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BYERS' FIRST LGA SPEECH IS THE MOST POSITIVE YET SAY LGA LEADERS

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Stephen Byers' first post election speech* to the LGA was one of the most positive ever from a secretary of state t...
Stephen Byers' first post election speech* to the LGA was one of the most positive ever from a secretary of state to the association, its leaders said.
LGA chair Jeremy Beecham said on Friday: 'This week we heard from several local authorities about the burden of best value bureaucracy - particuarly on district councils.
'I am pleased that the secretary of state used today's speech to underline that ministers are listening. I welcome his commitment to cut back the red tape and work with the LGA to progress the deregulation of local government.
'There is much evidence of a more mature partnership between the spheres of local and central government. Since the election we have received a very positive response from ministers to the LGA's new approach and policy agenda, identifying six key areas where councils are committed to making a difference for their communities.
'The Local Government White Paper expected later this year, is a vital opportunity to deliver the freedoms and flexibilities that local councils need to help them restore a sense of ownership and engagement in our democratic processes, and the belief that people and their elected representatives can make a difference to the future of their communities', he said.
* see LGCnet
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