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Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
Paul Martin on regulation v2
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Paul Martin on regulation v2

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Presentation from Paul Martin, Chief Executive of Sutton Council, on regulation, sector-led support, and the challenges of 'the Big Society'

Presentation from Paul Martin, Chief Executive of Sutton Council, on regulation, sector-led support, and the challenges of 'the Big Society'

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  • The FSA’s budget was increased by 16.5% for the current financial year – nearly £65m more to better identify and mitigate risk, supervision and enforcement
  • The FSA’s budget was increased by 16.5% for the current financial year – nearly £65m more to better identify and mitigate risk, supervision and enforcement
  • Conservative manifesto – we will scrap ring fencing so funding can be spent on local priorities; we will scrap the hundreds of process targets Labour have imposed on councils
  • Devolved budgets e.g. Sutton’s six local committees Open data – gritting bins
  • Transcript

    • 1. Achieving a better balance between regulation and sector-led improvement Paul Martin
    • 2. The paradox of regulation in the UK
      • Since 1997 there has been a focus on regulation as the prime way of driving improvement in local government (£2bn a year)
      • But it’s been the financial sector where there’s been a concurrent shift to greater self-regulation, where things have gone horribly wrong
      • There’s always a balance to be struck between external and self-regulation and the key thing is getting that balance right
      “ In retrospect regulation of the banks should have been tougher. I don’t think we got the balance fully right.” Ed Balls, April, 2010
    • 3. Does central government need more regulation?
      • “ Mandarins demanded written orders to implement decisions they opposed and submitted unprecedented number of protests.” The Guardian, 18 May 2010
      • Ministers overruled civil servants on spending plans on at least four occasions between January and May this year.
      • Advice from officials was ignored on a further nine occasions in 2009. This compares with just five occasions in the previous three years.
      • Three quarters of the objections were on ‘value for money’ grounds.
      • The objections showed "there was some unhappiness about spending decisions.”
      • Jonathan Baume, First Division Association
    • 4. Are we beyond the tipping point?
      • There has been a consensus for some time that the current balance in local government is wrong
      • Government has nationalised, regulated and micro-managed local government
      • The overall cost of local government regulation is £2billion (NAO)
      • The coalition government is committed to ‘ the radical devolution of power and greater financial autonomy to local government and community groups ’
      • “ We will end the era of top down government … cut local government inspection and abolish the CAA”
      • The Coalition – our programme for government, 20 th May 2010
    • 5. Reducing the burden
      • BVPIs, CPA, CAA, LPSAs, LAAs, - these acronyms and the associated stars and flags have dominated our thinking, if not the public’s
      • Regulation has encouraged councils to become risk-averse, compliant and pragmatic
      • Now in the context of budget cuts, there’s a need for strong local leadership - political judgements based on locality rather than star rating
    • 6. Five ways to achieve a better balance
      • Councils articulating distinctive policy agendas
      • ‘ Big Society’ forms of accountability
      • Stronger community leadership
      • Skilling-up staff
      • Shifting resources from regulation to building community capacity
    • 7. Articulating distinctive policy agendas
      • Regulation has often been about central government seeking re-assurance that councils are delivering against national standards and priorities
      • Key lines of enquiry prescribe what constitutes ‘good services’ in enormous detail
      • Instead what we need is for councils to develop policies rooted in and authentic to the needs and aspirations of the locality
      • That means designing services ourselves with local users, offering greater choice and discretion
      • We should recognise, and in Graham Swift’s phrase, ‘celebrate the inescapable locality of existence’
      • The ‘postcode lottery’ should become the ‘postcode opportunity’
    • 8. Developing ‘Big Society’ forms of accountability
      • The current regulatory framework is based on a model of state provision; ensuring people’s entitlements are being met
      • The ‘big society’ emphasises social responsibility and radical devolution rather than state guarantees
      • Improvement will be driven through different types of accountability like
        • Personalisation, choice and control
        • Transferring ownership of community assets
        • Participatory budgeting
        • Greater use of the market, outsourcing and trading
        • Open data: helping residents become ‘armchair critics’
    • 9. Demonstrating stronger community leadership
      • Community strategies based around local priorities not national indicators
      • Developing partnership infrastructures more proportionate to local needs
      • Taking on new roles e.g. Essex post offices
      • More mayors
      • Councils taking responsibility for high profile failures rather than ministers
      • St Helier festival, 2009
    • 10. Capacity building within the sector
      • Staff will be using their knowledge and experience to shape services rather than working to key lines of enquiry
      • Councillors as active contributors and community assets within town and county halls
      • Employ more young people, apprentices and graduates
      • New forms of delivery: social enterprises and co-operatives
      • Talent management will be a higher priority
    • 11. Capacity building in the community
      • We are becoming increasingly focused on longer-term outcomes involving lifestyle changes (obesity, smoking, healthy eating, exercise)
      • Tackling these issues isn’t about better regulation, it’s about shifts in behaviour, prevention rather than cure
      • And it’s not only about individual choices, it’s about how communities of place and communities of interest can play more substantive roles
      • Some examples
      • Community communicators in Barking & Dagenham, Bexley and Sutton
      • Smarter Travel Sutton: 6% reduction in car use, 75% increase in cycling
      • Sutton Life Centre – positive activities for young people
      • Libraries staffed by local volunteers
      • Young Foundation – Guide to Behaviour Change
    • 12. It’s later than we think
      • Many councils – councillors and officers – have known nothing but subservience to the national state.
      • We need to replace compliance with innovation, obedience with experimentation, bureaucracy with dynamism
      • “ Doing the right things” not “doing things the right way”
      • Can we occupy the space available to us, or will we wait for national guidance?

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