Group bulletin: 14 November 2022

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local government association - independent group

Group bulletin

14 November 2022


Dear Friends and Colleagues,

Hope you are well and gearing up with good candidates for the next big elections. Let us know if we can help.

By-election success

Congratulations to Yvonne Tracey who was elected on Thursday to Kingston Council in the Green Lane and St James by-election! Our members are winning more and more elections just now. Councillor Tracey won 855 votes ahead of Mahmood Rafiq of the Liberal Democrats who claimed 647. She will join fellow KIRG Councillor James Giles, who is on our Executive Team, in representing Green Lane and St James Ward. Welcome to Councillor Tracey from the LGA Independent Group and we look forward to working together.

Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday

I know, last week, our Councillors paid tribute to those who served our country, remembering lives past, those lost and those in peril today. We continue to support the ‘Armed Forces Covenant’, ensuring those who serve or who have served in the Armed Forces, and their families, are treated fairly.

UK Veterans get their say

The government has launched the first ever UK-wide survey, for veterans and their families. The Veterans’ Survey is being carried out by the Office for Veterans’ Affairs (OVA) and the Office for National Statistics (ONS). It aims to learn more about the lives of the UK Armed Forces community, veterans and their families. Find out all about the survey, who can take part and what to expect. Please do send the survey link to those interested in contributing.

LGA Member Peer Conference – November 2022

Huge thanks to the eighteen peers from our group who attended the cross-party peer conference last week in Sheffield. We had a significant presence; knowledgeable, vibrant and effective in our questions, comments and presentations. I was very proud and exhilarated to lead such a great team, thank you. Thank you to Mike Haines, our Lead Peer, to our regional peers and to all our peers. A warm welcome to Linda Gilham, taking on the role for the South-east.

The session on civility and the Debate not hate campaign was lively and very useful. As Co-Chair of our cross-party task group, I also chaired this one.  We were glad to have the key LGA officers presenting the results of the councillor survey and working on the Toolkit, out shortly. 7 out of 10 councillors have experienced bullying or intimidation which undermines democracy, discouraging people from speaking up, doing as much and from standing. Uncivil behaviour has no place in democracy and has got to stop.

International Framework: Good Governance in the Public Sector

How do we know that our Council is managing correctly with good governance? At the Grenfell Inquiry, councillors were asked “Did you know about this Governance Advice?”  The framework is for all public sector entities but also provides a resource for the public to challenge substandard governance in public sector bodies.

It doesn’t replace other codes, but provides a useful rundown of all the things that should be in place and working, in that people understand and follow the principles. The framework was developed jointly by CIPFA and the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC). 

Pass the Planet 

The LGA has launched our refreshed ‘Pass the Planet’ campaign, which will be running throughout COP27. The campaign will promote the great practice, projects and provision councils from across England are delivering to address climate change. It aims to support universal learning, enable councils to share the innovative solutions and ultimately help other councils to understand how they can meet their own climate change ambitions. 

Councils can continue to send case studies of their work to which will be featured on our climate change hub and in our case studies section

Calling London Councillors!

London Councils is running a series of online lunchtime events exclusively for councillors, keeping you up-to-date and informed on a broad range of issues that affect Londoners. Upcoming London in Brief online events include:

  • Violence Against Women and Girls
  • London: Responding to the Climate Emergency
  • An introduction to Local Government Finance
  • Responding to refugee arrivals and asylum seekers and the London Asylum Dispersal Plan
  • An introduction to Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)
  • The opportunities afforded by film and TV for London’s boroughs

You can find out more and register your attendance via the link here: Register for London in Brief online briefings | London Councils

Gathering support for elections in May 2023

Some of you will have attended the workshop on elections at our LGA Independent Annual conference, run by Nigel Jacklin of the Democratic Network.  To help find your voters and possible helpers, he has designed a questionnaire for us. If you share it on your networks, it will find supporters and helpers for you in your area which will be pointed to you as their councillor. Please take part (using the link below) and get involved in the May 2023 local elections


Neighbourhood approach to decarbonising heat, building and transport

Tuesday 15 November, 10:30am – 12:00pm 

During the second week of the COP27 conference, the LGA will be presenting findings from our policy project on investigating, capturing, and presenting approaches to ‘whole-place’ street /neighbourhood decarbonisation. The webinar will be chaired by Councillor David Renard, Leader of Swindon Borough Council and Chair of the LGA’s Environment, Economy, Housing and Transport board with presentations from DG Cities, South Cambridgeshire District Council and Doncaster City Council. You can book by clicking on the link here: Local Government Association

Regional Retrofit Action Planning

Tuesday 6 December 2022, 10.00am - 11.30am 

The UK’s housing stock will need to be carbon neutral by 2050. Councils are working hard to make their own housing stock more energy efficient, whilst building retrofit skills in the community to strengthen local supply chains. This webinar will share good practice examples from experts and councils who are creating local green jobs in the area of housing retrofit. You can book by clicking on the link here: Local Government Association

Decarbonising Transport

Tuesday 24 January 2023, 10.00am - 11.30am 

Transport is now the biggest emitter of carbon of any sector in the UK. If we are to reach our target of net zero emissions by 2050 or sooner, we will need a fundamental transformation of the ways we move. This webinar will share good practice examples from experts and councils who are developing and delivering decarbonising transport strategies and provision. You can book by clicking on the link here: Local Government Association

Councillor Marianne Overton MBE signature

Councillor Marianne Overton MBE
Leader of the Independent Group
Vice Chair of the Local Government Association

Portrait photo of Councillor Marianne Overton, Leader of the LGA Independent Group