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Standards in public life and a future local government bill will dominate the national agenda of the Association of...
Standards in public life and a future local government bill will dominate the national agenda of the Association of Council Secretaries and Solicitors over the next two years.

Incoming ACSeS president Felix Hetherington, clerk to the Isle of Wight Council, will make the Nolan committee's recommendations on local government his main priority during his presidential year.

Richmond upon Thames LBC head of legal services Richard Mellor, who becomes the association's new first vice-president, will focus on the government's promised local government bill.

ACSeS will pay particular attention to proposals to introduce a power of community initiative for local authorities, measures to clarify the powers of councils to trade, public safety duties and plans to introduce annual elections.

Mr Mellor said that a power of community initiative would help councils reflect the 'strong local pride' felt in many parts of the country.

Mr Mellor said that ACSeS would also seek involvement in the debate on the government of London, which he said would be the first test of regional government in England.

On internal ACSeS matters Mr Mellor said the association was committed to enhancing training opportunities for members, improving media relations and making use of Internet communication.

ACSeS will also look to build new strategic alliances with other professional organisations and commercial links with the private sector, he revealed.

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