LGC Summit 2011

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Local economic development: the contribution of very local government

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LGC Summit 2011

  1. 1. Justin Griggs Head of Policy & Development LGC Summit 2011 Local economic development: the contribution of very local government
  2. 2. Who are we, what do we do? <ul><li>Recognised national representative and support body for local (parish & town) councils in England (and community and town councils in Wales) </li></ul><ul><li>Provide services, support and information in areas such as legal, policy and training </li></ul><ul><li>Work with government and other stakeholders to promote, support and develop the role of local councils in communities and local government </li></ul><ul><li>Flag wavers for very local government </li></ul><ul><li>But without the funding the LGA enjoys! </li></ul>
  3. 3. Successive Government view of parish councils <ul><li>An established and valued form of local democracy and service delivery </li></ul><ul><li>Increasing role in urban areas </li></ul><ul><li>Build on the existing local council structure </li></ul><ul><li>Improve its capacity to deliver better services and represent the community’s interests </li></ul><ul><li>Has many powers already but how boost these </li></ul><ul><li>Principal authorities can delegate additional functions and budgets to a local council </li></ul>
  4. 4. The very local government and community action model <ul><li>9000 local councils in England, £500m+ expenditure </li></ul><ul><li>80,000 councillors, elected and co-opted, 30,000 staff </li></ul><ul><li>15 million people covered by local councils, 33% of population </li></ul><ul><li>Diverse sector, smallest covering <200, largest >80,000, urban and rural </li></ul><ul><li>Legal structure, but with extensive powers (and duties) </li></ul><ul><li>Over 200 new parish councils created since 1997 </li></ul><ul><li>Not always the answer, but informal partnerships may come and go </li></ul>
  5. 5. Sevenoaks Town Council, Kent <ul><li>Took over running Stag Community Arts Centre to help develop the local economy </li></ul><ul><li>Increased footfall (20k visitors a month) and positive impact on shops restaurants, bars, car parking </li></ul><ul><li>Set up a job club to give free advice and help </li></ul><ul><li>Initiated Business Show in 2010, with two being held in 2011 </li></ul><ul><li>Worked with chamber of trade to introduce monthly networking events for local businesses (so popular venue moved from café to the Stag) </li></ul><ul><li>Future jobs fund put 13 young people into paid employment </li></ul><ul><li>Modern apprentice scheme </li></ul><ul><li>Use of local businesses and prompt payment policy </li></ul><ul><li>Christmas lights and related activities </li></ul><ul><li>Dialogue with chamber of trade on BID </li></ul>
  6. 6. Oswestry Town Council, Shropshire <ul><li>Owns Smithfield site of 37 acres leased to auctioneers & facilitated £58m development incl supermarket, retail, cinema, commercial lets, food outlets </li></ul><ul><li>Retains ownership of land to generate capital receipt and proerty rents </li></ul><ul><li>Set up regeneration forum with Shropshire Council </li></ul><ul><li>Leading £75K scheme to promote B&Bs to increase provision </li></ul><ul><li>Working with Shropshire Council on Oswestry app – what’s on, jobs, council news offers etc </li></ul><ul><li>Leading development of neighbourhood plan </li></ul><ul><li>Empty shops scheme installing art </li></ul>
  7. 7. Bodmin Town Council, Cornwall <ul><li>Buying and redeveloping grade 2 listed Shire Hall into Tourist Information Centre and heritage centre </li></ul><ul><li>Last 3 years centre dealt with over 200,000 enquiries, value of direct accommodation bookings in 2009/2010 at £50k </li></ul><ul><li>Working with traders on fortnightly local produce market in town centre </li></ul><ul><li>Owns and manages CCTV and work with Police on community safety initiatives </li></ul><ul><li>Heritage Day, St. Piran’s Day and other events bringing people into town </li></ul><ul><li>Imrpoved links with Chamber of Commerce and Industry and also Bodmin Economic Forum </li></ul><ul><li>Investing in parks and open spaces </li></ul>
  8. 8. Dunstable Town Council, Bedfordshire <ul><li>Current corporate priority to help regenerate the town </li></ul><ul><li>Large scale events programme and Shop Dunstable initiative </li></ul><ul><li>Working with Central Bedfordshire Council on new £3m football complex </li></ul><ul><li>Taking over management of market, with revitalisation plans and investment </li></ul><ul><li>Taking on public toilets at cost of £35k </li></ul><ul><li>Gained Green Flag award for both town centre gardens </li></ul><ul><li>Developing new £200k skateboard park </li></ul><ul><li>Role in development of town Masterplan and delivery </li></ul><ul><li>Leading campaign for A5-M1 link road awaiting Government decision </li></ul>
  9. 9. Newbury Town Council, Berkshire <ul><li>Supports Town Centre Partnership and helped turn into Community Interest Company </li></ul><ul><li>Supporting BID project </li></ul><ul><li>Provides Christmas lights and associated events </li></ul><ul><li>Investment in local environmental quality such as floral displays </li></ul><ul><li>Invests in public toilets </li></ul><ul><li>Supports and provides venue for weekly job club </li></ul><ul><li>Buying local policy </li></ul>
  10. 10. Other examples <ul><li>Hatfield Town Council: match funds £15k per year towards Town Centre Co-ordinator post and events </li></ul><ul><li>Waltham Abbey Town Council: involved in Olympics legacy committee </li></ul><ul><li>Maldon Town Council: set up Maldon Business Association to support economic vitality </li></ul><ul><li>Ivybridge Town Council: Watermark events and conference venue (library, 14 business units, IT suite, café, multi prurpose space) </li></ul>
  11. 11. Talking points/issues <ul><li>Localism Bill </li></ul><ul><li>referendums on increases in council tax </li></ul><ul><li>general power of competence </li></ul><ul><li>statutory neighbourhood plans (local councils & forums) </li></ul><ul><li>councillor conduct (predetermination, interest, codes) </li></ul><ul><li>Financial reforms – share of CiL, New Homes bonus, Business Rate? </li></ul><ul><li>Seat at table in strategic economic policy setting </li></ul><ul><li>Impact of principal authorities investing less in non-statutory services </li></ul><ul><li>Relationships with principal authorities and commitment to realising and unlocking potential </li></ul>
  12. 12. Further information and stuff: www.nalc.gov.uk [email_address] www.nalcjustin.wordpress.com Follow me on Twitter…@JustinGriggs

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