Auditors criticise council over due diligence process for series of loans
KPMG severely criticises borough over how it came to make series of loans, including to local football team, and over its accounting
Lawyers to Hillsborough relatives draft Public Authorities Accountability Bill
Legal teams representing relatives of 96 people who died at Hillsborough publish new law that would compel public officials to tell truth at inquiries
Law Commission consults on reform to law on misconduct in public office
Existing law on misconduct in public office is “unclear, ambiguous and in need of reform”, law reform advisory body says, issuing consultation paper on new statutory offence
London boroughs name 27 barristers' chambers to £15m+ legal panels
Lambeth and Southwark choose chambers for framework worth more than £15m over four years
Four councils shortlisted for Local Authority Family Team of the Year
Four councils in running to be named Local Authority Family Team of the Year at Family Law Awards 2016, while lawyer at county council is shortlisted in Associate Solicitor of the Year category
Claimant law firm Public Interest Lawyers ceases trading
Public Interest Lawyers, claimant law firm that brought legal proceedings against number of councils in past - most notably in relation to changes to library services, ceased trading at end of last month
Officer jailed for section 106 planning gain fraud
Officer at borough jailed over £42,000 fraud involving money raised from developers through section 106 planning gain contributions
Coventry University to procure legal panels worth £2m to £8m
MORE NEWS STORIES....
Information Commissioner to raise issue of transparency as outsourcing rises
Elizabeth Denham concerned at level of transparency when private companies provide increasing proportion of public services
Councils struggling to prevent data disclosure, security breaches: research
Significant number of councils struggling to prevent erroneous disclosure of data, security breaches and other forms of data loss, FOI request by Zurich Municipal suggests
PM appoints duo to Committee on Standards in Public Life
Prime Minister names Local Government Ombudsman and chair of NHS trust (and ex-head of law at two councils) to standards watchdog
Law centres to challenge award of contract for discrimination helpline to G4S
Law Centres Network to challenge Government’s award of contract for operating national discrimination advice helpline to G4S
Charity takes legal action after child held in custody for non-payment of fines
Howard League for Penal Reform iseeks permission for judicial review of decisions by magistrates’ courts that led to vulnerable child being held in police custody for two nights for non-payment of fines
Brewers and pub companies urge moratorium on changes to licensing law
British Beer & Pub Association calls for moratorium on further legislative change during current Parliament, in submission to House of Lords Select Committee inquiry on Licensing Act 2003
Uber nets permission to challenge new TfL regulations for private hire
Internet based minicab service Uber wins permission to challenge parts of Transport for London’s new regulations for private hire trade
Council eyes replacing late night levy with business improvement district
Borough launches consultation on whether its Late Night Levy should be superseded by newly established Business Improvement District
See all of our most recent news stories
Analysis on Local Government Lawyer
Governance lessons from Rotherham and Tower Hamlets
Paul Feild looks at the lessons from the imposition of commissioners at Rotherham and Tower Hamlets Councils and a recent review by the Communities and Local Government Committee of the Government's actions.
Housing land supply
The Communities Secretary has, belatedly, revealed the Government's thinking on a number of crucial housing land supply controversies. Josef Cannon reports.
Residual cumulative impacts of development
The High Court recently rejected a challenge to refusal of planning permission for 650 homes in Cheltenham. The ruling is important on the issue of residual cumulative impacts of development, writes Ashley Bowes.
Sub-tenants and section 20 consultation
Steven Eccles and Mark Robertson consider new law on dealing with sub-tenants when undertaking Section 20 consultation.
Bulk applications for deputyship remuneration
The Court of Protection recently considered a not-for-profit organisation's 'bulk application' in relation to deputyship remuneration. Bethan Harris looks at the judgment.
Shield and sword
Melanie Pears and Tim Care deliver a reminder of what the standstill period entails and provide guidance for contracting authorities on how to avoid the trap of this potential procurement pitfall.
