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There are 51 item(s) tagged with the keyword "Local government".

41. Debate over Martha's blog shows school meals matter

APSE has welcomed the debate about school meals that has been opened up as a result of schoolgirl Martha Payne's blog.

 

The 'Never Seconds' blog by the nine-year-old from Lochgilphead, Argyll has put school food under the media spotlight. We have campaigned for the highest standards in school food and believes that opening up debate will give school meals the importance they deserve politically.

 

Martha's blog takes a balanced view and her experience of food at school is positive overall. Though some meals appear less appetising than others, her latest ‘food-o-meter’ score rated her school lunch 10/10. 

Tags: School Meals, Local government, Marthas blog
By Paul O'Brien
42. Challenging times call for well thought out solutions

Having met with three very different local government chief executives recently I was struck by the commonality of understanding of the challenges that council’s face in the coming years. Fiona Lees from East Ayrshire, Manjeet Gill from West Lindsey and Carolyn Downs of the LGA all shared a vision that the answers to the tough times ahead would be found in working closely with and within local communities.

With demographic change towards people living longer we know that a smaller percentage will be working in the future and that there will be greater demands for care services amongst an increasing elderly population. With increasing social problems created by alcohol and drugs, the number of children being looked after is also rising.

Tags: Local government, Communities, economic development
By Paul O'Brien
43. The business case for going green

Copy of an article Neil McInroy from CLES and myself recently did for Public Finance magazine.

Councils should be leading the way with renewable energy schemes. They can reap important economic and social rewards as well as environmental benefits

A report published this week by the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE) suggests there is still a business case for local government-led renewable energy schemes.

Tags: APSE, CLES, renewables, FIT's, Solar, local government, public finance
By Paul O'Brien
44. Tough times for local government in 2012

If local government thought 2011 was tough, 2012 may be about to get a whole lot tougher. With an estimated 145,000 job losses in councils over the previous 12 months, some may have thought the heavy lifting had been done. However, my fear is that whilst many have made significant progress in efficiency programmes, this may prove difficult to sustain – and the knock-on effect for councils that didn’t quite get there in year one could be catastrophic. With ongoing redundancies, wage freezes, rising pension payments and inflation remaining relatively high, morale will be near the floor.

Tags: APSE, Local government
By Paul O'Brien
45. Holding democracy dear

Many local authorities are considering the alternative models of service delivery that exist as part of their on-going plans to deal with the financial austerity they face over coming years. Issues that should be close to the top of any list when weighing up the pros and cons of each option are governance and accountability.

Tags: Governance, Accountability, Localism, local government, austerity, procurement, , elected members, APSE
By Paul O'Brien
46. Alternative models of service delivery - a price worth paying?

A huge debate is taking place at present about which are the best models available to divest public services through. I have got to say I remain to be convinced. Whatever service options local authorities decide to pursue in future the benchmark against which to appraise the options is the existing in-house service. Does any alternative form of provision meet or surpass the benefits that managing services directly yourself brings.

Tags: in-house services, APSE, Public Services, local economies, Local government
By Paul O'Brien
47. The housing crisis is back

The housing crisis is back. For many in local government dealing with the consequences of homelessness, overcrowding and poor stock condition, it has never really gone away. The difference is that the problem is now reaching previously untouched sectors of society – and it's about to get worse.

Home ownership is predicted to drop to 63%, its lowest level since the mid 1980s, a whole generation are 'locked out' of the housing market, and there is chronic lack of supply of new homes, according to the Oxford Economics' report that recently hit national headlines.

Tags: Housing, APSE, Local government
By Paul O'Brien
48. Plugged into the renewables grid

When APSE launched its research publication ‘The virtuous green circle: creating a revolving fund for local authority solar energy’, in Birmingham recently, I was impressed by the number of authorities present who were making progress with delivering projects in this area of renewable energy.

Tags: APSE, solar pv, renewables, biomass, electric fleet, local government
By Paul O'Brien
49. A time for cool heads

When Chancellor George Osborne delivered his budget to the House of Commons he openly stated that it was the beginning of an attempt to fundamentally rebalance the shape of the UK economy by reducing the role of the public sector in order to stimulate private endeavour. He then went on to outline a series of measures that the Institute for Fiscal Studies described as the most severe and sustained cuts to public services since the Second World War.

Tags: APSE, The Budget, George Osborne, local government, local government
By Paul O'Brien
50. A time for cool heads

When Chancellor George Osborne delivered his budget to the House of Commons he openly stated that it was the beginning of an attempt to fundamentally rebalance the shape of the UK economy by reducing the role of the public sector in order to stimulate private endeavour. He then went on to outline a series of measures that the Institute for Fiscal Studies described as the most severe and sustained cuts to public services since the Second World War.

Tags: APSE, The Budget, George Osborne, local government, local government
By Paul O'Brien

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Promoting excellence in public services

APSE (Association for Public Service Excellence) is a not for profit local government body working with over 300 councils throughout the UK. Promoting excellence in public services, APSE is the foremost specialist in local authority frontline services, hosting a network for frontline service providers in areas such as waste and refuse collection, parks and environmental services, cemeteries and crematorium, environmental health, leisure, school meals, cleaning, housing and building maintenance.

           

 

          

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