Austerity and the shortfall in funding

In the past 18 months, the committee has developed guidance for our members, assisted in informing national policy and worked with stakeholders on diversity, funding, and inspections.

“Our members should make sure that constituents are aware that local councils face unprecedented pressures

The LGA’s annual fire conference was held recently in Brighton, where the newly adopted LGA recommendations to the Hackitt Review on building safety were announced.

We called for the height threshold at which automatic fire suppression systems, such as sprinklers, are required in new residential buildings in England to be lowered to 18 metres, down from the Hackitt recommendation of 30 metres.

During our conference, the Chancellor published the Spring Statement, offering limited pots of money, each dependent on Parliament reaching a consensus on Brexit, and nowhere near enough to cover the shortfall in funding facing local government.

Setting budgets has focused many members’ minds on the pressures and shortfall of finance, whereby – between 2010 and 2020 – local authorities will have lost 60p in every £1. Approaching the elections in May, our members should make sure that constituents are aware and realise that local councils face unprecedented pressures because of the results of austerity.

Our members are continuing to make a significant impact at both national and local level, and I wish everyone standing in May the very best of luck.

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