Weekly COVID-19 supply chain bulletin: 29 October 2021

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Weekly COVID-19 supply chain bulletin

29 October 2021

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Welcome to the merged National Advisory Group (NAG) and SOPO (Society of Procurement Officers in Local Government) e-bulletin. Feel free to forward this email to your colleagues and / or suggest they sign up to receive it themselves.
This e-bulletin is now delivered through our corporate service which handles all of our e-bulletins and through which you can create or manage your subscriptions and read previous editions of this e-bulletin

COVID-19 stories

Consultation on personal protective equipment (PPE)

As a result of COVID-19, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) currently supports the procurement of personal protective equipment (PPE) requirements to over 50,000 primary care and social care providers free of charge. This provision is due to end on 1 April 2022, however expectations are that PPE usage will remain beyond March 2022. DHSC is therefore considering an extension to this free, central provision. To help inform the DHSC’s decision on the provision of PPE, please complete their survey by 31 October.

Non-COVID stories

Spending Review and Autumn Budget

The Chancellor delivered his three-year Spending Review and Autumn Budget. Our on-the-day briefing included our analysis of the Government’s spending plans, which included new Government grant funding of £1.6 billion per annum for councils over the next three years (totalling £4.8 billion over the period) to support vital local services, money for school places, transport infrastructure, and housing, as well as the release of the first £1.7 billion of the Levelling Up Fund.

Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) interim report into children's social care provision

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published an interim report as part of its market study into children’s social care provision, outlining significant concerns about the availability of placements and the profits of private providers. The initial findings are the result of a market study launched in March of this year. The LGA will be responding to the findings of the interim report but the CMA welcomes feedback from interested parties by 12 November. Please email children@cma.gov.uk to submit your response.
Find out more about the Children’s social care study

Social work renewal

All social workers who wish to continue practising must apply to renew their registration with Social Work England and record their continuing professional development by 30 November. Please encourage your staff to renew their registration now.


The Sourcing Playbook – free webinar training for local government

Local Partnerships, working in conjunction with the LGA, Cabinet Office and DLUHC, have developed a series of webinars designed specifically to help the local government community better understand The Sourcing Playbook and maximise its use for major projects. These webinars are designed so that individuals can either attend all the sessions, or just some. We welcome attendance from other officers in your council, depending upon their specific areas of interest and responsibility.

The webinars will take place for around an hour on Tuesday lunchtimes between 23 November 2021 and 25 January 2022 (breaking for Christmas) and will cover the following topics:

For further information please email productivity@local.gov.uk

Climate change – COP26

Electric vehicle charging infrastructure

On behalf of the Office of Zero Emission Vehicles, the Institute of Engineering and Technology has produced a draft 'Electric vehicle charging infrastructure guide for local authorities' for final consultation. This new guidance aims to provide a single point of reference to authorities across the UK to assist them with electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure implementation, and covers the fundamentals of EV charging infrastructure, opportunities and challenges, site identification and selection, preparation work required, deployment advice, operational considerations and advice on community engagement. Deadline for comments is 15 November.

Trees Call to Action Fund

The Heritage Fund is opening a new £6 million Trees Call to Action Fund (TCAF) in early November on behalf of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and in partnership with the Forestry Commission. The TCAF will support the England Trees Action Plan at regional and national scale; and will be open to applications from partnerships led by councils, areas of outstanding natural beauty and national park authorities, environmental charities and not-for-profit organisations. Grants available range from £250,000 to £500,000 and will cover capital and revenue costs. Projects will have up to three years to be delivered and will need to be completed by March 2025. A webinar will be held shortly after the fund opens to answer any questions. The Heritage Fund's website will provide more information shortly.

Biodiversity e-learning for councils

The LGA have produced a new e-learning module on biodiversity aimed at councillors and council officers. The module provides an introduction to the subject, as well as providing tips and guidance on how councils can take action to protect their natural habitats. You can complete the module on our e-learning platform


Pass the Planet: showcasing local climate action on the COP26 goals | Tuesday 9 November

In the run-up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), we are showcasing best practice from councils through our Pass the Planet campaign. At this webinar, four councils will present their own best practice, each linking with one of the four COP26 goals: mitigation, adaptation, collaboration and finance.

2021 National Social Value Conference: Wales – 'Leading the Movement' | Tuesday 16 and Wednesday 17 November

The National Social Value Conference: Wales returns this year from Saturday 16 to Sunday 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. Register now for this free event

Public sector sustainability: strategies for reaching net zero | Wednesday 17 November

Crown Commercial Service, in partnership with SUSTx, will be hosting an all-day online event that brings together sustainability experts to share knowledge and practical solutions on how to respond to the net zero challenges we face as public sector organisations. This event provides a unique opportunity to learn from some of the key players and take away actionable insights.

Tech essentials: connected places and the future of the public sector | Thursday 25 November

The LGA, along with partners from central government and local councils, will be hosting this online webinar to promote awareness around connected places. The event will illustrate the importance of security practices that are needed to design, build and manage innovative connectivity and technology in local areas.

Digitech21: the technology and procurement summit for the public sector | Thursday 9 December

During this round table discussion, Crown Commercial Service wants to hear your news (good and bad) – to talk about the current challenges you face, how you feel about your role as public sector buyers in the future, and the direction of the procurement landscape. Good practice, issues and challenges being faced, networks being formed, and hot topics for the future, will inform the agenda and shape the ‘digital buying community of practice’ in the year ahead.


The LGA Procurement team manages several LGA webpages dedicated to your needs. Please email guy.head@local.gov.uk if you would like any information added to our webpages: