Weekly media roundup 21/03/15 – 27/03/15

This week has seen 436 LGA mentions in national, regional, trade, broadcast and online publications including 22 LGA mentions in national newspapers, broadcast and online articles.

£1,000 saved over five years following call for council tax ‘freeze'

Friday 27 March

The LGA responded to Communities Secretary Eric Pickles' claims that a council tax freeze saved homeowners an average of £1,000 over five years in the Sun. It was reported that 228 councils across England had agreed to reduce or freeze council tax bills for the coming financial year. The LGA said councils need "more financial freedom" to protect everyday services. A spokesman added: "Local authorities have worked hard to keep bills down. But with every further cut in funding, it is becoming increasingly difficult to protect vital services."

Government retreats on offices into homes plans 

Friday 27 March 

Cllr Peter Box, LGA Housing Spokesman. was quoted in the FT following the Government's decision to drop plans to permanently extend developers' right to convert offices into homes, after concerns from councils and business leaders. The LGA said it was "pleased" the Government was ending the relaxation in the rules. Cllr Box said it had "led to existing businesses being evicted and seen homes created which do not meet the identified needs of a community".

FT p2

Grooming bans could stop child sex abuse say councils 

Thursday 26 March 

The LGA's call for councils to be given the power to apply for child sexual exploitation disruption orders were reported on BBC Online and Mail Online. Cllr David Simmonds, Chairman of the LGA's Children and Young People Board, said: "We need to make it easier to intervene earlier before harm is done. By making it possible for councils to apply swiftly to the courts for an order to disrupt grooming we can help prevent the lives of children being ruined by sexual exploitation." 

BBC Online  

Mail Online

LGA media release  

Britain's potholes will cost £12 billion to fix and it will take 13 years 

Thursday 26 March 

The LGA's response to the annual ALARM survey – which showed councils fixed a record number of potholes last year - was reported in the Mirror, Mail, Times, Express Online, Sky News Online, LBC Online and Telegraph Online. Cllr Peter Box, LGA Transport spokesman said: "Councils need billions, not millions, to bring our roads up to scratch. Councils fixed more potholes than ever before last year – one every 15 seconds - despite spiralling multi-million pound compensation costs and funding cuts." 

Mirror p12

Mail p27  

Times p25  

Express Online  

Sky News Online  

LBC Online

Telegraph Online

LGA media release

Report exposes Britain's unhealthiest high streets 

Thursday 26 March 

Chair of the LGA's Improvement and Innovation Board Cllr Peter Fleming was interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live on the LGA's response to a Royal Society for Public Health league table of Britain's "unhealthiest" high streets. The response was also covered in the Guardian and on BBC Radio 5 Live news bulletins. 

Cllr Peter Fleming interview on BBC Radio 5 Live 

Guardian p17

BBC Radio 5 Live news bulletin

LGA media release

Let pupils skip class for family holidays, says teachers' union 

Thursday 26 March 

The Mail referenced the LGA's calls for greater flexibility for headteachers to decide on children being taken out of school for term-term holidays. It followed the National Union of Teachers also demanding an end to the ban on children being taken out of school for term-time holidays. It warned that family holidays risk becoming the preserve of the middle classes and that the rules are unfair on working parents. 

Mail p21

LGA media release

Councils face £100m bill for surge in legal safeguards for vulnerable people 

Wednesday 25 March 

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the LGA's Community Wellbeing Board, featured in the Guardian to call for Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards to be fully funded. The LGA said the Government must foot the £100 million extra costs of extra assessments. Cllr Seccombe said: "Failure to do this will have a hugely damaging impact on crucial social-care services, on which people rely, and will lead to more vulnerable people left facing long waiting times for assessments." 

Guardian Online

Care for elderly and young swallows half of council tax 

Tuesday 23 March 

LGA analysis revealing that nearly half of the money raised by council tax goes on social care for children and the elderly was covered by the Times, Mail and Guardian as part of the LGA's Local Government Finance Day. Chair Cllr David Sparks said: "This analysis shows the pinch that families all over the country will feel from central government continuing to reduce funding for local services." LGA Resources Board Chair Cllr Claire Kober was also interviewed by LBC warning about the impact of further cuts and calling for fairer funding for local government. 

Times p2

Guardian online

Cllr Claire Kober interviewed on LBC

LGA media release

We urgently need to confront the true costs of social care 

Sunday 22 March 

The LGA's estimate of £4.3 billion funding gap in social care by the end of the decade was referred to in a letter to the Observer on Sunday. The letter from Janet Morrison, Chief Executive of Independent Age, highlighted the issue of whether as a society we are prepared to pay for a fully functional and fully costed social care system. 

Observer p48

LGA media release

Expressways and Wi-fi connected roads to ease Britain's congestion 

Saturday 21 March 

The LGA's response to a £15 billion roads investment unveiled by Highways England, will also include the transformation of 18 of the busiest A-roads into European-style expressways, was reported in the FT. An LGA spokesman said: "Increasing motorway lanes and improving A-roads won't ease congestion, but will only speed up cars between growing delays and traffic jams on local roads." 

FT p3


27 March 2015

Weekly media roundup 21/03/15 – 27/03/15

27 March 2015

This week has seen 436 LGA mentions in national, regional, trade, broadcast and online publications including 22 LGA mentions in national newspapers, broadcast and online articles.

Weekly media roundup 14/03/15 – 20/03/15

20 March 2015

This week has seen 311 LGA mentions in national, regional, trade, broadcast and online publications including 22 LGA mentions in national newspapers, broadcast and online articles.