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ROUNDUP OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT NEWS IN THE NATIONAL NEWSPAPERS

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COUNCILS WILL LOSE CENTRAL FUNDING IF THEY FAIL TO TACKLE YOBS...
COUNCILS WILL LOSE CENTRAL FUNDING IF THEY FAIL TO TACKLE YOBS

Prime minister Tony Blair will warn councils today that their funding will be cut if they fail to adequately tackle antisocial behaviour, reports The Times (pg8).

Plans are due to be approved by a Cabinet committee today making it mandatory from next April for every local authority to have a formal strategy in place to build respect and deal with bad behaviour. Each council's record will be taken into account when Whitehall fixes its revenue support grant.

Mr Blair will chair the meeting of the committee today, which will be open to the media and hear from five frontline witnesses, including a local government official and police officer. PM hears 'evidence' from Respect experts

Shadow home secretary David Davis said getting tough on crime relied on tough policing, tough sentences and competent management of the Home Office.

POLICE FEAR COMMUNITY BACKLASH OVER EAST LONDON RAID

Police have intensified their planning for dealing with community anger if it turns out latest intelligence on a suspected terrorists attack was wrong, reports The Guardian (pg1).

Chemical devices feared to have been stored at an east London house raided on Friday may never have existed, sources admit. Local police chiefs have been touring local mosques as part of an effort at 'community reassurance'.

The Daily Mail reports (pg6) that leaflets questioning police actions were being circulated by the Respect party. Outgoing leader of the Muslim Council of Britain, Sir Iqbal Sacranie said he could understand why the scale of the raid had enraged local people.

The incoming leader, Muhammad Abdul Bari, has pledged to engage with young people in mosques and other institutions as volunteers and trustees. He told The Guardian (pg5) this strategy could be one way to turn young Muslims away from extremism. Mr Bari is chairman of the East London mosque and works as a special needs specialist in Tower Hamlets.

ASSEMBLY REPORT URGES IMMEDIATE IMPROVEMENTS FOR COPING WITH FUTURE ATTACKS

Emergency services responding to the July 7 attacks were hampered by poor radio communications and equipment, reports The Guardian (pg4).

The London Assembly today calls for immediate improvements to cope with future attacks. Its review into the way services coped with the bombings found radio communications were restricted between police, fire and ambulance workers; some hospitals close to the scenes were not immediately alerted; and procedures established by the Civil Contingencies Act were not followed, meaning many survivors were told to go home instead of taking them to a controlled area afterwards.

CAMERON SEEKS TO END TORY OPPOSITION TO PUBLIC SECTOR

David Cameron will radically shift the Conservatives' approach as he attempts to ditch the party's image of being instinctively opposed to the public sector, reports the Financial Times (pg4).

He willconcede that the Tories have been wrong to give the impression that there are too many public sector workers and those staff are lazy and inefficient. Mr Cameron will add that the long running Tory argument that anything to do with the private sector is automatically regarded as good, is mistaken.

HIGH COURT PETITIONED TO RERUN COVENTRY ELECTION

An electoral petition is calling on a local election result in Coventry to be declared void because of 'corrupt practice', reports The Times (pg4).

The petition urges the High Court to remove 10 votes from the tally, because voters were believed to have been out of the country at the time they were recorded in polling stations.

The Conservatives won the ward, Foleshill, by six votes after a recount, the first time the Tories had run Coventry since the 1970s.

There is no suggestion that the Conservative candidate did anything wrong.

West Midlands Police has been called in to investigate.

'BED TAX' COULD PUT 32,000 JOBS AT RISK

Tourism minister Shaun Woodward will be warned this month that proposals for a bed tax could cut seriously hurt the industry, reports The Guardian (pg27).

The Tourism Alliance believes the tax, raised by Michael Lyons in his review of local government funding, could cut revenues for hotels, B&Bs and caravan parks by£1.3bn, threatening 32,000 jobs.

The alliance says many local authority tourism departments oppose the tax because of the potential negative impact.

HEADTEACHER IMPROVES PERFORMANCE BY CONFISCATING COMPUTERS

A headteacher has personally confiscated computers, Xboxes and Playstations from the homes of pupils, reports The Daily Telegraphy (pg5).

As a result, academic standards have risen because students are less tired from staying up late at night playing.

Duncan Harper, head of New Woodlands school in Bromley, south London, asks for parents' permission first. He has removed equipment from nine children in four years.

OVER-65s ARE TRUE ECO-WARRIERS

People aged over 65 care more about the environment that young people do, reports The Daily Telegraph (pg9).

The majority of the older age group regularly recycle waste, choose showers over baths and turn off the tap while they clean their teeth.

The Yougov survey of more than 2,000 people was carried out for energy firm npower.

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