You can never be too diligent - the issue of know your client

Paul Feild considers the risk to local authorities posed by money laundering and the importance of carrying out due diligence properly in their transactions. Read more
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  NEWS

Oct 15, 2021

Watchdog hits out at four community councils in Wales over unlawful activity and poor governance arrangements

Urgent action is needed at four community councils in Wales to address unlawful expenditure and inadequate governance arrangements, the Auditor General for Wales has said in a series of reports in the public interest.
Oct 14, 2021

External auditors call on council mired in employment tribunal claims to commission report by independent monitoring officer

The external auditors to Thanet Council have urged the local authority in a report issued under Section 24 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 and identifying "key deficiencies" in governance processes to bring in an independent monitoring officer to carry out a risk assessment of the employment tribunal claims it faces and draw up an action plan.
Oct 13, 2021

Constitutional amendment that moved council meetings to working hours criticised

A decision which moved full council meetings at North Northamptonshire Council from 7pm to 2pm has been criticised as “anti-democratic” by detractors.
Oct 12, 2021

Croydon votes for directly-elected mayor

The London Borough of Croydon will have a directly elected mayor after a residents’ referendum found heavily in favour of changing its governance arrangements.
Oct 11, 2021

Laws passed by the Scottish Parliament struck down by Supreme Court justices

Supreme Court justices have struck down two laws passed by the Scottish Parliament after referrals were made by the Attorney General and the Advocate General for Scotland about their validity under devolution legislation.
Oct 07, 2021

£95,000 pay-off approved by Council leader, exceeding his authority

Pembrokeshire County Council’s leader exceeded his authority when he approved a £95,000 pay-off to the council’s former chief executive, a report by the authority's deputy monitoring officer has found.
Oct 07, 2021

Judicial review of government plan to create two unitary councils in Cumbria delayed by call-in

Cumbria County Council's judicial review bid of the secretary of state's decision to reorganise local government in the county has been delayed following a call-in from the local authority's scrutiny committee.
Oct 07, 2021

River bank site planning decision creates three-way row

A three-way row has erupted between Norfolk Constabulary, the Broads Authority and a council leader over a planning decision affecting a river bank site.
Oct 04, 2021

Thinktank sets out principles that should underpin Levelling Up White Paper

The LGiU thinktank has set out six principles that it believes should underpin the Government’s forthcoming Levelling Up White Paper.
Oct 04, 2021

Jackie Weaver and top comedians to hold “the ultimate council meeting” to mark Handforth anniversary

Jackie Weaver and a panel of comedians are to celebrate a year since the infamous Handforth Parish Council meeting went viral by forming “the ultimate council meeting” for a special live comedy event.
Oct 04, 2021

Liverpool names Fenwick as City Solicitor and Monitoring Officer

Liverpool City Council has appointed Daniel Fenwick, Director of Legal and Governance at the London Boroughs of Newham and Havering for the last six years, as its City Solicitor.
Oct 01, 2021

MPs call for devolution to become default option in England

Devolution in England must extend not only to combined authorities but to local government as a whole, and to rural as well as urban areas, the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has said.

  FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

August 19, 2021

Delivering 21st-century customer experience in the public sector

Rachel Buchanan examines how legal teams should support their authorities in delivering tailored services at a time of restrained resources.
July 02, 2021

State Aid and subsidy control post-Brexit: an update

What is the current position on State Aid and subsidy control in the UK, and what does the future hold for these areas of law following the consultations on the proposals in the two UK Green Papers? Tim Buley QC, Luke Wilcox and James Neill discuss.
June 25, 2021

General Power of Competence: what does this mean for Wales?

