Cabinet at Kent backs plans for creation of legal services company
Cabinet at Kent County Council backs plans for creation of council-owned legal services company/ABS, into which vast majority of Kent Legal Services staff will transfer
Judge criticises decision making of council in teenage radicalisation case
High Court judge describes decision making of London borough as “fundamentally flawed” and “difficult to justify or defend” in case involving teenage girl at risk of radicalisation
Traders win appeal over Shepherd's Bush Market regeneration CPO
Court of Appeal upholds challenge brought against ruling that decision by former Communities Secretary Eric Pickles to confirm compulsory purchase order for Shepherd’s Bush Market was lawful
Parish wins legal challenge over refusal to register land as village green
Parish council wins High Court challenge over local authority’s refusal to register land in its area as village green
MUST READ FOR GOVERNANCE LAWYERS: Personal data and politicians’ names
The Upper Tribunal recently ruled that, following an FOI request from a journalist, a council should disclose the identity of councillors who had failed to pay council tax on time. Julian Milford
examines the ruling.
Judge declines to quash planning permission despite ministerial concession
High Court judge upholds inspector’s decision to grant permission on appeal to developer for 32-dwelling scheme, despite Communities Secretary conceding that decision should be quashed
Chesterfield calls meeting in bid to see off legal action over devolution plans
Borough council calls second meeting to consider its devolution options, in what local authority says is "a bid to prevent tax payers’ money being wasted on an unnecessary legal challenge” threatened by county
Government consults on more changes to compulsory purchase system
Ministers issue consultation on further reforms to compulsory purchase system, with proposed changes covering principles of assessing compensation and improvements to technical processes
BUDGET 2016: key policy decisions by practice area
Local Government Lawyer highlights a number of the key policy decisions set out by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in 2016.
BUDGET 2016: reaction from the sector
Local Government Lawyer rounds up reactions in the local government sector to this year’s Budget.
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Councils and NHS England row over who picks up bill for new HIV treatment
Local Government Association accuses NHS England of “selective and untenable reading” of regulations after health body announces that councils are to be responsible for funding new HIV treatment
Home Office to consult on plans for group premises intervention power
Government unveils plans for group premises intervention power, improvements to Late Night Levy and further round of Local Alcohol Action Areas, as part of Modern Crime Prevention Strategy
DCLG issues guidance for local authorities on disposal of land assets
Department for Communities and Local Government publishes guidance for local authorities on disposals of their land assets as well as supporting measures on offer
Watchdog warns on transparency, governance at Local Enterprise Partnerships
National Audit Office expresses concern at level of transparency provided by LEPs and failure to test their governance assurance frameworks
Ministers launch local government counter fraud and corruption strategy
Government publishes three-year counter fraud and corruption strategy for local government in bid to reduce estimated £2bn lost each year
Education Committee launches inquiry into multi-academy trusts
Education Committee launches inquiry into performance, accountability and governance of Multi-Academy Trusts
Ombudsman takes councils to task over Disabled Facilities Grants processes
People with disabilities “are being left for too long in unsuitable homes” because of problems with councils’ Disabled Facilities Grants processes,Local Government Ombudsman warns
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Purchasing organisation eyes national framework agreement for legal services
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New articles on Local Government Lawyer
The mandatory ground post Akerman-Livingstone
One year after the Supreme Court ruling in Akerman-Livingstone, whither the ‘new’ mandatory ground for possession? Toby Huggins reports.
Game of drones – the law
Paul Feild examines the issues that local authorities may face as a result of the use of drones.
Wrangling with TUPE in procurement documents
Adrian Martin and John Houlden analyse the issues raised for bidders and purchasers by TUPE in procurement.
Alex Ruck Keene analyses where decision-making responsibilities lie – and the role of social workers – when it comes to powers of attorney, care homes, best interests and deprivations of liberty.
Infrequently used highways and dangerousness
The Court of Appeal has handed down judgment in a case that clarifies the test for dangerousness in respect of defects on infrequently used highways, writes Lucy Stranney.
Discarding a Core Strategy requirement
The High Court has recently ruled that discarding a recent Core Strategy housing requirement was lawful. Christopher Young explains why.
NPPF 14 and sustainable development
A High Court judge has considered the application of paragraph 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework. Richard Honey sets out the key findings.
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The latest blogs...
Budget 2016 - Government accepts NIC recommendations and gives it two new jobs
by Angus Walker
Although the sugary drinks tax has grabbed the headlines, infrastructure runs through yesterday’s Budget statement like the bubbles in a can of, er, soda water.
Catch-up on recent articles on Local Government Lawyer and Public Law Today:
Adult Social Services: “I reasonably don’t believe you”
looks at the issues when local authorities consider refusing social care support on credibility grounds.
Adult Social Services: Care home regulation
Is care and nursing home regulation and monitoring due for a shake up (or shake down)? Jonathan Auburn l
ooks at the Government’s Cutting Red Tape review.
