SWCouncils

Welcome

Bryony Houlden, Chief Executive, South West Councils

Welcome to the latest edition of  SWCouncilsNews – we hope you continue to find it useful.  We have also just started a SW Councils Blog which can be found on our website. We are intending to use the Blog to share useful information, highlight best practice and/or to raise awareness of the wide range of services we provide to our 41 Local Authority member organisations and the 100+ Associate Members. I know from customer feedback not everyone knows all that we do – and that is not surprising as it is very wide ranging, one minute the team might be advising on sickness absence, the next being asked to develop and support the delivery of a behavioural framework or supporting a tricky disciplinary process or helping develop quality coaching or arranging a meeting with the Secretary of State for Transport – which we are doing for the SW Councils AGM on 18 July, and so on….  Part of the reason for the wide range of provision is that as a member led organisation we try and flexibly respond to your suggestions so please keep them coming.

One of the main areas of our work is supporting Councillor Development and we are responsible in the SW for assessing that against the Member Charter Framework.  I am delighted to report that Devon County Council successfully achieved Charter Plus accreditation last month. The assessment team included our Vice Chair, Cllr Helen Holland along with me and Fay Edwards, SW Councils' Head of our Learning and Development. We were very impressed with the strong cross-party commitment to on-going development and the recent work to improve the robustness of scrutiny within the Council.   We hope to see a large number of Councillors both those long serving and newly elected at our Essential Skills for the 21st Century Councillor on 15 July.  Once again we have kept the cost very low for our members at only £45 for the whole day so we hope any Councillor who wants to attend will be able to do so – there will be a range of workshop choices as well as some short, sharp plenary sessions on the SW Syrian refugee programme, income generation and community leadership.

In addition to the C21st Councillor event we also have our annual Coaching Conference in July which regularly attracts over 100 delegates and really positive feedback and it is open to anyone with an interest in coaching The keynote speaker is the leading international expert Prof David Clutterbuck  and there are a whole range of interesting and thought provoking sessions including one on Avatars in coaching! 

As always, please do continue to let us know what you think of this newsletter or submit stories for publication, as well as ideas for future events and please keep telling us about your successes you want to share in this newsletter. 

Yours, Bryony

To find out more about our activities, you can also connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
 

 

Transport

Rail Franchising
Publication of refreshed rail franchise schedule.......

DfT releases overview of the Bus Services Bill...
 
North Somerset Council successfully bids for £415,000 from DfT...
 
South Devon Highway wins regional award ......
 

 

 
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HR Services

Consultation - reform of the off-payroll rules for personal services companies working for a public sector engager 
This consultation is about reforming the intermediaries legislation (IR35) to improve its effectiveness in the public sector...

Apprenticeships 
New Government Guidance issued .....

Local Government Pay
 
Update on local government pay ......

DWP Consultation on Capping early exit charges for members of occupational pension schemes 

Proposals to prevent people in occupational schemes facing exit charges for accessing their pensions early have been launched by ministers. Read the public consultation ......

Disclosure and Barring Service

South West Councils provides a secure online environment with our partners NEREO, to provide a speedy, economical and high quality DBS service based on absolute accuracy and efficiency that will enhance your safeguarding process. Online DBS enables organisations with a legitimate requirement to ask individuals to apply for disclosures, to gain access top this information quickly and efficiently. 

 
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Health and Wellbeing

Social prescribing for health outcomes
The challenge of the ageing population and supporting people with long-term conditions is one of the biggest our society faces.......

Tackling poor oral health in children 
The report 'Tackling poor oral health in children' is updated ......

Tell CQC now about SWAST 
CQC ask for people's views on South West Ambulance Service, NHS Foundation Trust ...... 

Online Consultation for NHS Patient Survey 
CQC consults on changes to their NHS Patient Survey Programme... 

CQC 5 Year Plan Released 
CQC releases its 2016-2021 Strategy ...... 

The Government releases its cycling and walking investment Strategy
Over £300 million will be spent over the parliament to encourage walking and cycling....

 
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Housing

Consultation - registration criteria for entry onto the register of social housing for England
This consultation is on changes proposed to the registration criteria for new entrants to reflect the removal of the regulator’s consents regime under the Housing and Planning Act 2016 ......

 
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Local Economy and Finance

Science and Technology Facilities Council
STFC contributes to new £3.9 million urban regeneration partnerships ......

Taunton Deane are about to join the list of Britain’s “Smart Places”
Free public WiFi arrives to key towns in Taunton Deane...

European funding made available to Cornwall's and the Isles of Scilly's businesses 
£10m in European funding has been made available to help support small and medium sized businesss in the area by helping to develop additional workspace....

 
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Top Stories

 

Councillors Guide 2016 
LGA publishes the Councillor Guide 2016 .....

Discoveries at Roman Baths Dig
New information on historic Roman Baths uncovered in archaeological dig...

Girls in Gangs
Comic Relief are making several grants available in the UK for multi-partner projects which can help intervene between young women and gangs, such as providing family-focused interventions and providing support in schools......

Consultation - Business rates: delivering more frequent revaluations
The government is seeking views from of stakeholders as it begins to consider how more frequent revaluations could be delivered and as it develops options for change....

Consultation Launched into Distribution of National Lottery Money 
Views sought on proposed new policy directions for the allocation of Big Lottery Funds ......

Mid Devon’s Land Charges service wins national award
Mid Devon District Council Customer satisfaction award for local authority searches...

Award for Weymouth Beach 
26 beaches in the South West win blue flag awards .....Funding boost for schools helping pupils develop character 
£6 million funds available for character grants to schools and local authorities promoting traits such as resilience and respect in children through activities...

Antibiotic awareness campaign receives national award for its community focus 
A campaign designed to help tackle antibiotic resistance by educating parents about the effective use and side effects of antibiotics, and providing effective tips for caring for children suffering from some common childhood illnesses, has just received national plaudits....

Mid Devon District Council’s Land Charges service wins national award
Senior Land Charges Officer at Mid Devon District Council, received award for ‘Best Customer Satisfaction’ for local authority searches ........

End of Bristol Solar Trial 
Local partners end successful solar power trial...

The Queen's Speech And New Bill Announcements 
The Queen sets out Bills for the next parliament....

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Environment and Energy

 

CCF logoCoastal Communities Fund


Details of the latest round of funding supporting the economic development of coastal communities have been released by the Department of Communities and Local Government .......
 

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Planning

 

Neighbourhood Planning Microsite
DCLG launches Neighbour Planning Microsite...

Mid Devon to trial brownfield register 
Council win bid to collect data on brownfield sites....

 

more news...