Neil Kates looks at the prospective introduction of the general power of competence for Welsh local authorities and community councils.
May 21, 2021

The Queen’s Speech and Judicial Review

Colin Ricciardiello looks at the likely effects of the government's proposed changes to the judicial review process.
May 14, 2021

Lessons on governance and finance from recent public interest reports

Dr Paul Feild looks at what can be learned from the recent Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 Schedule 7 Public Interest Reports relating to Croydon LBC and City of York.
May 13, 2021

Councils unable to hold meetings remotely from 7th May

Radhika Devesher considers the fallout from the High Court's decision that online council meetings cannot continue past 7th May and outlines the practical steps that councils can take to ensure that the decision-making process is not adversely affected.
April 29, 2021

Council meetings beyond 7 May 2021

What does the Divisional Court's ruling mean for local government? David Kitson, Victoria Barman and Mark Robinson look at what happens next.
April 23, 2021

Elections in the time of Covid-19

Rupert Beloff sets out some important considerations for Returning Officers and other election administrators as they look ahead to May's elections.
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  MORE NEWS

Sep 30, 2021

Discussions between Welsh Government and UK Government over future of justice in Wales to begin “shortly”: Counsel General

The Welsh Government expects discussions with the UK Government about the future of justice in Wales to begin shortly, Counsel General and Minister for the Constitution Mick Antoniw MS has said.
Sep 24, 2021

MPs criticise Cabinet Office for failing to enforce code for public appointments in relation to arm's length bodies

The Cabinet Office has “not been enforcing the code for public appointments” in relation to arm’s length bodies (ALBs), the Public Accounts Committee has warned.
Sep 23, 2021

District censures councillor after upholding complaints from senior officers and other councillors

Maldon District Council has warned a councillor who said he wanted to wear its censure letter to him as a hat.
Sep 23, 2021

Leader calls on Government to intervene in council over governance issues

Thanet District Council’s leader has taken the rare step of asking the Government to intervene to resolve its governance problems.
Sep 20, 2021

County mulls switch to Leader and Cabinet model, claiming it will “strengthen case for devolved powers”

Nottinghamshire County Council is to debate plans to return to a leader and cabinet model, having operated a committee-style model since 2021.
Sep 20, 2021

Prime Minister and Secretary of State launch ‘Levelling Up’ taskforce as beefed-up Ministry gets rebrand

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government is to become the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, the Government has announced.
Sep 17, 2021

Government to undertake review of ‘Retained EU law’, ensure courts have full ability to depart from EU case law "according to normal rules"

The Government is to conduct a review of ‘Retained EU law’, the legislation taken onto the statute book through the European Union (Withdrawal) Act of 2018, Lord Frost has announced.
Sep 17, 2021

Government to ditch ‘Supplementary Vote’ system for mayoral and PCC elections in favour of ‘First Past the Post’

The Government has unveiled measures to apply the ‘First Past the Post’ system to the election of council and ‘metro’ mayors across England, and to Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC) across England and Wales.
Sep 16, 2021

Council and minister criticise abuse at planning meeting

Camden Council has condemned disturbances at its planning committee last week when members of the public shouted obscenities at councillors.
Sep 16, 2021

Former Liverpool mayor loses bid for judicial review over arrest

Liverpool’s former Labour elected mayor Joe Anderson has lost a bid to judicially review Merseyside Police over his arrest last December.
Sep 15, 2021

Gove replaces Jenrick as Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government

The Communities Secretary, Robert Jenrick, and the Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland, have both been removed from their posts in today's Cabinet reshuffle, with Jenrick being replaced by Michael Gove and Buckland by former Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab.
Sep 13, 2021

Gender equality charity research finds 76% of councils still do not have maternity or paternity policies

Around three quarters of local councils still do not have maternity or paternity policies in place for their councillors, a gender equality campaigning charity has found.
Sep 08, 2021

Judicial review applications have continued to fall in first half of 2021: Ministry of Justice

The number of judicial review applications received in the first half of 2021 was – at 1,200 – down 16% on the same period in 2020, government data has revealed.
Aug 30, 2021

Cabinet Office Minister sets up review of Committee on Standards in Public Life

The Minister of the Cabinet Office, Michael Gove, has asked officials to review the membership and the remit of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, including in relation to its diversity.
Aug 26, 2021

Ombudsman raps council over handling of request for council tax relief during pandemic

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) has heavily criticised Cotswold District Council for the way it handled a man’s request for help paying his council tax during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Aug 24, 2021

