Weekly media round-up 20/06/15 – 26/06/15
This week has seen 629 LGA mentions in national, regional, trade, broadcast and online publications including 31 LGA mentions in national newspapers, broadcast and online articles.
Councils face 3.3bn cut in funding
Friday 26 June
The LGA's warnings about how councils will cope with projected £3.3 billion funding cuts, based on information from the Office for Budget Responsibility, was reported extensively. Chair of the LGA's Improvement and Innovation Board Chair Cllr Peter Fleming was interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live and LBC and this also received coverage on BBC News, Good Morning Britain, BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio 4's Today news bulletins. The Mirror, Times, Independent Online and ITV Online also covered the story. LGA Chair Cllr David Sparks said: "By the end of the decade councils will face a £9.5 billion funding gap. There are no efficiencies left to be made for many councils while many now warn efficiencies alone will not be enough to cope with further funding cuts. Vital services, such as caring for the elderly, protecting children, collecting bins and filling potholes, will struggle to continue at current levels."
Working parents struggling to find childcare due to insufficient places
Friday 26 June
The LGA's response to figures showing working parents are struggling to find childcare because there are insufficient places in nearly six out of 10 local authority areas featured on Independent Online. Cllr David Simmonds, Chairman of the LGA's Children and Young People Board, said: "Across the country, councils are working with local, private, charitable and voluntary organisations to ensure there are as many high quality and affordable nursery places as possible, but with funding wrapped up in the red tape of the wider schools budget, the current system is stifling councils' ability to deliver the level of childcare that we all know we need."
UK 'not on track to end child poverty by 2020' as figures remain unchanged
Thursday 25 June
The LGA's Cllr Simmonds featured on Guardian Online in response to new figures showing the number of children living in poverty. The Department for Work and Pensions survey showed that the percentage of children in relative and absolute poverty was unchanged, although there was a statistically insignificant fall of 100,000 for both measures. Cllr Simmonds said: "There are parts of the UK where there is much more to be done to raise children out of poverty and councils are playing an extremely active role because their detailed knowledge of their local community means they are best placed to lead the way."
LGA calls for common sense approach to term-time holidays
Wednesday 24 June
The LGA's Children and Young People Board Chair Cllr David Simmonds was interviewed live on the BBC's Victoria Derbyshire Show and BBC Radio 5 Live's Breakfast show about fines for parents who take their children out of school during term time, reiterating the LGA's calls for a common sense approach to term time holidays. A clip of Cllr Simmonds' interview also featured in a BBC Radio 5 Live news bulletin.
Schools paying up to £50k to find good headteachers
Tuesday 23 June
Chair of the LGA's Children and Young People Board Cllr David Simmonds featured in the Guardian calling for action about how many schools are having to pay out up to £50,000 to education recruitment companies to headhunt good headteachers. Cllr Simmonds said: "We're hearing about a growing number of schools having to advertise leadership positions two or three times to secure a single appointable candidate." The LGA is planning to investigate this problem and has called for action to avert the crisis.
Want to try laughing gas? It's all fun and games until you die
Monday 22 June
The LGA's media release on the dangers of nitrous oxide, also known as laughing gas, was referenced on Star Online.
Oversize lorries causing "bedlam" on rural roads
Saturday 20 June
The LGA's warning that lorries are bringing "bedlam" to villages because of a rise in the number of lorries attempting to use narrow country lanes was widely reported, with Transport spokesman Cllr Mike Jones interviewed on BBC Radio 4's Today programme and BBC Radio 5 Live. This was also covered on BBC Breakfast, BBC Radio 2, 3, 4, 5 Live and LBC news bulletins and in the Mail, BBC Online, Times and Telegraph. The LGA's Cllr Peter Box said: "There has been a spate of accidents involving lorry drivers driving irresponsibly and bringing bedlam to small rural communities – and action must be taken immediately to curb this."
26 June 2015
19 June 2015
12 July 2015
5 July 2015
29 May 2015
22 May 2015