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Council News Monitor is curated content pulled together each week by an automated content aggregation programme developed in-house by Boilerhouse Online Publications

@councilnewsuk

Council news from Blackpool, Leeds, Leicestershire, Worcestershire, Peterborough, Hampshire, Barnet, Falkirk, Denbighshire and others

Blackpool turns down £7m apartment scheme; government turns down Leeds £250m trolley bus; Babcock cut 65 Worcestershire council jobs; Conservatives lose Peterborough after a week; plans for 'super council' in Hampshire; London Assembly says Barnet should not run EU vote in borough; Falkirk votes against new HQ

Newcastle Council unveil plans to build a 'new town' in the west of the city

Newcastle City Council     Source: Chronicle Live

Ambitious plans for thousands of new homes in the west of Newcastle have been unveiled. Newcastle City Council has published its draft masterplan for Callerton which sets out a vision for 3,000 homes.  Read in full

Councillors agree to move on with Combined Authority

Durham County Council     Source: Hartlepool Mail

Councillors agreed to move to the next stage of the devolution process – to create a mayoral combined authority for the North East. The decision by Durham County Council’s cabinet is subject to a number of conditions.  Read in full

Resort is ‘stuck in the mud’

Blackpool Council     Source: The Gazette

Multi-million pound proposals to demolish rundown hotels and replace them with seafront apartments have been thrown out by councillors - prompting warnings a key area of Blackpool may now lose out on investment. Blackpool Council’s planning committee refused to approve a £7m scheme to replace the Kimberley, Waldorf and Henderson Hotels on Wimbourne Place, South Promenade, with 99 apartments.  Read in full

Hillsborough 96 and campaigners to receive city’s top honour

Liverpool City Council     Source: Liverpool City Council press release

Liverpool is to award the Freedom of the City to key figures involved in the 27 year Hillsborough campaign. And, for the first time ever, Liverpool will also award the Freedom of the City posthumously – with the honour going to each of the 96 people who died at Sheffield Wednesday’s ground on 15 April 1989.  Read in full

Leeds' £250m trolley bus scheme rejected

Leeds City Council     Source: BBC News

Plans to build a £250m trolley bus network in Leeds have been rejected by the government. The Department for Transport (DfT) accepted a report from a planning inspector who said the scheme was "not in the public interest".  Read in full

Labour council leaders in Bradford and Huddersfield ousted in wake of elections

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council     Source: Yorkshire Post

The leader of two West Yorkshire councils have failed in their bids to be re-elected. Bradford Council leader David Green and Kirklees Council leader David Sheard were replaced at meetings of their respective Labour groups.  Read in full

Proposals for £83m eastern relief road for Melton are backed by county council’s ruling cabinet

Leicestershire County Council     Source: Melton Times

Proposals for an £83 million eastern relief road in Melton, to ease congestion and boost the economy by £102m per year, have been backed by Leicestershire County Council’s ruling cabinet. Councillor Peter Osborne, cabinet member for highways, told the cabinet meeting: “We want to try to solve the transport problems within Melton and we hope this is going to be welcomed by everyone.”  Read in full

Over £1m withheld from Serco over 'chaotic' council systems

Lincolnshire County Council     Source: Lincolnshire Echo

Over £1m has been withheld from a company for a failure to provide adequate school and county council financial services in Lincolnshire. The new systems have led to a raft of problems including teachers not being paid and schools having difficulties paying suppliers.  Read in full

Revealed: Babcock slashed 65 jobs after controversial deal with Worcestershire County Council

Worcestershire County Council     Source: Evesham Journal

More than 60 council workers have been made redundant since their jobs were controversially transferred to a private company, it has emerged. Worcestershire County Council has revealed that 65 jobs have been slashed by Babcock since it took over the authority's back-office school support function last year.   Read in full

Greater Birmingham consultation blasted as inadequate by Lords

Coventry City Council     Source: Coventry Telegraph

West Midland voters are being forced to accept a new regional mayor and combined authority without proper consultation, the House of Lords has warned. Councils across the region held a consultation on plans to create a new “Greater Birmingham” council earlier this year - but it has been condemned as inadequate.  Read in full

Conservatives lose overall control of Peterborough City Council one week after election

Peterborough City Council     Source: Peterborough Telegraph

A week after David Cameron visited the city to celebrate the only Conservative gain following last Thursday’s elections, the Tories have lost overall control of Peterborough City Council. Seven days on from Cameron’s visit that majority is no-more following the resignation from the party of long-standing councillor Gul Nawaz.  Read in full

No burner on my watch, says new Norfolk County Council leader

Norfolk County Council     Source: Lynn News

The new leader of Norfolk County Council has insisted that an incinerator is not on his agenda as he settles into his new post. Cliff Jordan was a strong supporter of the ill-fated bid to build a burner at Saddlebow, on the edge of Lynn, which was finally dropped two years ago.  Read in full

Proposals for 'super council' in Hampshire announced by county council leader Roy Perry

