Public Service and Local Government

A read need for subsidised housing

A read need for subsidised housing

It has become conventional wisdom that not enough housing is being built and that much more will be needed to ...
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It's no surprise concrete estates never worked

It’s no surprise concrete estates never worked

This year is the 20th anniversary of the Broadwater Farm riot which claimed the death of a policeman, Keith Blakelock, ...
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Labour activists vote to retain council housing

Labour activists vote to retain council housing

For once, this year’s Labour conference seems to have made a difference in policy. Usually, the gathering of the faithful ...
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Government dithering means local authorities should take charge of rail schemes

Government dithering means local authorities should take charge of rail schemes

What is it about this government and making decisions? Four weighty reports plopped onto my desk before the summer recess ...
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Bring back local accountability

Bring back local accountability

Another set of elections, another dismal turn-out, despite the new fangled ideas such as postal voting and other experiments. And ...
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More house construction for the South-East?

More house construction for the South-East?

There has been a surprisingly muted response to the changes in planning laws suggested recently by the Deputy Prime Ministers, ...
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Let's not forget the buses!

Let’s not forget the buses!

There are few good news stories in the world of local authorities. We are all too used to hearing of ...
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Transport Direct leaves a lot to be improved

Transport Direct leaves a lot to be improved

It seems like such a simple idea: provide all public transport users with information encompassing all the possible modes of ...
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Is a local income tax on the cards?

Is a local income tax on the cards?

Suddenly local taxation is in the news and protestors are on the streets. The doddery old couples from Devon lining ...
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Letchworth sets the standard in town planning

Letchworth sets the standard in town planning

The issue of local versus national interest has been a perennial theme surrounding local government ever since the first local ...
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Livingstone's congestion charge has wider implications

Livingstone’s congestion charge has wider implications

It is no exaggeration to say that Ken Livingstone's congestion charge has been one of the most successful innovations ever ...
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What is the Private Finance Initiative really about?

What is the Private Finance Initiative really about?

The ostensible reasons for the PFI programme are well known. It is supposed to reduce the cost of big projects ...
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Labour must do more than just tinker with council tax

Labour must do more than just tinker with council tax

It is remarkable that it has taken Labour five years to begin to address some of the iniquities of the ...
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The truth about PFI schemes

The truth about PFI schemes

The vote against the Private Finance Initiative at the recent Labour party conference is testimony to a wider unease about ...
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Local government deserves real power

Local government deserves real power

The issue of local versus national interest has been a perennial theme surrounding local government ever since the first local ...
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Residents' involvement the key to successful housing schemes

Residents’ involvement the key to successful housing schemes

In March, the last tenants in the Waltham Forest Housing Action Trust were finally relocated to new housing, a decade ...
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Can we trust Prescott's New Communities plan?

Can we trust Prescott’s New Communities plan?

It is difficult not to be a tad wary of John Prescott's New Communities scheme which is supposed to reshape ...
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