News from the Leader of the LGA Labour Group – 4 December 2018

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4 December 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

News from Local Labour

Sheffield City Council have won a national award for their work to help improve the experiences of children in care.

The London Borough of Enfield continues to lead the way in saving money, energy and carbon.

A new £300m vision to develop Exeter city centre has been revealed by Exeter City Council.

Leicester City Council is aiming to make more affordable homes available in the city by purchasing around 50 properties to let to families on the housing register.

Gateshead Council is supporting a regional campaign to boost jobs in adult social care.

Cllr Bryony Rudkin, Deputy Leader of Ipswich Borough Council has written about her participation in the World Forum for Democraccy in Strasbourg.

Labour Local Government Conference 2019 – reserve your place now

We are now taking bookings for the Labour Local Government Conference 2019.

Run jointly by the Association of Labour Councillors (ALC) and the LGA Labour Group, the event is an opportunity for us to meet and discuss a range of policies and campaigns relevant to local government.  In addition to keynote speakers and plenary sessions there will be a series of policy and campaigning workshops. As well as speakers from across local government, Rt Hon Jeremy Corbyn MP, is confirmed to speak and other members of the front bench team will be invited.

The details are:

Friday 8 February 2019, 19.30 – 22.30
Drinks reception and dinner

Saturday 9 February 2019, 09.00 – 17.00
Local Government Conference

The conference will be held at The Slate, Warwick Conferences, Gibbet Hill Road, Coventry, CV4 7AL. The closest station is Coventry in addition there is plenty of parking at the venue.

To book your attendance, please visit our dedicated conference booking page.


We have a number of rooms on hold at Radcliffe House adjacent to the conference venue, which are available on a first come first served basis for the night of Friday 8 February.  To book your accommodation please do so on Warwick Conferences dedicated conference accommodation webpage Double bedded rooms for single occupancy are at the following cost: Bed and breakfast, single is £81.60 inclusive of VAT.  This webpage can be found in the useful info tab of the conference booking page. Rooms not booked by Monday 7 January 2019 will be released.

If you are a new councillor, (i.e. elected for the first time in May 2018 or since in a by-election) you are entitled to a free conference pass and you will receive 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

A new Welsh Medium school has opened in Cardiff, supported by Cardiff Council and the Welsh Government.

A charity football match hosted by Torfaen Council took place to raise money for White Ribbon Day and local women’s charities.

News from the Labour Party

Lou Haigh MP responded to the news that police are having to support people with mental health problems

Jeremy Corbyn MP has written to the PM warning her about the consequences of the scale of poverty in the country.

Angela Rayner MP responded to the news that low-income families are struggling to access the 30 hour free childcare offer.

The government has funded the building of only 307 homes for social rent in the last six months – John Healey MP responds.

Carolyn Harris MP has commented on the news that County Lines are worth over £3 million a day.

Labour council leaders have written to the Communities Secretary James Brokenshire to appeal for a cash injection in the upcoming local government finance settlement.

News from the LGA

LGA responds to RSPCA call for more council funding

10,000 affordable homes potentially lost through office conversions

LGA responds to LGSCO annual review of social care complaints

LGA responds to combustible materials ban

Blue Badge thefts up six fold in five years

LGA responds to Public Health England HIV report

LGA responds to ONS report on excess winter deaths

FGM concerns in social work assessments doubles councils reveal

180 operations a day to remove rotten teeth from children

LGA responds to a new fund for prospective Labour councillors

Opposition watch

UKIP Leader Gerard Batten has survived a no confidence vote

Another Tory minister has resigned, saying that another referendum may be the only option

Labour's Planning Commission

Labour’s Planning Commission has opened its call for evidence and councillors are encouraged to make submissions. All the details can be found on the Planning Commission website:

“Youth Services at Breaking Point” – new report by Unison

On Monday 3rd December, Unison launched a new report looking at the impact of cuts on youth services. One of the key findings of the report is that since 2012, over 4,500 youth worker posts have been lost, and over 760 youth centres have closed. You can read the press release and report here.

Supportive Council Tax recovery event – Money Advice Service

The Money Advice Service will soon be launching a new resource:  'Supportive Council Tax Recovery' – strategic guidance to support Local Authority collaboration with debt advice agencies’.  Council Tax debt is now the most common reason people seek debt advice. While the volumes seeking advice is on an upward trend, there has also been an unintended rise in debt enforcement activity from some Local Authorities. As a result, working with revenues professionals and debt advice agencies we have prioritised work to influence more consistent Local Authority collaboration with the debt advice sector when recovering Council Tax debt.


Tuesday 4th December 2018, 3.30-5pm
One Great George Street, London, SW1P 3AA

We'll hear from the authors of the resource alongside Yvonne Favargue MP and some of the councils leading the way as we shine a light on good practices within the sector and look at how to influence more consistent Local Authority support for those with Council Tax debt.

By elections

By-elections held on 29 November:

Oldham MB, Failsworth East
Lab 677 [58.5%; -7.2%]
Con 336 [29.0%; +5.3%]
Ind 94 [8.1%; +8.1%]
UKIP 32 [2.8%; +2.8%]
LD 18 [1.6%;-1.3%]
[Green 0 [0.0; -7.7%]]
Labour hold

Warwickshire CC, Stratford North
LD 877 [40.7%; +16.5%]
Con 610 [28.3%; -0.2%]
Stratford First Independents 345 [16.0%; -17.1%]
Lab 180 [8.3%; -0.9%]
Green 144 [6.7%; +1.6%]
Lib Dem gain

Welwyn Hatfield BC, Welwyn West
Con 960 [58.7%; +6.8%]
LD 604 [36.9%; +36.9%]
Lab 72 [4.4%; -5.0%]
[Ind [0.0%; -38.7%]]Con Hold

Oxfordshire CC, Wheatley
LD 1380 [61.0%; +15.8%]
Con 705 [31.2%; -11.8%]
Lab 178 [7.9%; -4.0%]
Lib Dem Hold

Bromley LB, Kelsey & Eden Park
Con 1626 [45.2%; +0.8%]
Lab 1046 [29.1%; +1.7%]
LD 633 [17.6%; +2.7%]
UKIP 219 [6.1%; +2.4%]
Green 73 [2.0%; -7.6%]
Con Hold

Buckinghamshire CC, Aylesbury North West
LD 654 [39.3%; +9.5%]
Con 507 [30.5%; +5.9%]
Lab 426 [25.6%; +2.9%]
Green 77 [4.6%; +1.4%]
[UKIP 0 [0.0%; -19.7%]]
Lib Dem hold

Northampton BC, Delapre & Briar Hill
Lab 914 [43.4; +15.6%]
Con 549 [26.0%; +1.3%]
Ind 417 [19.8; +13.0%]
LD 133 [6.3%; -10.4%]
Green 95 [4.5%; +4.5%]
[BNP 0 [0.0%; -3.9]]
[UKIP 0 [0.0%; -20.0]]
Lab hold


By-elections on 6 December:

Highland UA, Wester Ross, Strathpeffer & Lochalsh

Leicester UA, Belgrave

Oxford BC, Wolvercote

Surrey CC, The Byfleets