Local Government News

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Housing associations to trial drones
[Sep 4, 2014, by Carl Brown, Inside Housing]
Two housing associations have become the first to purchase drones - flying camera-installed devices - to try to reduce the costs of managing their homes.

Eligibility criteria set for expanded Troubled Families work
[Sep 2, 2014, by Mark Smulian, Local Government Chronicle]
Councils must meet three criteria to secure payment from the government under the expanded Troubled Families programme, but will have wider freedoms to decide who qualifies for support.

Councils still first choice for schools help, YouGov survey finds
[Sep 1, 2014, by Jonathan Werran in the MJ]
Most London parents would seek help from their local authority first over any concerns with their local schools, a survey conducted by pollsters YouGov has revealed.

Parishes join LGA demand for 'fracking benefit'
[Aug 29, 2014, by Richard Johnstone, Public Finance]
Parish councils and the Local Government Association are to work together to develop community benefit schemes to manage the locally retained revenues from fracking for shale gas.

Recyclers to be rewarded with shopping vouchers
[Aug 29, 2014, by Steven Swinford, The Telegraph]
Tens of thousands of households will be given shopping vouchers if they recycle more under a £5 million fund to promote weekly bin collections, the local government secretary has announced.

Councils tendering care contracts case by case in online 'auctions'
[Aug 28, 2014, by Diane Taylor, The Guardian]
Councils are putting care packages for vulnerable people out to tender in eBay-style timed "auctions", the Guardian has learned.

Homes for new town a step closer
[Aug 27, 2014, by Emily Twinch, Inside Housing]
The Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) handed in the outline plans for the 'heart' of a new town, Northstowe, to South Cambridgeshire Council last week. Northstowe would be the largest planned town since Milton Keynes, with 3,500 homes planned.

Enthusiasm 'high' for Better Care Fund
[Aug 22, 2014, by Dan Peters, The MJ]
The new Better Care Fund (BCF) programme director has insisted council chief executives have not lost interest or enthusiasm for delivering the flagship policy.

Bond agency will help councils
[Aug 21, 2014, by Dan Peters, The MJ]
The Local Government Association’s (LGA) municipal bonds agency will help local authorities secure funding more easily and cheaply, new research suggested.

New website lists underused or empty buildings owned by government
[Aug 20, 2014, by Hilary Osborne, The Guardian]
A website launched by the Cabinet Office today (Wednesday) will allow members of the public to search through 31,000 publicly owned assets and make the case for them to be sold individually on the open market.

Younger children to be included in Troubled Families work
[Aug 19, 2014, by Rosie Niven, Local Government Chronicle]
Following on from yesterday’s announcement that the Troubled Families Programme will be expanded to cover 500,000 households, ministers said that a wider range of families will be targeted. The programme will now work with children under the age of five, in addition to school-age children, with a pa

Borrowing rates sluggish, figures show
[Aug 19, 2014, by Mark Smulian, Local Government Chronicle]
Local authority borrowing would have fallen in 2013-14 were it not for activity in London, government figures have shown. The Department for Communities & Local Government’s Local Authority Borrowing and Investments, UK 2013-14 publication said total gross borrowing by UK local government rose by 0.

Boris told to work with boroughs on regeneration
[Aug 15, 2014, by Jamie Hailstone in the MJ]
The London Assembly has urged Boris Johnson to work more closely with London boroughs and get post-riot regeneration projects back on track.

Lewis launches £400m brownfield land development fund
[Aug 14, 2014, by Helen Moody in Public Finance]
Councils will be able to join forces with developers to bid for a share of £200m in cash to build new homes on previously-developed land, housing and planning minister Brandon Lewis has announced.

Unemployment falls to six-year low
[Aug 13, 2014, by Richard Johnstone in Public Finance]
The UK unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level in nearly six years following a 132,000 drop in the number of people out of work in the second quarter of the year, the Office for National Statistics has said.

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