targets and a greater emphasis on involving local partners within and beyond
local government to improve services for local people were revealed as two
main developments in future Local Public Service Agreements today.
At a joint Local Government Association and ODPM conference, local government minister Nick Raynsford launchedthe government's guidelines for pilot
authorities for the second generation of LPSAs - individually agreed targets
between a council and central government to improve services in its
In an attempt to build on the successes of the first round of LPSAs,
launched in 2000, the second stage will allow councils the flexibility to
negotiate around topics which are most important to their area, rather than
have to fit around national targets.
Councils will be encouraged to work closely with their local partners, such
as Local Strategic Partnerships, the police and primary care trusts to agree
a target which they can work together on to deliver real improvements in
There will also be a bigger role to play for district councils who will be
expected to be one of the main partners in LPSAs in shire counties. Second
generation agreements are unlikely to be agreed by central government if
they do not substantially involve district authorities.
Sandy Bruce-Lockhart, vice-chairman of the Local Government Association
said: 'Community safety, housing, health improvement and education are among
the major concerns for local residents. These issues are both complex and
inter-related. They have to be addressed in strong partnerships across the
public sector and with the voluntary, private and community sectors. The
Public Service Agreement round two will empower local councils to lead in
new public/private sector partnerships to tackle these vital quality-o f-life
'In PSA2, local government is committed to setting ambitious targets which
are locally owned. We now need all departments across central government to
share this commitment and award the freedoms and flexibilities we need to
deliver improvements to our local communities.'
Since the launch of LPSAs, 1,155 targets have been agreed between councils
and central government, and 1,000 freedoms have been granted.
The LGA is urging local authorities to become even more ambitious with the
targets they set and the freedoms they ask for in the next round.
Changes to the second generation of LPSAs include:
- Establishing as a starting point for LPSAs an agreement between the
council, its partners and government on the local priorities for
- There is no national menu of targets from which LPSA targets must be
- There is scope for LPSAs to be drawn up covering a wider area than just
one local authority
- A greater role for district councils as key partners in LPSAs
- The opportunity for local authorities to explore more ambitious and
1. Copies of the LGA's publication 'Building on success' which outlines the
LGA's vision for the second generation of LPSAs is available on the
publications section of the LGA website. This also features case studies of
2. The guidance document for the second generation of LPSAs will be launched
at the conference. Copies will be available from the ODPM website at