Dealing with requests for flexible working
A judgment of the Employment Appeal Tribunal is a signficant ruling for employers when it comes to the sex discrimination risk when dealing with flexible working requests, writes Phil Allen.
Government drops National Infrastructure Commission set-up from Bill: by Angus Walker
The Government has this week published the Neighbourhood Planning Bill - the National Infrastructure Commission does not feature
M4 widening goes ahead but two energy deadlines missed
August round-up of infrastructure planning
Catch-up on recent articles on Local Government Lawyer and Public Law Today:
Adult Social Services: Deprivation of liberty, dogs and a deputy’s dereliction of duty
A district judge recently criticised the approach taken by a deputy in a deprivation of liberty case and replaced them with a panel deputy. The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers
examine the ruling.
Adult Social Services: Pilot schemes in the Court of Protection
and Lee Parkhill
summarise the key points for two pilot schemes commencing in the Court of Protection next month.
Adult Social Services: Accommodation under the Care Act and the General Power of Competence
A High Court judge recently considered issues around the Care Act and the General Power of Competence. David Owens
, Judith Barnes
and Trevor Watt
question the ruling.
Children: Children, consent and deprivation of liberty
This LexisPSL Local Government
article, produced in partnership with Tim Spencer-Lane
considers recent court decisions on whether a parent can consent to the confinement of their child which, absent a valid consent, would amount to a deprivation of liberty.
Children: How to draft a local authority threshold document in care proceedings
LexisPSL Local Government
in partnership with Tim Earl,
Solicitor to the Council and Head of Legal Services of Suffolk County Council, explains how to draft a local authority threshold document in care proceedings.
Children: The pre-proceedings process
LexisPSL Local Government
in partnership with Joy Hopkinson
of London Borough of Lambeth Council explains the pre-proceeding process under the Public Law Outline (PLO) reforms to care proceedings.
Education: Schools, sport and the duty of care
A recent Northern Ireland case provided guidance on, and a useful review of the case law in England and Wales relating to, the duty of care owed by a school to its pupils when participating in sport, write Bruce Ralston
and Richard Rowe
Education: Checks on academy governors
Katie Michelon sets out the safeguarding checks that academies are required to carry out on their governors.
Education: Education, health and care plans
LexisPSL Local Government
, in partnership with Anita Chopra
and Chris Barnett
of Match Solicitors set out a checklist for moving children from statements to the new regime of education, health and care plans.
Employment: Flexible working and indirect discrimination
reports on a recent Employment Appeal Tribunal case involving a claim of indirect sex discrimination brought by a teacher at a school for children with special educational needs.
Employment: Disclosing safeguarding risks
A recent Court of Appeal ruling on whether the dismissal of a head teacher for failing to disclose a potential safeguarding risk was fair will be of interest to schools, local authorities and other bodies concerned with safeguarding issues, writes Morris Hill
Governance: The chickens come home to roost?
examines the headaches for local authorities arising out of Lender Option Borrower Option (LOBO) loans.
Governance: Austerity budgets, cuts to statutory services and reports to members
In an age of austerity budgets, Paul Feild
sets out the learning points following a recent High Court case involving cuts to funding of short breaks for disabled children.
Governance: Consultation in austerity 2016: a practical guide
of Thurrock Borough Council provides a practical note on consultation procedure for local government practitioners and gives advice on how to carry out consultation which should be resilient to challenge.
Healthcare: No longer the end of the road
The High Court has issued a key ruling on challenging factual accuracy comments in the Care Quality Commission's regulatory process. Jonny Landau
and Andrew Parsons
analyse the outcome.
Healthcare: Serious untoward incidents
considers some of the lessons that can be learned from the Southern Health case.
Housing: Unlawful profit orders
There have been substantial gains recovered by social landlords through the unlawful profit orders regime. Kuljit Bhogal
provides a helpful review of their place in the sub-letting work of such landlords.
Housing: Housing applicants and unacceptable behaviour
analyses a recent Administrative Court decision on a council's practice of disqualifying applicants guilty of unacceptable behaviour.
