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CLG Business Plan 2011 – 2015: Key announcements for local government

November 8, 2010

Department for Communities and Local Government Business Plan 2011 – 2015

The Department for Communities and Local Government has today (8th November) published its Business Plan for 2011 – 2015. The key announcements are timelines for the introduction of reform to affordable housing and tenure, and a local government resource review, both after January 2011. The full document can be accessed here.

Key announcements for local government:

Local Finance Review

  • Deliver proposals for long term change to how local authorities are funded through the local government resource review, including local retention of business rates, giving councils greater freedoms, while retaining fairness in the local government finance system.

To be achieved by:  Jan 2011

  • Develop and introduce proposals to implement local retention of business rates and Tax Increment Financing and any further changes agreed in the local government resource review, working with HM Treasury

To be achieved by: Started

Housing Revenue Account, tenure and affordable housing

  • Publish a summary of consultation responses and a draft Direction on Tenure

To be achieved by: Jan 2011

  • Introduce an ‘Affordable Rent’ scheme, which will contribute towards up to 150,000 new affordable homes for the spending review period. This will allow housing associations to provide new homes at a rent between social and local market rents and with a tenancy agreement that will be reviewed after an agreed period of time
  • Publish with the Homes and Communities Agency details on how the funding will work
  • Publish detailed proposals for reform of the Housing Revenue Account, including when it will come into force, so that local authorities can plan for the changes

To be achieved by: Started

  • Housing Revenue Account determinations finalised and published, giving details of financing valuations and payments required for reform to take place

To be achieved by: Jan 2012

  • Seek up-to-date data from local authorities on their council housing stock

To be achieved by:  June 2011

Structural Reform

  • Prepare cities for the new powers and structures
  • Hold referendums in England’s 12 largest cities, and any other cities that choose to participate. If cities vote to have a Mayor, start the transfer of additional powers and full executive authority and rapidly hold and election

To be achieved by: May 2011

Community Budget Pilots

  • First phase of community budgets launched in 16 places

To be achieved by: April 2011

Regional Growth Fund

  • Run the first bidding round for the Regional Growth Fund, whereby private bodies and public-private partnerships (including local enterprise partnerships) bid for funding to invest in sustainable private sector led growth

To be achieved by: Nov 2010

Health and safety

  • Make local authorities accountable for health and safety decisions and offering citizens a route for redress where events have been cancelled by a local authority

To be achieved by: Started

Council tenders

  • Local authority spending, contracts and tenders above £500, and job titles and salaries for senior council officers, published in an open and standardised format

To be achieved by: Jan 2011

Planning

  • Amend planning policy to give councils the power to stop unwanted ‘garden grabbing’
  • Develop proposals to streamline the process of producing local authority plans, including removing unnecessary requirements and stopping Planning Inspectors from re-writing plans
  • Develop proposals to empower local communities to bring forward neighbourhood plans through the structure of either a parish council or a newly-formed neighbourhood forum
  • Work with a small number of places to develop neighbourhood plans using existing powers

To be achieved by: Started

Further analysis to follow. If you have any questions about this briefing please contact Dan Grafield on 0207 554 2803; or via email on dan.garfield@lgiu.org.uk

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