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


Council news from Cheshire, Leeds, Leicestershire, West Midlands, Essex, Medway, North Somerset, Dundee and Cardiff and more...

Councils in Cheshire to get elected mayor; Leeds City Council to save money through digitisation project; MP delays launch of West Midlands Combined Authority; councils in Essex vote against elected mayor; Medway Council to sell off public community centres; North Somerset Council votes against metro mayor for area; Cardiff Council plans to install LED lights © PHOTO: FOUNTAIN GARGOYLE, MANCHESTER by PHIL LONG

Manchester City Council endorses single hospital trust

Manchester City Council     Source: Public Sector Executive

Manchester’s three central hospitals are to be joined together in an ambitious healthcare plan after it was approved by Manchester City Council’s Health and Wellbeing Board. The committee’s decision means that Pennine Acute NHS Trust, Central Manchester University Hospital NHS FT and University Hospital of South Manchester NHS FT will produce an initial assessment of the implementation process and the timescales required.  Read in full

Newcastle under Lyme council reduces cost of misreported missed bin collection by 40%

Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council      Source: Public Service Digital
Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council has reduced missed collections by 40% by getting drivers to collect information electronically, allowing the council to challenge those who simply forgot to put bins out.

Plans for £50m Northumberland council site transformation scrapped

Northumberland County Council     Source: Chronicle Live

Plans to build a £50m state-of-the-art school and leisure complex on the Northumberland County Council site have been scrapped. The multi-million pound scheme was due to be built on the existing site County Hall, in Morpeth.   Read in full

£9m South Tyneside health ‘haven’ moves step closer to completion

South Tyneside Council     Source: Shields Gazette

A multi-million pound health ‘haven’ being launched to provide vital care for older generations in South Tyneside has moved another step closer to completion. Work on the centre, which is being built by South Tyneside NHS Foundation Trust on behalf of South Tyneside Council, got under way last May.  Read in full

Cheshire 'to get elected mayor' in devolution deal

Warrington Borough Council     Source: BBC News

Cheshire will get an elected mayor as part of a devolution deal set to be unveiled in coming weeks, the BBC understands. Three of Cheshire's four councils submitted a bid for more powers and funding from government last August.  Read in full

Digitisation plan will reduce Leeds council’s paper mountain and help slash petrol claims by employees

Leeds City Council     Source: Yorkshire Evening Post

A mountain of paper records which is clogging up Leeds City Council buildings - and hiking up mileage claims as staff drive to access the documents - is to be digitised, with the hope of saving the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of pounds in the long term. The project will see 600 filing cabinets’ worth of information - relating to 57,000 council housing tenants - being converted to ‘e-file’ format.  Read in full

Grimsby MP: ‘Ill-fitting’ devolution deal ‘needs to suit local community’

North East Lincolnshire Council     Source: Grimsby Telegraph

Grimsby's MP has called for a re-think on the "ill-fitting" devolution deal for North East Lincolnshire. Melanie Onn spoke out about the state of devolution for the area at the all-party parliamentary group meeting for Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire, calling for Grimsby's near neighbours not to forget about the South Bank as Yorkshire power-sharing talks continue.  Read in full

Leicestershire looks to bring household waste services in-house

Leicestershire County Council     Source:

Running of household waste and recycling centres (HWRCs) could be brought in-house by Leicestershire county council in a bid to save £250,000 per-year from the cost of the service. The council’s cabinet will discuss the proposals to take over the running of 13 of the county’s 14 HWRC sites on 17 June – from contractor Environmental Waste Controls, which signed a contract to run the sites in 2006.  Read in full

Residents' joy at council's streetlight blackout back down

Lincolnshire County Council     Source: Lincolnshire Echo

Residents across Lincolnshire are breathing a sigh of relief after the county council backed down on plans to turn some streetlights off by 10pm. Lincolnshire County Council had previously decided to turn 38,000 streetlights off at either 10pm or midnight in a bid to save money as it looks to make savings of £41 million over the next financial year.  Read in full

MP Spellar throws spanner into launch of West Midlands Combined Authority

West Midlands Combined Authority     Source: Birmingham Mail

Birmingham and Black Country politicians have been left red-faced after an MP threw a spanner into celebrations to launch the new West Midlands Combined Authority. The new authority – WMCA, for short – a coalition of seven metropolitan councils, was due to be legally confirmed on Friday, June 10 and take responsibility for billions of pounds of Government spending on transport and economy growth across the West Midlands.   Read in full

Sandwell Council to lose control of 'inadequate' children's services

Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council     Source: Express & Star

Children’s services in Sandwell will be taken out of the council’s control, after a government expert said progress has ‘not been good enough’. Eleanor Brazil was parachuted into the under-fire department in December as a commissioner following an ‘inadequate’ Ofsted ranking, and given a six-month watching brief.  Read in full

Council leaders in Essex vote against elected mayor with authority over south Essex

Thurrock Council     Source: Thurrock Gazette

Council leaders in Essex have narrowly voted against an elected mayor which would have had authority over south Essex – including Southend and Thurrock. The 15 leaders of the county, district, and unitary authorities met to discuss the devolution packages being offered by the Government which would give combined councils more powers currently held by Whitehall.   Read in full