Standards watchdog writes to minister amid concern over lack of diversity in its membership

The chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life has written to the Minister for the Cabinet Office, Michael Gove, after members of the watchdog “expressed concerns about our lack of visible diversity now as a group”.
Aug 17, 2021

Ministry issues best practice guidance on council tax collection

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has issued best practice for local authorities on council tax collection, including on how to make effective use of enforcement action.
Aug 09, 2021

Cumbria County Council warns Secretary of State of potential legal challenge over local government reorganisation

Cumbria County Council has issued a pre-action protocol letter to the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Robert Jenrick, warning of a potential legal challenge over his favoured proposal for local government reorganisation in the county.
Aug 03, 2021

High Court judge orders Liverpool City Council to reconsider refusal of indemnity for former elected mayor

A High Court judge has told Liverpool City Council to revisit whether it should grant an indemnity to its former elected mayor Joe Anderson to defend criminal allegations.
Jul 28, 2021

Ombudsman warns of “widening cracks” in local government complaint handling

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) upheld a greater proportion of investigations in 2020/21 than ever before, its annual review of complaints has revealed.
Jul 22, 2021

Secretary of State sets out favoured proposals for local government reorganisation in Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Somerset

The Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Robert Jenrick, has chosen his preferred proposals for local government reorganisation in Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Somerset.
Jul 21, 2021

High Court quashes decision by deputy monitoring officer that parish councillor had breached code of conduct

A parish councillor has won a High Court challenge over a decision by a Deputy Monitoring Officer (DMO) to uphold a complaint that he had breached its Code of Conduct for Members (PC Code).
Jul 21, 2021

Powers for judges to modify quashing orders among key measures as Judicial Review and Courts Bill introduced

The Judicial Review and Courts Bill has been introduced to Parliament today (21 July), with the Government claiming it would “equip judges with the tools to give more tailored solutions in judicial review cases”.
Jul 19, 2021

MPs demand reforms to ensure sustainability of local government finances

The time is right to consider a more radical review of local government finances, the Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee has said.
Jul 16, 2021

Local Government Association issues supporting guidance for Model Code of Conduct

The Local Government Association has published supporting guidance which is aimed to help understanding and consistency of approach towards the Model Councillor Code of Conduct.
Jul 16, 2021

Standards watchdog calls on Government to respond to recommendations in 2019 local government ethical standards report “as a matter of urgency”

The chair of the Committee on Standards in Public Life has said the watchdog remains concerned that the Government has not formally responded to its local government ethical standards report, some two and a half years after it was published.
Jul 15, 2021

New deals on way for counties as part of more flexible approach to devolution in England, says Prime Minister

The Prime Minister has signalled that the Government will adopt a more flexible approach devolution in England, saying “we need to re-write the rulebook”, with new deals for the counties.
Jul 14, 2021

Public Accounts Committee demands urgent action to improve system of local government audit in England

Without urgent action from government, the audit system for local authorities in England may soon reach breaking point, an influential committee of MPs has warned.
Jul 06, 2021

Welsh Government legislative programme to contain consolidation Bill in bid to create single and fully bilingual law

The Welsh Government has confirmed that its next legislative programme will include the introduction of its first consolidation Bill, which is aimed at making the law in Wales more accessible.
Jul 02, 2021

Council issues Section 114 notice due to "range of challenging financial issues"

Slough Borough Council has issued a Section 114 notice and will be pausing non-essential spending in response to a report by the Director of Finance into the state of the council's finances.

  MORE FEATURES

April 14, 2021

Remote meetings and the importance of ‘local choice’

The imminent High Court hearing over the ability of councils in England to continue to hold remote meetings after 6 May is about ensuring local choice, the leaders of the two organisations behind the legal proceedings tell Local Government Lawyer.
April 09, 2021

Deja Value all over again [i] – The Best Value Report on Liverpool City Council

Dr Paul Feild looks at some of the lessons to be learned - including in relation to the legal team - from the best value report into at Liverpool City Council.
March 29, 2021

The Independent Review of Administrative Law: Much ado about nothing or rewriting the rules of public law?

