Editor's blog: Shoot the messenger?
The attack on monitoring officers by Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis and his predecessor Bob Neill during a Westminster Hall debate a few days ago was powerful stuff. The duo laid a range of criticisms at officers' door, accusing them of giving poor advice and 'gold-plating' the revised standards regime. Read more...
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ACSeS hits back at minister in row over monitoring officers Association sends open letter to Brandon Lewis after he accused some officers of giving poor advice and 'gold-plating' revised standards regime. See also the original story: Minister attacks monitoring officers for giving "far too much poor advice"
Probity watchdog attacks Localism Act standards regime Committee for Standards in Public Life warns over lack of available sanctions and independent scrutiny
Mandatory ground for possession will only make delays worse: Law Society Chancery Lane criticises flagship DCLG proposal for eviction cases
Government "in no doubt" that courts will still say courts cannot bring defamation claims: minister Lord McNally reveals discussions between MoJ and DCLG after Rutland considered legal action
Claimant wins permission to take youth cuts case to Court of Appeal Challenge to North Somerset's reduction in provision for youth services
Another council loses High Court battle over fees for care home providers Authority claims to pay highest rates in the North East. See also: Councils accused of "bully boy tactics" over care home fees
Law Society broadens practice note on local authority Children Act meetings Now covers all solicitors attending, not just those employed by councils
British Beer & Pub Association takes legal action over council guidance Association seeks judicial review of guidance on protection of pubs
Supreme Court refuses Cornwall permission to appeal £4.5m leases case Unitary seeking to argue that predecessor authorities had breached fiduciary duties
Call for Law Society to keep two seats on council for local government ACSeS says two representatives are a minimum, argues for more
SLG calls for nominations for Young Solicitor of the Year award Ninth year of award that recognises contribution of local government solicitors to their authorities and communities
London boroughs slam DCLG measures to tackle planning underperformance Proposals described as "excessive" to deal with small number of authorities
Many public law child cases will not conclude within 26 weeks, magistrates warn Concerns also expressed at limits being placed on scrutiny of care plans
Failure to comply with planning enforcement notices sees man fined £250k
Scottish Government extends FOI to certain companies set up by councils
LGA criticises reforms to street trading rules, warns of "free-for-all"
Town hall chiefs attack plan to remove oversight role in dispersal powers
Council ordered to pay £35k after 29 park employees develop hand injuries
See all of our most recent news stories
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New articles on Local Government Lawyer
The LPA as landowner and how to tackle s106s
Caroline Bywater discusses the quagmire that surrounds securing s. 106 obligations where the local planning authority is the landowner.
Health and social care commissioning: the procurement implications
Emma Trundle outlines the application of the public procurement regime to health and social care contracts and how forthcoming changes impact local authorities.
Dealing with anti-social behaviour - the proposed new tools
Following publication of the draft Anti-Social Behaviour Bill, Donna McCarthy looks at the tools that are to be made available.
The inherent jurisdiction: where are we now?
Alex Ruck Keene looks at the status of the High Court's inherent jurisdiction after the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and examines the uncertainty caused by recent rulings.
Licence reviews - proof of breach not required
A High Court judge has held that it is not necessary upon a review to prove that the licence was breached. Philip Kolvin QC explains the background.
A friend in need - how to manage litigants in person and McKenzie Friends
Sarah Mumford provides some top tips on how to manage a claim brought by a litigant in person and how to handle communication with someone acting as the LiP's lay adviser or 'McKenzie Friend'.
The Mid-Staffs public inquiry - whistleblowing, bullying and harassment
In the second of a two-part series, Jodie Sinclair, Carlton Sadler and John Moore look at the issues raised by the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust public inquiry in relation to whistleblowing, bullying and harassment.
Happy New energy certificate requirements!
Bill Chandler warns that on 9 January 2013 the Display Energy Certificate regime for public sector buildings was significantly extended, requiring many local authorities and other public bodies to obtain additional energy certificates for previously exempt buildings.
The latest blogs...
Fee simple: split views on examination costs by Angus Walker
This entry reports on the disagreement between some project promoters and the Planning Inspectorate over how fees should be charged for Planning Act applications.
Snap judgement: Do you think that the Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis's comments that monitoring officers are providing poor advice to their authorities underlines the need for monitoring to be legally-qualified?
Yes - A proper understanding of the law is essential to do the job to the required standard
No - A focus on legal technicalities can prevent MOs from taking a wider view
Click here to vote now
And some you may have missed....
Adult Social Services: Detention in a care home and Article 8
The Court of Protection has approved arrangements for safeguarding the Article 8 rights of a man detained in a private care home. Richard Mumford
examines the ruling.
Children's Services: Reporting restriction orders and care proceedings The Sun
newspaper recently claimed success in relation to an application for a reporting restriction order covering care proceedings. Rosalind English
examines the High Court's ruling.
Community Safety: Outright or suspended
The Court of Appeal has considered the correct approach to be taken in discretionary residential possession cases involving previous incidents of anti-social behaviour. Andy Lane
analyses the implications of the judgment.
Employment: The Mid-Staffs public inquiry - staff recruitment, standards and engagement
In the first of two articles, Julian Hoskins
and Jodie Sinclair
examine some of the workforce and employment law themes arising out of the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Trust public inquiry.
Governance: FOIA update: part two
In the second of a two-part series, Eleanor Grey QC
looks at key FOI decisions in the last six months on such issues as vexatious requests, crime fighting and confidentiality
Housing: The public sector equality duty, homelessness and the Pieretti principles
A county court judge recently considered the application of the public sector equality duty in a case where a council concluded that a tenant had made herself intentionally homeless by reason of her failure to pay the rent. Arthur Moore
reports on the outcome.
Licensing: The numbers game Andy Woods
looks at the increasing reliance by responsible authorities on numerical statistics and argues that these must be subject to a comprehensive examination for them to be relevant in licensing hearings.
Litigation: Disclosure of social work records and litigation
Those dealing with disclosure questions about sensitive records, in particular in relation to social work, need to take notice of a significant Court of Appeal ruling, writes Robin Hopkins
Planning: Equalities: due regard duly paid Nicholas Dobson
reports on a High Court ruling in a case where it was claimed that a council had breached the public sector equality duty when giving planning permission for the development of a school.
Procurement: The use of Teckal company structures in public services delivery
Shared services, spin-outs and 'in-house procurement' - Amy Auton-Smith
looks at using a Teckal company structure to deliver public services.
Projects: Licence Lite: Too heavy for most?
"Licence Lite" is an arrangement which can be made under an electricity supply licence condition allowing interested parties - such as local authorities - to supply electricity without having to sign up to the industry codes in full. Adam Davidson
looks at what it involves, as well as other options for those organisations looking to get into the energy supply market.
Property: Housing Revenue Account reform - what next for local authorities? David Isaacson
looks at the options open to local authorities in the new housing finance landscape.
Regulatory: Relying on an unlawful act to found a prosecution
Can a public authority rely on its own unlawful act to found a criminal prosecution? David Merson
reports on a recent High Court ruling involving a caravan site.
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