Adult Social Services: Community care and the PSED
Does the Public Sector Equality Duty apply to individual community care decisions? Jonathan Auburn
analyses the key issues.
Adult Social Services: The Court of Protection and CICA awards
What part must the Court of Protection play in the finalisation of an award to an incapacitated person that the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority has decided should be held on trust? David Rees
Children: Section 17 and Child Arrangements Orders
sets out some practice points arising out of a recent case involving section 17 and Child Arrangements Orders.
Children: Section 20 of the Children Act 1989 – local authority duties
LexisPSL Local Government
and Claire Cousin
outline a local authority’s duty to provide accommodation to children under section 20 of the Children Act 1989, identifying the challenges a local authority may face including parental consent and capacity.
Children: Problems with a fact-finding hearing
The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers
look at the lessons from a Court of Appeal ruling that a judge’s fact-finding exercise was fatally flawed.
Education: School closure consultation
The High Court has rejected a legal challenge to a Welsh council’s plans to close a secondary school. James Goudie QC
Education: The OIA and judicial review
, Deputy Adjudicator, sets out ten principles from ten years of legal challenges involving the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Education: Academy sponsorship details and FOI
A recent case in the First-tier Tribunal has served as a pertinent reminder that certain information relating to the funding of academies may be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Richard Auton
reports. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Employment: Reasonable adjustment after Griffiths
analyses a significant Court of Appeal ruling on the correct comparator in a disability claim.
Employment: Caring for your carers
The Supreme Court has handed down an important decision in the case of the duties employers owe to employees working outside in areas over which they have no control. Steven Conway
looks at the impact of the ruling.
Employment: Re-organisation in the public sector
explores some of the employment law pitfalls that arise when public sector bodies attempt to re-organise.
Employment: Complaints and an 'act extending over a period'
The Employment Appeal Tribunal has suggested that different complaints may be considered together in deciding whether there has been an 'act extending over a period'. Allison Cook
analyses the ruling.
Employment: Injury to feelings payments and tax
analyses an important Upper Tribunal decision on settlements and the tax treatment of injury to feelings payments.
Employment: Can you speak English please?
A recent Employment Appeal Tribunal decision revisited the question as to whether an employer can instruct employees not to speak in a foreign language at work. Sejal Raja
and Michael Pine
examine the judgment.
Governance: Article 8 and decision-making
Two recent decisions demonstrate the reach, applicability and importance of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in terms of the functions and decision-making of public bodies, write Peter Wake a
nd Nick Peel
Governance: Is your Constitution due a health check?
With Annual Council only a few months away, now is the time to be checking your authority’s constitution, write Judith Barnes
and Frances Woodhead
Governance: Devolution Act gets Royal Assent
Legislation aimed at delivering the Government's devolution agenda has received Royal Assent. Judith Barnes
sets out the key measures.
Governance: The revised consultation principles
The Cabinet Office has issued a revised set of consultation principles. Stuart Thomson
looks at the key changes.
Governance: 15 years of the Human Rights Act
Has the Human Rights Act 1998 been successful? With the legislation turning 15, Stephen Grosz QC
talks to LexisNexis
about the past, present and future.
Healthcare: A human rights cautionary tale?
A recent High Court judgment involving claims against an NHS trust and an ambulance service dealt with the legal test for liability, causation and victim status. Francesca O'Neill
reports on the outcome. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Healthcare: Corporate manslaughter and public bodies
The first prosecution of an NHS Trust for corporate manslaughter collapsed. Tracey Longfield
and Colin Moore
explain what the case tells us. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Housing: Extending the local connection requirement
looks at the extension of the "local connection" requirement to four years for homeless applicants.
Housing: Enforcement of possession orders
looks at the issues raised by enforcement of a possession order by High Court writ rather than County Court warrant.
Housing: What now for selective licensing?
examines the latest developments in relation to selective licensing, including the Government's ‘20/20 rule’ and the end of borough-wide schemes.
Housing: Housing cases of interest
sets out the recent housing cases of interest over the last three months.
Housing: Failure to offer alternative accommodation
The High Court has recently considered two cases concerning the lawfulness of a council's failure to transfer two autistic children and their mothers to safe accommodation. Christopher Baker
reports on the outcome.
Housing: Principle versus pragmatism
Is it lawful for a Houses in Multiple Occupation licence to restrict the use of a bedroom to a particular occupier, such as students? Alex Campbell
analyses a recent Upper Tribunal ruling.
Housing: Money, money, money - councils make the world go around
What do councils need to consider when on-lending? Jon Coane
and Gurbinder Sangha
look at the key issues.
Information Law: Public health funerals and FOI
examines the issues surrounding public health funerals, heir hunters and freedom of information.
Information Law: Data breach notification and the new EU Data Protection Regulation
looks at what the new EU Data Protection Regulation says about data breaches and the need for data controllers to notify.
Licensing: Step changes proposed to summary reviews
and Josef Cannon
consider the implications of the recently proposed changes to the Summary Review procedure in the Licensing Act 2003.
