The local government finance system in England is currently going through significant change. Since the 2010 Comprehensive Spending Review there have been significant ongoing reductions in local government funding that are expected to continue until the 2020s. The highly-centralised system of funding, with central government grants allocated on the basis of councils’ relative spending need, is now being replaced by a system where councils as a group are self-funding and individual councils bear far more spending and revenue risk. The aim of all this - as expressed in the Localism Act - is to give councils stronger financial incentives to grow local economies and address underlying spending demand pressures through the localisation of business rates, phasing out of revenue support grant and increased commercialisation. Decentralisation will be incomplete though – as central government will keep a tight rein on councils’ ability to increase council tax and business rates.
In Scotland and Wales, little has changed so far, but the next few years could see significant reforms to local tax bases.
Local authorities have a new focus on value for money. We believe that value for money is most likely to be achieved where there is a focus on the needs and aspirations of customers and a rigorous review of systems and costs.
We have recently assisted our clients with management advice and assistance on:
Or download our brochure on Management Consulting Services for Local Authorities by clicking HERE
AWICS is assisting the Local Government Association with its peer reviews by providing expert advice on its financial diagnostic reports. Adrian Waite has also acted as lead associate consultant in a financial peer review at Slough Borough Council.
AWICS also worked with TRL Insight to develop Fair Funding Review modelling tools for the Local Government Association. These allow the LGA and its member authorities to model the effects of different options for the future funding of local government as part of the government's Fair Funding Review.
Local Authority accounting and budgeting is a specialised area and our management consultants are able to offer specialist advice.
Recent clients include:
We also advise other organisations on local authority finance including legal practices and trade unions. For more information please clcik HERE
Local authorities undertaking service transformation usually produce business plans and business cases. Our management consultants are able to assist in the production or evaluation of business plans and business cases for local authorities; or to provide a critique on behalf of a partner organisation.
Recent clients include:
For more information about business planning please click HERE
It is essential that managers and councillors have a working knowledge of how local authority finance works.
As well as our regional seminars and in-house courses we are able to evaluate your training needs and design a training programme to suit your needs. We recently provided this service for Carlisle City Council.
For further information on our regional seminars please follow the links below:
For further information on in-house training opportunities please follow the link below:
We recently assisted two legal practices by providing expert witness reports for judicial reviews of local authority budgets for adult social care. In two cases the budgets were found to be unlawful. For more information please click HERE
More information on local authority finance is freely available on our website. Please follow the links below:
One of Slough Borough Council's offices.
Adrian Waite was lead associate in a Local Government Association financial peer review for the Council.
More Information about Local Authority Finance
For more information about our seminar: 'All You Want to Know about Local Authority Finance' please click HERE
For more information about in-house training in local government finance, please click HERE
For more information about management consulting advice and assistance for local government, please click HERE
For more information about our publication: 'All You Want to Know about Local Authority Finance' please click HERE
To download our 'Public Services News' newsletter, please click HERE
To download briefing papers on local authority finance, please click HERE