News from the Leader of the LGA Labour Group – 24 July 2018

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24 July 2018

Nick Forbes

News from the Leader of the LGA Labour Group

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Cllr Nick Forbes
Leader of the LGA Labour Group

*Last Call* Next Generation Programme 2018/19

The Next Generation Programme for 2018-19 is now open for applications. The programme offers ambitious and talented councillors an unparalleled political development opportunity, uniquely developed within party political traditions and with party political experts. Next Generation aims to support and encourage councillors to be bold and confident political leaders, progress in your political career and be champions of local government.

To apply to be part of the Next Generation you will need to have been a councillor for at least one year as well as be a Group Leader, Portfolio Shadow, Chair of Scrutiny, Portfolio Holder or Service Committee Chair – or your Group Leader agrees that you are likely to be so within a year.There is a competitive application process, which closes on Tuesday 31 July 2018. You will need sign off from your Group Leader to apply. The programme will run over the weekends of, 20/21 October (London) 1/2/ December (Warwick) and 19/20 January 2019 (Manchester). Participants must attend all of the three weekends.

There is no cost to attend the programme. All meals and accommodation will be provided including pre-night accommodation where required. However attendees must cover their own travel costs. If you would like further information about the programme, please email Martin Angus.  

To apply please complete the online application process no later than Tuesday 31 July 2018.

Labour councils working with Trade Unions

The LGA Labour Group formally adopted the ‘Labour Local Government and Trade Union Principles’ document at our AGM in July.

The agreement is designed to help establish and strengthen the dialogue between Labour council leaders and councillors and local staff trade unions.

It sets out the standards which the LGA Labour Group believe should be met by Labour councils in their relationships with the unions and their policies, and covers austerity, good industrial relations, exemplary employment practice, the LGPS, promoting equality and in-house services, opposing academisation, and the Trade Union Act. 

News from Local Labour

Bradford Metropolitan District Council joins list of Labour Councils to adopt IHRA definition of anti-Semitism.

Birmingham City Council has built 3000 homes through the Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust since 2010.

Stevenage Borough Council’s domestic abuse service won the national Tenant Participation Advisory Service Award for ‘Excellence in Community Action’.

Sheffield City Council parks and woodlands awarded national acclaim.

Liverpool City Council has passed a motion in support of a People’s Vote on Brexit; the Leader of the London Borough of Camden, Georgia Gould, and almost half of Labour Councillors on Oxford City Council have also this week declared their support for a People’s Vote.

Labour Councillors on Gedling Borough Council lead vote against plan to turn Nottinghamshire into a Unitary Authority

Communities Secretary, James Brokenshire MP, proposes to remove commissioners from Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council after three-year intervention.

Job vacancy: Executive Assistant to the Leader of the Opposition at Westminster City Council.

News from the Labour Party

John McDonnell MP responds to ONS public sector finance figures.

Louise Haigh MP - New figures expose police underfunding.

News from Wales

The first council-owned energy company could be established in Wales following the Swansea Council’s latest proposals.

Record number of Green Flags announced for Cardiff Council.

Opposition watch

Julian Smith, the Conservative chief whip, is facing calls to resign following reports he told MPs to defy pairing arrangements for Brexit vote.

Tenth councillor to quit North Norfolk District Council Conservatives in just over 18 months.

The LGA Cyber Security Stocktake has now launched

As part of the National Cyber Security Strategy, the LGA has been granted funding by the Cabinet Office to ensure that councils are as resilient against cyber-attacks as possible.

The first phase of this work has now begun. Working with the not-for-profit research organisation RAND Europe, the LGA has now sent a confidential online questionnaire to all councils in England to complete concerning their cyber security arrangements.

This aims to:

  • capture the current state of play in terms of cyber security across councils
  • identify good practice – and those councils delivering it
  • identify risks – and those councils at risk.

Findings from this work will inform where and how the LGA targets support including funding to individual councils. From the Autumn, councils will be able to bid for grant funding to undertake an agreed activity or piece of work which will improve their cyber security, based on the findings from the stocktake. Details on how to bid for this will follow later on this year.

Please make sure your council takes part. If your council nominated a lead contact, the questionnaire will now have been sent to them, if not, it will land in the inbox of the council’s Chief Executive. Councils have until 31st August to complete this.

Find out more about the stocktake here. Or send any questions to:


There were six by-elections on 19 July 2018:

Oxford UA, Headington
LD 949 [62.6%; +1.4%]
Lab 419 [27.7%; +0.6%]
Con 80 [5.3%; -1.0%]
Green 67 [4.4; -1.0%]
LD hold 

West Lancashire BC, Hesketh-with Becconsall
Con 510 [41.3%; -18.5%]
Lab 431 [34.9%; +3.9%]
Ind 295 [23.9%; +23.9%]
[LD 0 [0.0%; -9.3%]]
Conservative hold 

Carmarthenshire UA, Saron
Plaid Cymru 747 [65.2%; +15.7%]
Lab 239 [20.9%; -15.0%]
Con 146 [12.7%; -1.9%]
LD 14 [1.2%; +1.2%]
Plaid Cymru hold 

Bury MB, Besses
Lab 999 [51.1%; -8.6%]
Con 708 [36.2%; +13.0%]
Eng Dem 72 [3.7%;-3.4%]
LD 71 [3.6%; -1.3%]
Green 55 [2.8%; -2.2%]
UKIP 49 [2.5%; +2.5%]
Labour hold 

Northamptonshire CC, St George
Lab 839 [44.6%; +4.3%]
LD 564 [30.0%; +0.1%]
Con 285 [15.1%; -7.2%]
UKIP 111 [5.9%; -1.6%]
Green 83 [4.4%; +4.4%]
Labour hold 

Milton Keynes UA, Bletchley East
Lab 1355 [50.9%; +3.1%]
Con 1026 [38.5; -0.7%]
Green 131 [4.9%; -3.1%]
UKIP 101 [3.8%; +3.8%]
LD 50 [1.9%; -3.1%]
Labour hold

By-elections taking place on 26 July 2018:

New Forest DC, Fawley, Blackfield & Langley
Plymouth UA, Stoke
West Lancashire BC, Knowsley
North East Lincolnshire UA, Freshney
Merthyr Tydfil UA, Gurnos
Thanet DC, Birchington South
Torridge DC, Hartland & Bradworthy