Licensing: Bingo in pubs: the Greene King case
considers the recent decision of the Upper Tier Tribunal in favour of the Gambling Commission in its appeal in the Greene King case concerning bingo in pubs.
Licensing: Fuel on the fire
A restauranteur has recently lost an appeal over the revocation of the licence for a venue that was previously a petrol station. Philip Kolvin QC
Licensing: The cumulative impact policy in Leeds
Is Leeds’ new Cumulative Impact Policy the way forward? Paddy Whur
Licensing: Exempt lotteries and deregulation
The long-awaited relaxation of rules on exempt lotteries has finally been announced, writes Anna Mathias
Litigation: The Supreme Court on vicarious liability
Two important Supreme Court judgments concerning vicarious liability were handed down last week. Kate Richmond
Litigation: Early neutral evaluation
Changes to civil procedure rules mean greater use could be made of Early Neutral Evaluation, writes Marie-Claire O'Hara
Litigation: When experts go wrong
and Michael Fallow
report on a sorry tale from the Technology and Construction Court about when being an expert goes horribly wrong.
Management: Selling your services
deals with the question of what is permissible under the SRA's Handbook and the Legal Services Act 2007 for those local authorities looking to sell their services more widely.
Management: Shared services: key issues
LexisPSL Local Government, Peter Ware and Angelica Hymers consider the statutory powers available to local authorities to provide shared services, the risks associated with exercise of those powers, and how delivery of shared services can be achieved.
Planning: Clarity at last on 'relevant policies for the supply of housing'?
reports on a Court of Appeal ruling described as of “critical importance to national planning throughout the country”.
Planning: Two into one….
Is it lawful to charge the Community Infrastructure Levy by treating two planning permissions as a single planning permission? Christopher Cant
analyses a recent High Court ruling.
Planning: The pooling restriction and infrastructure shortfalls
considers how councils can cope with a potential infrastructure shortfall due to the pooling restriction.
Planning: EIA trumping
looks at the consequences when a planning decision was made while the Secretary of State’s EIA screening direction process was still pending.
Procurement: The digital agenda
sets out the key issues for public bodies looking to exploit the opportunities for collaboration and innovation provided by the digital agenda.
Procurement: Plus ça change…
and Tom Benjamin
give five reasons why Brexit is unlikely to spell the end of procurement regulation in the UK.
Procurement: Bidders supported by other entities
Can a contracting authority require a bidder that wants to rely on another entity’s expertise in making its bid enter into a contract with that other entity? Nathan Holden
considers the issues.
Procurement: The NHS Procurement Regulations: first case
The High Court has heard the first case considering NHS Procurement Regulations. Patrick Parkin
and Richard Binns
consider the outcome. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Procurement: Kept in suspense
looks at an early ruling in one of the first disputes where the Court has had to consider the Public Contracts Regulations 2015.
Procurement: The ESPD: what do you need to do?
The European Single Procurement Document came into force from 26 January 2016. Ruth Smith
explains what it entails and the issues that remain unresolved.
Projects: Sweating your assets
How can local authorities get more from their assets without selling off the family silver? Owen Willcox
Projects: State aid - beware compound interest!
A recent case from the European Court of Justice (CJEU) serves as a useful reminder of the risks of getting state aid wrong and the consequences of a recovery order, writes Robert Prater
Projects: Comparing project management methodologies
LexisPSL Public Law
and Andy Cooke
of PA Consulting Group compare three project management methodologies – PRINCE2®, PMBOK® and Agile.
Property: Dealing with mistakes in registered land
examines a recent High Court case involving a London borough and the mistaken inclusion of a basement within the registered title for a ground floor property.
Property: Legal costs and service charges
When it comes to the recovery of legal costs as a service charge, what has changed since the Supreme Court ruling in Arnold v Britton? Howard Lederman
Property: Real estate and smart property management
What does the 'one public estate' concept mean in practice? Clive Bleasdale
and Nathan East
set out some of the key considerations.
Property: Public law defences and sales of land
explores the availability of public law defences and promissory estoppel in the context of a contract for the sale of land.
Property: Breaking point
The Supreme Court has put an end to the confusion over break clauses, apportionment and implying contractual terms. Martin McKeague
and Emma Porritt
look at the key lessons from the ruling.
Regulatory: Contaminated land - one to watch
Stephen Tromans QC
and Victoria Hutton
provide an overview of a Part 2A Inquiry concerning a remediation notice served by a local authority.
Regulatory: Environmental damage: What does this really mean?
For the first time, the High Court has considered in detail the scope of the concept of "environmental damage" under the Environmental Liability Directive and its associated regulations. Emma Duffy
and Rebecca Roffe
report on the outcome.
Transport: TfL and roads in the capital
A High Court judge has ruled on a dispute over the extent of Transport for London’s interests in London’s roads. Charles Banner
reports on the outcome.
|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 charges.
|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.
|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.
|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.