Hampshire County Council     Source: Daily Echo

Proposals for a new "super-council" covering most of Hampshire and spelling the end for many existing councils have been announced. County council leader Roy Perry has today revealed the recommendations of a report commissioned by the council into the future of local government in Hampshire.   Read in full

Unitary council would be 'costly' for South Bucks

Buckinghamshire County Council     Source: Slough & South Bucks Observer

The restructuring of local authorities in to a unitary model would be "costly and disruptive" according to two district councils. South Bucks and Chiltern District Councils have hit out at the proposal to explore the option of local government in Buckinghamshire coming under one roof, after councillors agreed to produce a business case to look into it.   Read in full

Banes' councillors say Yes to £1 billion devolution deal but No to Metro Mayor

Bath & North East Somerset Council     Source: Bristol Post

Councillors in Bath and North East Somerset have welcomed a £1billion devolution deal for the Bristol region - but they are against plans for a Metro Mayor. They have decided to ask the Government to drop the idea of a Metro Mayor and continue with a chairman to represent the four councils in the former Avon area.  Read in full

Torbay votes to scrap their elected mayoral system

Torbay Council     Source: Express & Echo

Torbay residents have voted to abolish their elected mayoral system. The mayoral referendum asked people how they wanted Torbay Council to be run, principally on whether they continue to have an elected mayor or not.  Read in full

London Assembly says Barnet Council should not run borough's EU referendum vote

Barnet Council     Source: North London Newspapers

The London Assembly has passed a motion proposing that the management of next month’s European Union Referendum be taken out of the hands of Barnet Council. At its first annual meeting, the assembly heard how an estimated 1,000 people were unable to vote at council elections in Barnet.  Read in full

Leader of Brent Council denies claims he hid Kilburn councillor’s death to halt a by-election

Brent Council     Source: Kilburn Times

The leader of Brent Council has sent out an email denying claims that he kept the death of a Kilburn councillor secret to avoid a by-election. Cllr Muhammed Butt said he was “saddened that someone passed an email” alleging he knew of Cllr Tayo Oladapo’s death on January ahead of a public announcement in March.  Read in full

Falkirk Council votes against new £23m HQ and town hall

Falkirk Council     Source: Herald Scotland

A council has all but scrapped plans for a new multi-million pound headquarters despite all ready having spent significant sums of public cash on the plans. Falkirk Council voted against its proposed £23m new base and town hall, with the scheme unlikely to be reconsidered until after next year's local elections.   Read in full

East Lothian Council workers given guidelines on how to snoop on people through Facebook

East Lothian Council     Source: East Lothian Courier

Council workers have been given new guidelines on how to snoop on people in East Lothian using their Facebook accounts. The Surveillance Through Social Media Policy outlines three ways council employees could access social media websites to carry out investigations, including through a "covert identity using a false name".  Read in full

Denbighshire council to stop the right to buy council homes

Denbighshire County Council     Source: BBC News

A third north Wales council has voted to stop people buying their own council houses after losing more than 4,000 homes to the policy. Denbighshire council said there were 10 applicants for every vacant council home in the county and right to buy "threatened investment in new homes".  Read in full

Parents in Cardiff are switching the language their children are taught in because of school places pressure

Cardiff Council     Source: WalesOnline

Parents of five children at an English language primary school have applied for them to start at a Welsh-medium secondary school as the squeeze on places in Cardiff intensifies. In a new twist on the city’s school admissions saga , five pupils at Marlborough Primary School in Roath could end up continuing their education in a different language at Ysgol Gyfun Gymraeg Bro Edern, in Penylan.  Read in full

Nationalists complain after being left off EU cash partnership

Mid and East Antrim District Council     Source: The Irish News

Unionists on a Co Antrim council have been accused of being “hypocritical” after no nationalists were appointed to a partnership set up to distribute £2.6 million of European ‘peace’ cash. SDLP councillor Declan O’Loan hit out after six unionist councillors were appointed to distribute the ‘Peace IV’ cash across the Mid and East Antrim Borough Council district.  Read in full

Staff at 11 Belfast City Council leisure centres to take strike action

Belfast City Council     Source: 4NI.co.uk

Staff at 11 Belfast City Council Leisure Centres are to take strike action over pensions and staffing, according to Unite the union. Workers at Andersonstown, Whiterock, Falls Rd, Olympia, Ballysillan, Avoneill, Grove Well-being, Loughside, Ozone, Belvoir and Shankill Road Leisure Centres will begin a 'work to rule' and overtime ban next Tuesday, 24 May.  Read in full

And finally…

Council misquotes Peter Pan author

Angus Council     Source: Fife Today

Angus Council has been forced to rip up slabs in the redeveloped Kirriemuir town centre after it emerged they had misquoted Sir J.M. Barrie. The wraps came off the new-look Square days before the town hosted the popular BonFest - but it emerged a quotation attributed to the town’s famous son is inaccurate.  Read in full

 

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