Richard Drabble QC, Jenny Wigley QC, David Elvin QC and Tim Buley QC consider what the Independent Review of Administrative Law (IRAL) report recommended and analyse the government's response.
March 29, 2021

From virtual to hybrid? The future of Council meetings

Richard Harwood QC OBE looks at the potential consequences of the government's decison not to extend the use of virtual meetings beyond 7th May.
March 19, 2021

Brexit - key legislation explained

The following Public Law practice note produced in partnership with Dr. Kieran Laird of Gowling WLG provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering the key legislation governing Brexit.
March 15, 2021

The LLG Grapevine 15th March

Deborah Evans, Dennis Hall and Helen McGrath from LLG discuss devolution, Judicial Review, GDPR, The CfGS's Governance Risk & Resilience Framework, gender equality, flexible working, Rule of Law and Test and Trace.
March 04, 2021

Hugh James' NPS Framework Fortnight: Lot 4 - Corporate Governance and Ethical Standards

Justin Davies and Martin Jones focus on governance and ethical standards issues in local authorities, looking at the Seven Principles of Public Life, first set out by Lord Nolan in 1995 that outlined the ethical standards those working in the public sector are expected to adhere to.
March 01, 2021

The LLG Grapevine 1st March

This week Deborah Evans, Dennis Hall and Helen McGrath discuss Covid Procurement Transparency, Local Authority Pension Investment, Emergency Legislation during Covid, Working Time and being 'On Call', News from Wales, Schools, Fly-tipping and Dismissal for Not Wearing a Face Mask.
February 26, 2021

New powers for local authorities in Wales

Clare Hardy sets out some of the opportunities presented by the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021.
February 18, 2021

Brexit Timeline Tracker

This Practice Note sets out a timeline of key events and updates in the post-transition period, focussing in particular on the implementation of the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement and associated agreements.
February 05, 2021

Whistleblowing during COVID: Blowing the whistle on whistle blowing claims

Gillian Crew examines the applicable law of whistleblowing claims, and how to deal with such claims that may arise during the COVID-19 pandemic.
January 29, 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Governance Tracker

This tracker from LexisNexis Local Government intended to be used to track the most recent key developments, legislation, guidance, parliamentary briefing notes and other sources of interest relating to coronavirus (COVID-19) local authority governance, where relevant to local government lawyers.
January 29, 2021

Ceasing discretionary functions and powers

Matthew Alderton sets out some key issues for public bodies to consider when they are contemplating ceasing discretionary functions.
January 27, 2021

The LLG Grapevine 18th January

Deborah Evans, Dennis Hall and Helen McGrath from LLG welcome Peter Stanyon, CEO of the Association of Electoral Administrators, to discuss the upcoming elections, the position at present, the volume of elections, postal voting and the practical challenges of holding covid-19 secure elections and counts.
January 08, 2021

Remote meetings: planning for permanence

Ed Hammond looks at the benefits of remote meetings and the likelihood the arrangements facilitating them will be put on a permanent footing.
December 23, 2020

Max Power

Paul Feild looks at the key points arising out of the non-statutory review into Nottingham City Council and Robin Hood Energy.
December 23, 2020

What next for local government re-organisation?

Anja Beriro examines whether the momentum towards significant reorganisation of local government in England has stalled.
December 22, 2020

Consulting on new policies

The Court of Appeal has confirmed the correct tests to apply to determine whether: (1) a public body has consulted fairly; and (2) is under a legitimate expectation to consult. Matthew Alderton analyses the ruling.
December 18, 2020

Running elections in 2021 - What's changing?

Elections are now likely to take place in May 2021. What are the challenges facing returning officers and their staff, running elections in a coronavirus (COVID-19) environment and what is being done to address them? Mark Heath explains.
December 01, 2020

The LLG Grapevine 1st December

Deborah Evans, Dennis Hall and Helen McGrath from LLG, discuss Devolution, All Party Parliamentary Groups. the Environment Bill, the Joint Committee on Human Rights, the Draft Building Safety Bill, the Spending Review and more.
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