News from the Leader of the LGA Labour Group - 9 January 2018

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9 January 2018

Cllr Nick Forbes

News from the Leader of the LGA Labour Group

Cllr Nick Forbes
Leader of the LGA Labour Group

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News from Local Labour

Waltham Forest council is to offer extra time off to staff whose babies are born prematurely.

Cllr Linda Thomas has been elected the new leader of Bolton Council. Cllr Cliff Morris stepped down as leader at the end of 2017.

Cllr Alice Perry writes about the forthcoming Labour Party National Policy Forum.

Communities secretary, Sajid Javid, has confirmed a two-year stay on high-value asset payments after Islington Cllr Diarmaid Ward’s 61-day Twitter campaign.

Many tributes have been paid to Tameside Leader Cllr Kieron Quinn who sadly passed away following a heart attack.

Time is running out to book a ticket to Labour Local Government Conference 2018

The Association of Labour Councillors (ALC) and LGA Labour Group Local Government Conference will take place on Friday and Saturday 2/3 February 2018. 

This event is an opportunity for Labour’s local government family to meet and discuss a range of issues relevant to local government and Labour. In addition to keynote speakers and plenary sessions, there will be a series of policy and campaigning workshops. Rt Hon Jeremy Corbyn MP is confirmed to speak along with many other members of Labour’s front bench team.

The details are:

Friday 2 February 2018, 19.30 – 22.30
Drinks reception and dinner

Saturday 3 February 2018, 09.00 – 17.00
Local Government Conference

The conference will be held at East Midlands Conference Centre, University Park, Nottingham NG7 2RJ. To book your place please visit our website. Please note we are only able to take online bookings with a debit or credit card. Reserve your place now

Newly elected Councillors are entitled to a free conference pass. You should have received an email from the ALC explaining how to book your place. If you have any queries please email for further information. If you intend to come to the dinner you will need to buy a ticket for that.

News from Wales

Newport City Council has approved a £12 million loan towards the redevelopment of a prominent building into offices and a hotel.

News from the Labour Party

Labour demands Theresa May reverse Toby Young appointment due to his 'misogyny and homophobia'.

Rail fare rises under Tories are ‘truly staggering’ – Andy McDonald MP.

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council have once again failed those that they have a duty to support - Andrew Gwynne MP.

Councils forced to spend valuable resources tackling effects of Universal Credit.

Sadiq Khan reveals London's one-hour 'bus hopper' ticket is to go unlimited this month.

National news

Jeremy Hunt has apologised to patients whose operations were cancelled after hospitals reported extraordinary winter pressures.

Trials to make people show identification before they can vote could unfairly affect older people who are less likely to possess photo ID or have access to other documents, the Labour party and charities have warned.

Tory members 'a breed apart' from other main parties, study finds.

‘I’ll eat you alive’ - Angela Rayner interview in The Spectator.

Christchurch Council is to ask the Government to stop plans to merge all the county's councils into two single authorities.

The Government has been urged to give £38 million to the Metropolitan Police to help pay for the investigation into the Grenfell Tower fire.

Karen Buck MP is introducing a private members bill that would give tenants living in unfit housing the power to take action against the landlord to make them put right any hazards that make the property unfit, and seek compensation when the landlord hasn’t done so. Karen is asking people to show their support by signing her petition.

News from the LGA

LGA responds to CRIDE and National Deaf Children's Society report on specialist support

LGA responds to disposable coffee cup report

LGA on farming subsidies: local areas also need clarity on EU regional aid funding post Brexit

NHS winter crisis should prompt government to fully fund social care, warn councils


London Collaborative Leadership Masterclass
Friday, 19 January 2018 10.00-17.00   
18 Smith Square, London

This highly engaging one-day masterclass will help councillors make the most of the new partnership landscape. Councillors attending the masterclass will learn what makes for successful partnerships and how to structure conversations that build trust, establish common purpose and address how partners can work together in new ways. This masterclass is open to all councillors and will be particularly useful for those who have a leadership role where partnership building is crucial.

This masterclass is free. Please contact Grace Collins to book a place

The Smith Institute

Launch of new report: “Out of Contract: time to move on from the ‘love in’ with outsourcing and PFI”.  

The first in an occasional series of Smith Institute seminars planned for 2018: 'What Needs to Change'.

Committee Room 16, House of Commons, Monday 22nd January from 5 to 6.30pm with authors David Walker and John Tizard.

Panel responses from:

  • Jon Trickett MP, Shadow Cabinet Secretary (confirmed)
  • Christina McAnea, Assistant General Secretary UNISON (confirmed) 
  • Cllr Clare Coghill, Leader Waltham Forest Council and Executive Member, Association of Labour Councils (TBC)

Contracting out is shrouded in secrecy and there is little public scrutiny over the multi-billion pound deals that these large, often global, private companies have struck with Whitehall, local government and government agencies. Despite the lack of oversight, outsourcing and PFI contracts have become part of the DNA of government. But, how effective has it been for the public sector and service users; has it really delivered the promised savings and improvements in service delivery; and what have been the social costs and impacts on staff?  

According to Walker and Tizard the state is not getting a fair deal. They acknowledge the costs and complexities of rescinding contracts, but make the case for a root and branch review and tighter regulations, with a preference for in-house and not-for-profit provision.

We are delighted that Jon Trickett MP, the Shadow Cabinet Secretary who is leading Labour’s preparations for Government, has confirmed that he will join Christina McAnea, Assistant General Secretary at UNISON, in responding to the report. We have also invited Cllr Clare Coghill, Leader of Waltham Forest Council to join the panel.

To book your free place please register.

UK Power Network’s first Local Government Forum

UK Power Networks are inviting Labour councillors to attend their first Local Government Forum, at which they will be discussing Community Energy, Electric Vehicle Charging, Fuel Poverty and Protecting Vulnerable Residents. They are keen to hear views from all local councillors, about the energy opportunities and challenges in their local area

10.00am – 4pm on Thursday 11th January 2018
Central Hall Westminster, Storey's Gate, London SW1H 9NH

Free entry for councillors, including complimentary breakfast and lunch. To book your place please register here, and if you have any questions, please contact Tom Martin on 020 7566 6463.  

Opposition Watch

Windsor council leader calls for removal of homeless before royal wedding.

Tory MP couple nickname their baby 'Brexit Clifford'.

A former Ukip Councillor, Stephen Searle, has been charged with the murder of his wife Anne, 62, at their home in Stowmarket, Suffolk.

Anger as Tory MP claims children from Lambeth more likely to go to prison than university.

The Tory cabinet reshuffle descended into chaos after the Tories announce wrong person as party chairman.


By-election results from 4 January 2018

Hertsmere BC, Borehamwood Cowley

Lab 709 [59.8%; +3.4%]
Con 381 [32.2%; -11.5%]
UKIP 57 [4.8%; +4.8%]
LD 20 [1.7%; +1.7%]
Green 18 [1.5%; +1.5%]
Labour gain from Conservatives

By-elections taking place on 11 January 2018

Kent CC, Birchington & Rural
Lancashire CC, Wyre Rural Central
Thanet DC, Thanet Villages
Wyre BC, Preesall – 11th January 2018