Housing: Eviction for growing cannabis
The Court of Appeal has clarified when it is reasonable to evict a tenant guilty of growing cannabis. Thomas Djan-Krofa
reports on the court's ruling and its guidance on suspended possession orders.
Information Law: Donald, where’s your Schedule 3 condition to share information aboot your troosers?
A recent Supreme Court ruling should be read by anyone working in an area which involves regular data-sharing concerning sensitive and confidential data, writes Christopher Knight
Information Law: Public authorities and surveillance
The Office of Surveillance Commissioners has published its annual report. Steve Morris
sets out the key issues for public authorities.
Licensing: Are minor variations working?
looks at the process for varying a premises licence by way of a minor variation.
Licensing: Licensing fees and enforcement activity
Councils and other local authorities could face substantial bills for unlawful licensing fees if an Advocate-General’s opinion is followed by the European Court of Justice. Virginia Cooper
Litigation: Proof of fraud and unravelling settlements
The Supreme Court has ruled that proof of fraud previously suspected can unravel the finality of a settlement. David Williams
, Andrew Parker
and Catherine Burt
analyse the judgment.
Litigation: Costs in abuse claims
Abuse cases need to be dealt with sensitively and compassionately but both parties still need to ensure that costs are proportionate. Laura Broadhead reports on a recent ruling.
Litigation: County Court "costs only" appeals
reports on three cases in which applications for permission to appeal against a costs order were heard together by the Court of Appeal to establish the correct destination of such appeals.
Planning: Section 106 disagreements
looks at some of the difficult issues relating to section 106 agreements for major developments and how improvements could be made.
Planning: Planning appeal costs awards
What are the recoverable costs of a self-represented party in a planning appeal? Brendon Lee
Planning: Amendment of permitted development prior approval conditions
A recent case opens the door for any developers unhappy with the conditions imposed on any permitted development rights prior approval decision to apply for their variation or removal. Caroline Waller
and Laura Urch
Planning: The scope of the 'Murfitt' principle
The Court of Appeal has given guidance on the scope of the ‘Murfitt’ principle. Saira Kabir Sheikh QC
and Ned Westaway
explain the ruling.
Procurement: Explain yourself!
A judge has issued a warning to contracting authorities who might be tempted to minimise the amount of paperwork they keep particularly where they fear that a high profile procurement exercise might be challenged. Helen Prandy
Procurement: Penny wise and pound foolish
examines the issues raised when procurement claimants seek to avoid paying large court fees for bringing proceedings.
Procurement: Voluntary transparency notices
Is a voluntary transparency notice published in the OJEU? How in practice is this distinguished from the OJEU notices that are published in advance of a procurement process? The LexisPSL Public Law
Procurement: Reservation of public contracts
What is the interrelationship between regulations 20 and 77 of the Public Contract Regulations 2015? The LexisPSL Public Law
team analyse the reservation of public contracts.
Procurement: Introduction to concession contracts procurement
LexisPSL Local Government
in partnership with Walker Morris
explain the new process for concession contracts procurement by contracting authorities and utilities under the Concession Contracts Regulations 2016, SI 2016/273.
Projects: State aid anyone?
What does the EU referendum result mean for state aid? Paul McDermott
and Rebecca Rees
Property: Superior landlords and consultation
The Upper Tribunal recently considered the extent of consultation a superior landlord must carry out if intending to carry out works or enter a qualifying long term agreement. Jonathan Upton
sets out the key findings.
Property: Pubs as Assets of Community Value
Battles have raged over attempts to convert Assets of Community Value-listed public houses to dwellings. Christopher Cant
reviews the key rulings.
Property: The Supreme Court on disrepair
The Supreme Court recently reversed a disrepair decision where a tenant in a block of flats tripped on an uneven paving stone as he was taking out his rubbish. Angela Piears
Regulatory: Models of building control provision
discusses legal issues related to alternative models of building control provision.
