Local Government Lawyer
Editor's blog: Target practice

I have to admit that I was definitely a sceptic when the Government promised to introduce a 26-week deadline for the completion of all childcare proceedings, save for exceptional cases. But maybe I will have to revise my opinion after the recent findings of the London care proceedings pilot. Launched on 1 April, the iniitial results are pretty dramatic with the scheme appearing to more than halve the duration of care proceedings cases. Read more...

Jobs latest: A public sector body in the North West is looking for a Head of Legal and Governance, preferably with monitoring officer experience, for a 12-month term. Or how about this very interesting Senior Solicitor/Barrister role at Leicester City Council?

New course on Local Government Law.tv: The Draft Care and Support Bill by Browne Jacobson. This course is free-of-charge to London Boroughs Legal Alliance members - please contact Hannah Jennings (Hannah.Jennings@KennedyCater.com) for further details.

Unlimited access corporate subscriptions
to Local Government Law.tv are now available, starting at just £495 + VAT for 12 months, including free access for your client departments. For further details, please click here or contact Derek Bedlow on 0207 239 4917, email derek.bedlow@localgovernmentlaw.tv.

News headlines

ProjectsLondon care proceedings pilot claims dramatic reduction in case duration Pilot launched by three London councils has more than halved duration of care proceedings to below Government's planned limit of 26 weeks

DCLG consults on proposals to speed up planning appeal procedures Includes plans to introduce an expedited 'commercial appeals service'

Recreation ground cannot be registered as a village green, says Court of Appeal Ground was provided by local authority in exercise of its statutory powers

Claimants ask Court of Appeal for permission to challenge 'critical-only' care policy High Court judge refused permission in July to bring judicial review proceedings over West Berkshire's policy

Councils consider appeal after setback in car park VAT case Upper Tribunal rules against authorities in test case over VAT paid on off-street car parking charges

DWP wins permission to take landmark housing benefit case to Supreme Court Department to claim rules were not discriminatory or if they were, they could be justified

Administrative Court to start hearing cases in Bristol Move represents final stage in regionalisation of its work

Child protection boost as UK brings Hague Convention into force Convention provides agreed set of legal provisions and co-operation arrangements to cover handling of cross-border cases 

Councils in danger of failing statutory duty on libraries, MPs warn Committee chairman slams uncertainty over what is expected of authorities, expresses concern over JRs

Home Office issues guidance on late night levy provisions Powers for councils to introduce levies and early morning restriction orders came into force at beginning of month

Local authority defeats developer in High Court battle over retail park restrictions Peel Holdings claimed cumulative effect of 29 successful planning applications meant it was no longer bound by restrictions

Brussels proposes to overhaul laws on environmental impact assessments European Commision vows to provide greater legal certainty

Ministers consult on making it easier to set up new town and parish councils Plans to streamline process could see changes to guidance and legislation

Welsh housing association to set up legal services framework agreement One of Wales' largest housing associations is to set up a legal services framework

Peers to scrutinise new Cabinet Office guidance on public consultation

County council set to adopt policy against large wind turbines on its land

DCLG sets up reviews of building regulations and housing standards 

District councils slam Heseltine proposals for local government reorganisation

Council collaboration leads to three-year prison sentence for loan shark

Welsh Government imposes new duty on local authorities over children's play

Council starts search for legal adviser on flagship regeneration scheme

Adoption charity cannot change constitution to exclude gay couples, tribunal rules

Ministers invite bids for new powers in second wave of 'City Deals'

Defendant law firm with public sector clients nets private equity investment

See all of our most recent news stories

New articles on Local Government Lawyer

NoonStraight to the core
The High Court recently dismissed a sustainability appraisal challenge made to Core Strategy housing policies. Gregory Jones QC and Juan Lopez explain why.

Requests for personal data on employees
Eleanor Grey QC reviews the Information Commissioner's new guidance on requests for personal data about public authority employees.

Watchful eye
Councils need to spell out how their use of surveillance powers is saving taxpayers' money and protecting vulnerable residents, writes Cllr Mehboob Khan.

Suspended animation
When will damages be an adequate remedy in automatic suspension cases? David Hansom looks at how a recent High Court decision was reached.

Priority booking
The Priority Schools Building Programme has finally been given the green light. Annie Moy looks at what it entails.

Pushed to the limits
The Supreme Court recently ruled that a group of former employees could bring equal pay claims in the High Court, where the time limits are considerably longer than those in the employment tribunals. Matthew Wort and Chris Plumley consider the impact of the judgment.

Establishment figure
A judgment involving a school teaches us the meaning of 'establishment' in relation to collective redundancies. Phil Allen analyses the ruling.

Deep impact
Jeremy Phillips looks at some of the problems, particularly for licensees, surrounding cumulative impact zones.

The latest blogs...
Heseltine Review apes existing policy on infrastructure by Angus Walker
The Heseltine Review is rather underwhelming as far as his recommendations on planning and infrastructure are concerned. 

And some you may have missed....

Adult Social Services: Recovering social care debt Caroline Sanders analyses some of the legal complexities that can affect a social care debt recovery case.

