Group bulletin: 28 July 2023

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local government association - independent group

Group bulletin

28 July 2023


Greetings colleagues! 

With fires raging across Greece and increasing weather extremes, we are putting more into helping our councils reduce our impact on the environment and mitigate for the impacts. If you or your council has got good ideas not already submitted, please put them forward now and email the Group Office. We want to have a host of good examples from the Independent Group councillors and councils!  

The other big issue we are asked to comment on is Asylum seekers, so perhaps you could let us have a comment or two on that too? It is important to raise the profile of our members on key items hitting the news. 

Last week, the office sent out a survey ahead of our Independent Group autumn conference. We are keen to hear from you about what should be included in the programme, what types of speakers should be invited, where the conference should be held as well as how long should the conference last. Please take some to fill out the survey, it does not take long and we welcome any other ideas and/or suggestions you might have for conference, especially in regards to attracting outside sponsors.  

As part of our commitment to further increase engagement, networking and best practice the LGA Independent Group will be hosting a weekender for our Executive members, Peers and Board Leads. It will be a fantastic opportunity to hear the excellent work everyone is doing and to give some of our leading members the due credit they deserve. Again, if you have any ideas or suggestions for this event, please do contact the Group Office. 

More importantly, have you ever thought about becoming a member peer? Our member peers are accredited to support councils and their councillors with their sector improvement and learning by providing a ‘practitioner perspective’ and ‘critical friend’ challenge. For more information about the role, please contact the Group Office. 

And finally, as it is the Disability Pride Month, it is vitally important that we encourage more disabled people to stand for public office because we value diversity and everybody matters. The LGA offers a range of useful resources and supports the Disabled Councillors Leadership Programme as well as hosts one-to-one coaching for disabled councillors.  

The UK-France Local Government Forum is seeking a UK host town or city for the third, 2024 event. The UK Government will provide financial support to the host, with the aim of covering as much of the costs as reasonable. To apply, go to the forum website and submit your answers to the questions advertised by 31st August. 

Don’t forget to consult our online hub for newly elected councillors where you can stay up-to-date with upcoming events and information sessions which will help you in your roles. Events coming up will include scrutiny and handling casework. 

This is a series of programmes and workshops designed as themed learning opportunities for councillors. Each event concentrates on a specific portfolio or service area or a specific theme. Please do check out what is on offer and for any further questions or queries, please email Grace Collins. 

Our ‘Focus on leadership’ councillor development events are designed to support councillors to excel in their existing roles and to provide them with a bridge to senior leadership positions. We host ‘Focus on Leadership’ weekender events for the followings groups: BAME, LGBTQ+, opposition leaders and deputy leaders as well as young councillors (aged 40 and under). To register for, or find out more about, any of our ‘Focus on Leadership’ events, please contact Grace Collins 

LGA Annual Conference 2023: feedback  

Thanks to all those who attended the LGA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2023 in Bournemouth. Please complete our very quick feedback form before Friday 28 July. Alternatively, feel free to email your feedback to 

Digital imprints regimes  

The Government has written to the LGA to announce that the digital imprints in campaign materials guidance has been laid in Parliament. It sets out the Government’s view, that councillors can use their council address in their digital imprint. The LGA is gathering views on the implications of this clarification, please contact to contribute. 

Social Care Funding

£600 million will be allocated over the next two years to boost capacity in the workforce and funding for the sector, however, it falls well short of what is needed from councils to effectively deliver their Care Act duties.

Some dates for the diary!


Finance without numbers – An introduction to local government finance (daytime session) (virtual event) 
Thursday 14 September 2023, 2.00pm – 3.30pm  

Plan making system reforms 2023: Consultation Launch Webinar
3rd August, 10am

On 25 July 2023 the Government published a consultation on proposals to make local plans (and minerals and waste plans) simpler, faster to prepare, and more accessible. The consultation is open until 18 October 2023. Join the Planning Advisory Service for a webinar on 3rd August with officials from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) to learn more about the consultation.  


 Have a good weekend! 

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