Conservative shadow local government secretary Caroline Spelman has said some aspects of the poll tax could be revived in an effort to ease the council tax burden on pensioners. They do not have firm proposals yet and are waiting for the government to publish proposals on council tax in July (The Times, p29).
Joan Collins to support the UK Independence Party in 10 June elections
A YouGov internet poll puts the UKIP in third place - with 18%, ahead of the Lib Dems with 15% - and Joan Collins is backing the party. Their MEP is Robert Kilroy-Silk and Ms Collins joins other celebrities including actor Edward Fox, Sir Patrick Moore and former racing champion Stirling Moss (The Guardian, p10).
House prices rises in the north of England suggest north-south divide narrowing
New figures from the land registry show that some houses on Tyneside are being sold for the same as their London equivalents. The figures confirm the view of some property analysts that the gap could actually close later this year (The Guardian, p16).
Council backs patient's stance on 'living will'
Social workers and carers employed by Durham CC have been told they must concede to a seriously ill woman's wish not to receive treatment. Social workers and carers must stand by and do nothing, according the Daily Mail report, because Durham CC has made a landmark ruling that upholds the woman's wishes, laid out in a 'living will' (The Mail, p16).
New speed trap cameras to be introduced to trap speeding drivers
Chief constable of north Wales Richard Brunstrom has announced 1,000 new speed trap cameras as more forces join up to the Safety Camera P artnership scheme (Daily Mail, p17).
Councils enforce guidelines that parents can only take one child swimming at a time
Around 20 councils are enforcing guidelines saying that parents can only take one child, aged under four, to a swimming pool if there is only one adult. This is to avoid being sued in the event of an accident. 7,500 parents have joined a protest group, called Right to Swim, as a response (Daily Express, p24).
Sunderland City Council accused of hounding metric martyr Steve Thoburn
Sunderland City Council stands accused of pestering Steve Thoburn in the European courts over his refusal to serve his market stall customers in metric measurements. Mr Thoburn has since died. The Local Government Association is having a final crackdown on traders who still sell in imperial measurements ( The Sun, p11).
Public bodies try to hidepoor performance
The supplement looks at a cross-section of reports in the trade press on what it calls 'creative responses to official requirements' (The Times' Public Agenda, p3).
Council backs claims against practice of hanging washing lines in Skipton alleys
North Yorkshire CC are backing resident David Painter in his campaign against the practice of putting out washing lines in alleys behind terraced houses. He says the washing lines are causing an obstruction. The council say he is legally in the right and have drafted a letter to residents (The Times 2, p4&5).