Transport: What now for trust ports?
examines the key findings and recommendations from the Department for Transport’s trust port study.
|CIL and Planning Obligations
||This presentation considers the past, present and future of the Community Infrastructure Levy in the light of forthcoming reforms to the regime.
|Bringing Forward Development
||Will forthcoming changes to the NPPF, permitted development rights and the Housing and Development bill shift power towards or away from Local Planning Authorities?
|Old and New Means of Development
||This course looks at the various measures being introduced by the Housing and Planning Bill to make development happen beyond the conventional planning permission system.
|The LLG Competency Framework
||To assist local authority solicitors to comply with the new CPD regime, the Lawyers in Local Government group has produced a new competency framework. Helen McGrath, Development Officer for LLG, outlines the main features of the framework and explains how
|Neighbourhood Planning: A Legal Perspective
||John Pugh-Smith and Daniel Stedman Jones look at how lawyers can square the circle of greater localism in the planning system and the need for more housing and infrastructure development.
|Housing and Local Plans
||Peter Village QC and Rose Grogan analyse the key features of the Housing and Planning Bill and outline some of the problems and pitfalls created by Local Plans as identified by recent case law.
|Human Rights, the Equality Act and Social Housing
||This course looks at the arguments faced by public authorities and social landlords when faced with claims based on the Equality Act 2010 or the Human Rights Act 1998 and outlines some of the defences and tactics available to defend them.
|Social Housing Eligibility Update 2015
||This course looks at which groups of people subject to immigration control are and are not eligible for social housing in the light of changes to welfare and immigration rules and recent case law.
|Possession Claims Update 2015
||This presentation provides an update on new housing legislation, regulation and case law before going on to look at the issues faced by social landlords as the first flexible tenancies granted under the Localism Act 2011 begin to expire.
|Local Government Law Update 2015
||Recorded in April 2015, leading barrister Richard Clayton QC outlines and analyses the key local government cases of the preceding 12 months across a range of disciplines. Includes a comprehensive downloadable paper.
|The Commercial Council
||Michael Mousdale and Bradley Martin provide a practical and legal guide for council officers and lawyers looking to establish local authority trading companies.
|Information Law Update 2015
||Steve Wood, Head of Policy Delivery at Information Commissioner’s Office, outlines and discusses the implications of some of the key developments surrounding Freedom of Information, the Data Protection Act and the Environmental Information Regulations.
|FOI and Data Protection Update 2016
||This presentation reviews the main changes in the past 12 months in the fields of Freedom of Information and Data Protection, with an extended look at Monetary Penalty Notices and an overview of the latest developments in relation to property search charg
|Social Housing Fraud
||This presentation identifies the main types of social housing fraud committed, the remedies available to tackle it and provides guidance on which are most suitable for particular types of fraud.
|Governance and Monitoring
||This presentation focuses on four topical areas of local authority governance: employee surveillance (including on social media), decision-making (pecuniary interests, bias, and committee make-up), whistleblowing and the counter-terrorism Prevent duty.
|Managing Cuts Lawfully
||This presentation looks at how legal challenges to decisions resulting from budget cuts can be avoided, mitigated and defended, focusing on the two grounds of challenge which appear most frequently unlawful consultation and breach of the PSED.
|Homelessness Update: Vulnerability and Intentionality
||This presentation highlights and analyses the landmark decisions of the Supreme Court in determining “vulnerability” under the Housing Act 1996 and whether somebody has made themselves intentionally homeless.
|The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act : One Year On
||A little over a year on from its implementation, this presentation looks at the effect of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. This short presentation focuses on the use of the new civil injunction powers and Criminal Behaviour Orders (
|Housing: Key Developments in 2015
||Ranjit Bhose QC, Dean Underwood and Tara O’Leary present an update on key developments in housing law, focusing on recent changes to the right-to-buy regime, judicial alterations to allocations policies and welfare reforms.
|Implementing the Care Act: Legal issues for local authoritie
||This presentation looks at potential consequences of a number of key aspects of Care Act 2014 and outlines how local authorities can avoid or mitigate the potential issues it creates.