essex County Council

My Options - Casual Personal Assistant (PA) Support Worker

Telford & Wrekin Council
£9.36 per hour
Can you make a positive difference to someone’s life? Telford, Shropshire
Recuriter: Telford & Wrekin Council

Local Authority Designated Officer LADO

London Borough of Bexley
£48,570 - £55,182 (inclusive of Choices Flexible Benefits of £2,370 pa)
Do you think you have what it takes to join our team of excellent and dedicated social work professionals? Bexleyheath, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Bexley

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how public sector organisations can unlock the hidden value in their land, and why a new approach to construction could help boost the outcomes of the Government’s One Public Estate programme.

The December issue also considers why learnings from ancient cities could provide the key to promoting wellbeing in the modern built environment. It also contains a case study on how the London Borough of Westminster has provided high quality care for the elderly alongside a block of luxury apartments.

Register for your free digital issue