Children's Services: Local authorities and international adoptions Ayeesha Bhutta analyses local authorities' duties and the potential pitfalls they face in cases of international adoption and children being brought illegally into the UK.

Community Safety: Failure to stop disability harassment The Court of Human Rights has recently ruled that a state's failure to stop disability harassment amounted to inhuman treatment. Maria Roche analyses the ruling.

Employment: State of the union On the back of the Government's recent proposals to conduct a 'radical overhaul' of arrangements under which civil servants are permitted to carry out union duties during working time, Helen Burgess examines the role of union representatives in the workplace. 

Governance: Keeping watch Ibrahim Hasan examines the new Home Office guidance on obtaining magistrates' approval for the use of covert surveillance under RIPA.

Housing: Hard of hearing? Alexander Bastin considers the issue of hearsay in a social housing context.

Licensing: Take it with you Is the portability of casino licences the next step towards localism? Ewen Macgregor looks at the latest developments.

Litigation: Ask the expert? The High Court has handed down an important judgment on the role of expert evidence in procurement challenges. Colin Ricciardello assesses the ruling.

Planning: The death of localism? Smoke and mirrors prevail at the launch of the new Growth and Infrastructure Bill, argues David Merson.

Procurement: Negotiating strategy There have been some wins for the UK in negotiations over the new EU procurement directive, reports Andrew Milross.

Projects: Green Deal - the issues Bill Hull sets out some of the current legal issues that are key to registered providers delivering the best outcome from the Green Deal scheme for their residents and communities.

Property: Correcting leases Charles Ward explains how the London Borough of Sutton went about correcting more than 100 right-to-buy leases after it was discovered that the service charge percentages were incorrect.

Regulatory: Food for thought The Court of Appeal recently gave guidance as to the principles to be applied when considering the imposition of a hygiene prohibition order under food hygiene regulations. Adam Pearson analyses the ruling.

Local Government Law.tv

We are pleased to announce the introduction of an annual corporate subscription that will provide access to a full year of CPD accredited legal training for your lawyers and your client departments

What is included

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Alternatively, if you would like to pay-as-you-go for webinar training by setting up a corporate pay-as-you-go account for your authority a monthly invoice will be produced and a 10% discount will be applied to all purchases by members of your authority.
There is also the option to take a free trial of a webinar (which includes CPD credit).  Register as a user on www.localgovernmentlaw.tv  and add your preferred course to the cart. During the checkout process, enter FREE TRIAL in the box where indicated (don't forget to click 'Submit'), and the cost of your course will be reduced to zero. Complete the process and your course will be instantly available to view and you can watch it as many times as required for 30 days, from any computer or most mobile devices.

Click here to see all courses on Local Government Law.tv (96) New courses due in the next few weeks include content on outsourcing, fostering and adoption, the Community Infrastructure Levy, mediation, shared services, child protection, redundancy, village greens and the NPPF. Other forthcoming content includes a webinar on resources and community care as well as updates on procurement and judicial review and a series of practical litigation courses including webinars on disclosure and preparing for trial.


Jobs of the week

Leicester City Council
Senior Solicitor/Barrister
Following a temporary increase in workload brought about by the transfer of public health functions and associated procurement and governance, we are looking a highly motivated Solicitor/Barrister to join our well-established Commercial and General Law Section.

Head of Legal
A public sector body in the North West is looking for a Head of Legal and Governance, preferably with monitoring officer experience, for a 12-month term. 

Contracts and Procurement Locum
A local authority in the Midlands is looking for a Contracts and Procurement Lawyer for at least three months. 

Childcare Solicitor
An opportunity has arisen for a Childcare Solicitor to join a reputable local authority in the South Gloucestershire area. 

Practice Manager
A reputable and forward thinking public sector organisation in Yorkshire is recruiting an Interim Practice Manager. 

Adult Social Services Lawyer
A fantastic opportunity has arisen for an Adult Social Services Lawyer to join a local authority in London. 

Employment Locum
A large public sector organisation has an opportunity for an Employment Solicitor to join them for two days a week on an ongoing basis.

Planning & Property Lawyer
A new short-term position has become available at a local authority in East Anglia. 

Other featured jobs

Commercial Property Locum
A local authority based in East Anglia is recruiting a Commercial Property Locum. 

Contracts & Property Locum
An excellent opportunity has arisen for a Commercial Contracts/Procurement and Property Locum to join a local authority based in the South West. 

Housing Litigation Locum
A local authority in Buckinghamshire is looking to hire a Civil Litigation Locum. 

Contracts Locum
A six-month locum role for a Contracts Lawyer has become available in this South London local authority. 

Childcare Locum
An exciting opportunity has arisen for a Childcare Locum to join a local authority based in the Lancashire area. 

Contracts Locum
A local authority in the East London area is looking for a determined and ambitious Contracts Locum. 

Commercial Lawyer
A public sector body in the North West is recruiting a Commercial Lawyer with five years plus PQE. 

Childcare Paralegal
An opportunity has arisen for a temporary Childcare Paralegal in the South East London area. 

Search all jobs 

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