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ROUNDUP OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT STORIES IN THE NATIONAL PRESS

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The Guardian argues that the boundaries of the greenbelt need rethinking. While this may be unpopular, the paper em...
The Guardian argues that the boundaries of the greenbelt need rethinking. While this may be unpopular, the paper emphasises that planning is about dealing with the world as you find it.

The Daily Telegraph claims that localism has reached the most dangerous phase in the evolution of any concept, insisting that it is time to get specific about the term.

Gordon Brown will unveil plans to replace the House of Lords with a fully elected second chamber, the Guardian reports. It says Mr Brown's campaign team are trailing the idea of a 'constitutional convention' bringing in political parties, churches, trade unions and pressure groups to create a broad mandate for reform.

The industry minister Margaret Hodge has opened a new argument over council house building by saying that British-born local families should get priority for social housing over newly-arrived immigrants. Labour deputy leadership candidate John Cruddas said there was a danger of 'racialising arguments over housing allocation', rather than concentrating on the need for greater housing provision. The Independent's editorial warns Ms Hodge against merely recycling the propaganda of the far right.

Families will be made to recycle leftovers

Councils could be given powers to fine households that break recycling rules under the government waste strategy due on Thursday, the Telegraph reports. They could also be permitted to reward families that recycle most. Every family could be forced to keep a slopbucket in their home, reports The Daily Mail. Environment secretary David Miliband is expected to recommend councils provide a sealed container for food waste.

Housing packs will 'lead to chaos'

Trading standards officers claim they have insufficient cash and manpower to police the introduction of new home information packs, reported The Times on Saturday. The Trading Standards Institute also insists the£200 penalty for marketing a property without a pack is too low. Meanwhile, record numbers of homes are being put up for sale by people racing to avoid paying for HIPs, reports The Daily Mail. The Daily Express argues that political posturing is to blame for the HIPs fiasco. The paper warns that now the entire housing market will end up paying the price.

Today's editorials speculate on Gordon Brown's forthcoming premiership, highlighting the key issues to be addressed.

Focusing on the business community, the Times insists that the prime minister-to-be needs to build relationships with, and respect for, business.

Elsewhere, the Daily Express criticises the deputy leadership candidates for not having had the real political courage to challenge Gordon Brown.

On the immigration level in the UK, the Daily Mail praises Labour minister Margaret Hodge for questioning whether economic migrants who choose to live and work in Britain should automatically have the right to be housed.

Meanwhile, the Sun insists that yet again Britain's 'shameful' immigration and asylum 'shambles' has been exposed for all to see. The paper warns that letting immigration 'run riot' only plays into the hands of extremists.

Regarding proposals to alter the Freedom of Information Act, the Daily Telegraph calls upon the Lords to 'throw out' the amendment to the Freedom of Information Act.

Meanwhile, the Independent insists that politicians should focus on raising standards in state schools and making the education system more equitable, instead of getting 'mired' in a row about grammar schools.

Elsewhere, the Independent notes that concerns about the erosion of civil liberties have even been raised by the police in recent weeks.

Other stories of interest

The Equal Opportunities Commission has admitted that it pays male staff on average nearly£2,000 more than female workers, reports the News of the World.

Children's commissioner Sir Al Aynsley-Green has been criticised for spending£93,000 of taxpayers' money on a re-branding exercise, reports The Mail on Sunday.

Lawyers are expecting a spate of compensation claims from migrant workers after three Polish women won an employment tribunal in Scotland, reported The Times on Saturday.

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