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News and Press Releases

Below are all the Whats New articles for year 2006.

Strong and Prosperous Communities - Key Points from the Local Government White Paper
The Department for Communities and Local Government has published the Local Government White Paper. The aim of this paper is to give local people more influence and power to improve their lives. SIGOMA has published an initial response to the White Paper - SIGOMA members can use the link above to be directed to the briefing.
Queens Speech 2006 - Bills
Following the Queens Speech 2006, SIGOMA has composed a full list of all the bills announced on 15th November 2006. This and a separate document detailing the forthcoming Local Government Bill can be found by clicking on the above link.
Slivers of Time Working
Richard Manby gave the policy officers group a presentation on this project, which allows people to sell small amounts of time to local employers. The project is aimed at people who are not available for regular work and can help benefits claimants back into work as they build experience and confidence. It is running in Newham, London, and Richard is keen to speak to other local authorities to discuss how it can be applied in their area. Click on the title above to see the website.
Housing and Planning Delivery Grant
In December 2005 the Government announced as part of the response to Kate Barker's Review of Housing Supply to reform the Planning Delivery Grant and undertake a wider consultation on planning and housing incentives. The aim being to improve the financial framework within which local authorities are able to respond to the housing needs of their communities. This consultation paper sets out principles and potential options that the Government could use to develop a new housing and planning delivery grant. SIGOMA members can comment on our draft response to the paper by clicking on 'consultation papers' in the menu.
Reform to bring "devolution to the doorstep"
Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly has today announced that the Government "will not soft pedal or step-back from radical reform" in a speech setting out new proposals to ensure local government reform brings a "new era of shifting power to our communities". The read the full DCLG news release click on the link above.
Real People in Real Places
SIGOMAs latest report sets out four key principles for the future of local government and uses local case studies to show how large, urban authorities are already deliveiring real change in our urban areas. With fairer funding and greater freedoms, the report claims that local authorities can deliver more. This is SIGOMAs final evidence for Sir Michael Lyons' Inquiry into the role and funding of local Government. To see the full report click on the link above.
New Inquiry on the Comprehensive Spending Review: Emerging Issues
The Treasury Committee has decided to undertake a short inquiry into the Comprehensive Spending Review: emerging issues. The Committee decision follows the publicaton by the Treasury on 13 July of a document entitled Releasing the Resources to meet the challenges ahead: value for money in the 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review. A full SIGOMA member briefing can be viewed by clicking on the link above.
Devolution to and from the Town Hall
Ruth Kelly, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has today set her agenda for devolution that will see communities in control of their services and local quality of life. The speech explains that as central government devovles power to local authorities, they must in turn, look more to what their communities want. To read the full speech click on the link above.
Next Steps towards a Supporting People Strategy
Phil Woolas MP gave a speech at the National Housing Federation's Housing Care and Support Conference on 11 July to set out the next steps of the supporting people strategy. The speech launches the "Next Steps" publication which summarises the responses to the consultation and sets out government thinking so far. To read the full speech click n the link above.
National Evaluation of Local Strategic Partnerships: Theory of Change Issues
This paper was published by the Department for Communities and Local Government on the 10 July 2006 and marks one of the many outputs from the first phase of evaluations of Local Strategic Partnerships. The paper discusses the contribution of a theory of change methodology within the evaluation. To read to full document please click on the link above.
Tackling deep-seated social exclusion
Social Exclusion Minister Hilary Armstrong today announced a new Taskforce that will put social exclusion at the heart of the government. Speaking ater chairing the first cabinet committee for social exclusion today, she sets out the next steps for the Government's drive to tackle deep-seated social disadvantage.
The SIGOMA Profile: A Review of Key Issues Across our Urban Areas
This report profiles the position of SIGOMAs urban areas against other regions and the country as a whole. It shows where the gaps between regions of England and SIGOMA areas are still important, as well as areas in which progress has already been made. To read more click on the link above.
SIGOMA Response to the Provisional 2007/08 Local Government Finance Settlement
Click on the link above to view SIGOMAs response to the Local Government Finance Settlement.
Reaching Out: An Action Plan on Social Exclusion
Minister for Social Exclusion, Hilary Armstrong, yesterday launched the governments approach to tackling social exlcusion. Reaching Out: An Action Plan on Social Exclusion sets out a two pronged approach for taking forward the Governments social inclusion agenda. It sets out a vision of system reform to drive both earlier identification and tergeting of those most at risk social exclusion in later life, and the adoption of effective practice by health, education and social services in relation to the most socially excluded. To read the document in full click on the link above.
Empowerment and the Deal for Devolution - Summary of Responses
The Department for Communities and Local Government has published a summary of the key issues raised in relation to questions posed in the February 2006 discussion document. To read the summary click on the link above.

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