Luton council approve plans to hand out £400 fines to fly-tippers

Luton Borough Council     Source: Bedfordshire on Sunday

Fly-tippers in Luton face £400 fixed fines after the council passed a motion to crack down on the problem. The illegal dumping of waste is causing a headache for Luton Borough Council, with the 3,262 recorded incidents in 2013/14 rising to a whopping 4,756 in 2015/16.  Read in full

Medway Council to sell off community centres

Medway Council     Source: Maidstone and Medway News

Medway Council has set out a list of public community centres set to be sold off, or disposed of. The cabinet met to discuss the fate of the council run facilities deemed surplus to requirements. The council will also be selling three car parks.  Read in full

Basingstoke council commissions own study into re-shuffle

Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council     Source: Basingstoke Observer

Basingstoke’s council has reacted to claims that Hampshire should replace all of its existing authorities with one ‘mega council’ by ordering a review into how local government should operate countywide. Hampshire County Council is due to consult the area’s 1.3 million residents over whether they would like to be ruled by a single unitary body, after claiming that the move could save more than £40million a year.  Read in full

Council says no to £1 billion metro mayor and devolution deal

North Somerset Council     Source: Bristol Post

One of Bristol's neighbouring councils has given a resounding thumbs-down to a devolution deal which could see £1 billion of Government funding pumped into the Bristol region. At an extraordinary meeting, North Somerset councillors voted overwhelmingly against the devolution deal which would see the four local authorities – Bristol, South Gloucestershire, North Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset, come together as a combined authority under an elected 'Metro Mayor.'  Read in full

Gloucestershire County Council goes ahead with major shake-up of children's centres

Gloucestershire County Council     Source: Gloucestershire Echo

Children's services run by Gloucestershire County Council will undergo a radical shake-up. The authority's cabinet voted to adopt a policy which will see 16 super children's centre's created to provide help to children aged up to 11 and their parents in the areas of greatest deprivation in the county.  Read in full

Croydon Council leader Tony Newman labels campaign for directly elected mayor an 'attack' on democracy

Croydon Council     Source: Croydon Guardian

Croydon’s Council leader has claimed a campaign calling for the borough to be run by a directly elected mayor is an “attack on local democracy” and is based on an “entirely false premise”. Gavin Barwell MP for Croydon Central and Chris Philp MP for Croydon South, launched a petition alongside 10 residents associations calling for the voters to be able to elect their own mayor.   Read in full

Richmond and Wandsworth finalise Capita shared finance deal

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames     Source: Government Computing

Richmond and Wandsworth councils have signed a contract with Capita Local Government for the provision of a joint finance system and related transactional services anticipated to save an estimated £6.8m. Having announced that the company was chosen as preferred bidder to provide the shared financial service earlier this year, the two authorities have finalised the contract, which forms part of ongoing work to create a shared workforce arrangement.  Read in full


EIS conference hears of ‘black hole’ risk in named person plans

Dundee City Council     Source: The Courier

The controversial named person scheme could create a “black hole” in child protection and increase teacher workloads, teachers have warned. Speaking at the EIS AGM in the Caird Hall in Dundee, local EIS secretary David Baxter demanded an investigation into how teachers who are appointed named persons are supposed to fit their duties into a 35-hour working week and a 195-day working year.  Read in full

£10m funding pledge for new affordable homes in Dundee

Dundee City Council     Source: BBC News

More than £10m of Scottish government funding has been allocated to build up to 150 new affordable homes in Dundee over the next two years. The allocation to the city's affordable housing supply programme is double the amount of last year's funding. Dundee City Council's strategic housing investment plan (Ship) outlines both major and smaller proposed schemes.  Read in full

Cardiff council wants to spend £4.4m replacing street lights with LED lights

Cardiff Council     Source: WalesOnline

Cardiff council looks set to spend £4.4m on replacing street lights with LED lights across the city. The council wants to install 13,608 LED lights on almost all of the city’s main bus routes and highways.  Read in full

Gwynedd Council will charge £33 for garden waste collections every year

Gwynedd Council     Source: Daily Post

Gardeners in Gwynedd will have to fork out up to £33 a year to have their garden waste collected fortnightly. Nine Welsh authorities, including Denbighshire , already charge for the collection of garden waste.  Read in full

£100million investment in borough school schemes

Mid and East Antrim District Council     Source: Antrim Times

Almost £100m is to be invested in local schools under the Department of Education’s Major Capital Investment Programme it has been confirmed. Details of projects currently planned or underway in the borough were contained in correspondence from the DENI Director of Investment and Infrastructure Philip Irwin which was presented to the June meeting of Mid & East Antrim Council.  Read in full

Council intervene over Northlands ‘crisis’

Derry and Strabane District Council     Source: Derry Journal

Derry City and Strabane District Council is seeking an urgent meeting with management at the Northlands addiction treatment centre in Derry. The local addiction clinic hit the headlines recently when the ‘Journal’ revealed that a change in policy could threaten the future of the centre.  Read in full

And finally…

Anger over Doncaster Council gaffe that saw floral war memorial sprayed with pesticides

Doncaster Council     Source: Doncaster Free press

The local authority has been slammed by a military charity, after a bumbling Doncaster Council worker accidentally doused weedkiller over a ‘trench line’ with millions of poppies planted especially for an event to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.  Read in full

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