Weekly COVID-19 Supply Chain Bulletin: 9 July 2021

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Weekly COVID-19 Supply Chain Bulletin

Weekly Supply Chain bulletin header

9 July 2021

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Welcome to the NAG newsletter for 9 July 2021. Feel free to circulate to your colleagues.

This newsletter is now delivered through our corporate service that handles all our various e-bulletins. Manage or create a subscription - or read previous bulletins.

COVID stories

COVID Local Support Grant extension 

The Government has published guidance for councils on the COVID Local Support Grant (CLSG) funding extension to support vulnerable households in England. The CLSG, previously the COVID Winter Grant Scheme (CWGS), is a temporary scheme set up by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) which is being extended from 21 June to 30 September 2021. The scheme funds county councils and unitary authorities (including metropolitan councils and London boroughs) to provide direct assistance to support families with children and other vulnerable households and individuals who are most in need as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

Personal protective equipment – resource for care workers delivering domiciliary care

Public Health England has published new guidance on PPE for care workers delivering domiciliary care.

Non-COVID stories

Building Safety Bill

The Government has published the Building Safety Bill which aims to set out a clear pathway for how residential buildings should be constructed and maintained. Introducing the legislation to Parliament the Secretary of State said this was the next key step in an extensive overhaul to building safety legislation, giving residents more power to hold builders and developers to account with toughened sanctions against those who threaten their safety. The Bill includes details of a Building Safety Regulator to oversee the new regime and will be responsible for ensuring that any building safety risks in new and existing high rise residential buildings of 18 metres and above are effectively managed and resolved, whilst taking cost into account.

Increase in B&B spending

The LGA released new analysis showing that councils are spending over five times as much money as they were a decade ago on placing people who are homeless into bed and breakfasts due to a severe shortage of housing. Latest figures show councils in England spent £142 million on bed and breakfast accommodation in 2019/20, compared with £26.7 million in 2010/11. We said councils only use bed and breakfasts as a last resort, and that it is hugely disruptive to families with children. Giving councils the powers to build council housing on the scale required would go a significant way towards reducing homelessness and the need to place households in bed and breakfasts.

Business continuity planning and template plan for adult social care providers – updated June 2021

The Care Provider Alliance (CPA) has updated their business continuity planning guidance and related template plan for adult social care providers. This now includes additional information on planning for power outages, data breaches and cyber-attacks. Local authorities are encouraged to share the guidance and template with their care providers and work them to improve business continuity planning.

Training & Development

Contract management e-learning

Following previous information on the free e-learning available to councils through the Government Commercial College we’ve been looking through the hundreds of local government people who have already taken up the offer and have either completed the e-learning or are in progress. We've had some great feedback on the e-learning too. If you haven’t registered yet there is still time. Head over to the Government Commercial College to sign up.

CIPS applied learning route to MCIPS

The Chartered Institue of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) is currently taking applications for its online applied learning programme - successful completion delivers full Member of the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (MCIPS) status. An alternative to the examination route, participants are assessed via assignment and project work and the entire content is delivered virtually. The two programmes cover the syllabus for CIPS level 4 (Practitioner) and levels 5 and 6 (Advanced Practitioner). Assessment is via assignments and a project at Advanced Practitioner level Due to high demand, if you feel this route to your professional accreditation MCIPS is right for you, then please do not hesitate in emailing anita.hicks@cips.org


Government promises to reduce competitive grant bidding

The government is set to reduce the amount of funding pots allocated to councils through competitive bidding, the Communities Secretary has promised. In a speech to the Local Government Association annual virtual conference the Communities Secretary signalled that it was listening to the sector on the burdens involved: “ We appreciate that these funds bring challenges to local councils and we want to ensure there are fewer competitions in the future, more consolidated opportunities to access government funding.”

Bus funding

The Buses Minister, Baroness Vere, has today written to all bus operators and local transport authorities giving formal notification of the eight-week period for the Coronavirus Bus Service Support Grant (CBSSG) and announcement of bus recovery funding. In recognition of the continued support that will be required for local bus services the Government is making available £226.5 million in bus recovery funding, which will be made available to the sector until the end of the current financial year. For a copy of the letter please contact kamal.panchal@local.gov.uk. 

Children’s services funding  

Speaking at the Association of Directors for Children’s Services conference, Children and Families Minister Vicky Ford announced a new £24 million fund for children’s social care, including funding to support unaccompanied minors. The new fund will support projects tackling the issues facing the most vulnerable children in society, including Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), care for unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, preventing adolescents from being caught up in harms outside the home such as gangs and reducing the pressure on the system by reducing court backlogs or improving technology. 

Nature for Climate Peatland Grant Scheme: Discovery Grants open 

Natural England has launched the first round of Discovery Grants, as part of the Nature for Climate Peatland Grant Scheme, to help support the development of new projects which seek to restore peatland systems to a natural and healthy state across the country. Through the scheme, the Government intends to invest over £50 million in peat restoration and has pledged to restore approximately 35,000 ha of peatland in England by the end of this Parliament. Accompanying the main Restoration Grants, the Discovery Grants are available for organisations to scope and develop sites for peatland restoration.

Webinar of the week

The role of Local Authorities in electric vehicle charging infrastructure

15 July 2021

This webinar will present the findings of recent LGA commissioned research into the role of Local Authorities in electric vehicle (EV) charging, focusing particularly on on-street provision, and will set out an overview of current activity and best practice, views of the sector, barriers and how these might be overcome and recommended next steps. 

The focus of the research is on the strategic role of local authorities in EV infrastructure delivery considering issues such as transition to net zero, the scale and pace of change, and expectations of the market


LGA Modern slavery webinar

14 July 2021

Modern slavery is a heinous crime which is sadly occurring in places up and down the country – the LGA is hosting a webinar aimed specifically at councillors but open to anyone looking for an introduction to the issue and councils' role in tackling it. The session will hear from the Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner Dame Sara Thornton, as well as from officers and groups directly involved in working to eradicate slavery. Please pass this on to the relevant councillors in your authorities.

Design in the Public Sector: Green procurement

16 July 2021

This is the third in a series of four webinars, run by the LGA in partnership with the Design Council, as part of the Design in the Public Sector’s Climate Change programme 2020-21. The webinar will showcase how design skills can be used to approach the everyday challenges we face and provide councils with a platform to share their insights and experiences of tackling climate challenges through green and sustainable procurement – with speakers discussing the procurement of sustainable timber in their Home Grown Homes projects, the carbon reducing impact of the electrification of their vehicle fleet, how a council has developed their own sustainable procurement strategy and the launch of the LGA’s Sustainable Procurement toolkit.

A local-national partnership to deliver low-carbon infrastructure

29 July 2021

The LGA commissioned WPI Economics to produce a business case for local delivery of low-carbon infrastructure and projects, identifying key areas from buildings and peatlands to green transport and sustainable energy production that councils can add significant value. You will hear the findings of this work and the economic, social and environmental benefits that could be realised across job creation, health and carbon emissions from a local path to net zero.

2021 National Social Value Conference: Wales - Leading the Movement 

6-17 November 2021

The 2021 National Social Value Conference: Wales returns this year, from 16-17 November. Last year, we saw a hugely successful two-day virtual conference, with over 800 delegates from across public bodies and anchor institutions in Wales.


The LGA Procurement team manages a number of webpages dedicated for your needs – please contact guy.head@local.gov.uk if you want anything uploaded to our webpages.