Agenda and minutes

Executive Advisory Board - Thursday, 13th September, 2018 2.15 pm

Venue: Westminster Room, 8th Floor, 18 Smith Square, London, SW1P 3HZ. View directions

Contact: Alexander Saul  Email: / 020 7664 3232

No. Item


Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest.


Brexit Update pdf icon PDF 106 KB


Cllr Kevin Bentley, Chairman of the LGA’s Brexit Task Force, introduced the report. He emphasised the urgent need for the Government to clarify whether EU nationals would be eligible to stand for election and/or have voting rights in the local elections in May 2019.


Confirmation had been given that, under a no deal scenario, the Government would guarantee structural funds to local government from the Treasury. The LGA had made the vital but more general point that local authorities could not take any additional burdens from new or anticipated responsibilities after Brexit without new resources.


Cllr Bentley highlighted that there would be issues distinct to each local authority area and advised Council Leaders to contact their local MPs with any concerns.




The LGA Executive noted the update.




A letter requesting clarification on the issue of EU nationals voting and standing in local elections in May 2019 be sent to the Secretary of State, and a media strategy on the issue also be considered. (Ian Hughes).



Membership, Terms of Reference and Appointments to Governance Structures pdf icon PDF 146 KB

Additional documents:




The LGA Executive noted:


·         The Executive’s membership for 2018/2019.

·         The Executive’s Terms of Reference; and

·         Appointments to the LGA’s governance structures for 2018/2019.


LGA Business Plan pdf icon PDF 115 KB

Additional documents:


Mark Lloyd, Chief Executive, introduced the LGA’s draft Business Plan for 2018/19 which had been updated to reflect the Associations’ latest priorities and work plans. In particular he highlighted that ‘Funding for Local Government’ and ‘Housing’ were now separate priorities, whilst ‘Inclusive Growth, Jobs and Devolution’ had been grouped together. Mark drew to Members’ attention to item 3 on the notes of the previous day’s Leadership Board which summarised the Leadership Boards comments on the draft Business Plan.


In the discussion which followed the following points were raised:

·         That the overall tone of the business plan should be stronger and more positive

·         That there should be reference to child refugees and to children’s mental health.

·         That unlike the precept for adult social care there had been no additional funding for children’s services and these pressures should be reflected in the business plan.

·         That the importance of councils being able to raise funding locally should be included.

·         That the business plan should be reordered to bring ‘Adult Social Care and Health’ and ‘Children, Education and Schools’ to the top of the agenda along with ‘Funding for Local Government’.

·         That the housing priority should be expanded to encompass creating great places to live, with additional objectives to cover the wider infrastructure, homelessness, the importance of a well-resourced planning system and the need for greater ability to influence the rented sector.

·         That consideration be given to merging/bringing closer together the Devolution and Brexit priorities.

·         That consideration be given to a new Reputation campaign to restore public trust in councils running public services.




That the LGA Business Plan 2018/19 be amended to reflect members’ comments and responsibility for signing off the final version be delegated to the Chairman and Group Leaders.




Business Plan to be amended to reflect comments from the Leadership Board and LGA Executive, and to be submitted for final sign off by the Chairman and Group Leaders (Claire Holloway).



LGA Draft Response to Local Government Finance Settlement 2019 to 2020: Technical Consultation pdf icon PDF 132 KB

Additional documents:


Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the Resources Board, introduced the report which set out the key points in the Government’s technical consultation on the 2019/20 local government finance settlement, and presented the LGA’s draft response to the consultation for comment. Following comments from the Leadership Board and the LGA Executive, the draft response to the consultation would also be considered by the Resources Board on 14 September prior to submission.


It was noted that the response had been drafted along existing policy lines and in particular drew attention to the funding gap facing local government in 2019/20 and 2025, and the lack of clarity for local authorities from April 2020, as the outcome of the Spending Review was not yet known. For councils who were impacted by negative RSG, the consultation did include a proposal to cancel the adjustment to top-ups and tariffs, meaning that negative RSG would be paid for by central government resources. However there were also proposals to increase the New Homes Bonus threshold based on levels of housing growth; the response commented that the threshold should not be increased, as this could mean that housebuilding schemes and other projects could be stalled when this was such a vital issue facing the country.


In the discussion that followed, the following points were raised;


·         A concern was raised regarding the Negative Revenue Support Grant being potentially cancelled, Cllr Watts confirmed that this seemed very likely at this stage;

·         A concern was raised that the severe lack of clarity while the outcome of the Spending Review was not yet known would have a detrimental effect on local authorities attempting to set their budget plans ahead of 2020; and

·         The Board were informed that Councils in Wales are facing a further 1 per cent cut in their total budget, which the WLGA is challenging.




Subject to members’ comments, the LGA Executive agreed that the LGA’s response to the consultation be forwarded to the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.




Officers to update the draft response to reflect comments made by the LGA Executive and Resources Board and forward the final response to MHCL.



Business Rates Retention and Fair Funding pdf icon PDF 161 KB


Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the Resources Board, introduced the report which provided an update on progress on the Fair Funding Review and Business Rates Retention reform, and the LGA’s work on these, since the previous meeting in July. The Fair Funding Review consultation was expected any time up until the provisional settlement. A consultation on business rates retention is expected later in the year. On Business Rates Retention, the Government had published a prospectus inviting bids to become 75 per cent retention pilots 2019/20. An event was held earlier in the month for authorities who were looking to become pilot areas.


In the discussion which followed a concerns were raised about the complexity of business rates retention and the current needs formulae.




The LGA leadership Board noted the update and agreed to the procedure for signing off the transition model and the business rates retention model, as outlined in the report. 



Note of the last Leadership Board meeting - Tabled




The LGA Executive agreed the minutes of the Leadership Board meeting held on 12 September 2018.


Note of last LGA Executive meeting pdf icon PDF 112 KB




The LGA Executive agreed the minutes of the previous meeting held on 19 July 2018.



Spending Review update and Autumn Budget submission


Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the Resources Board, introduced the report which provided an update on the LGA’s planned activity ahead of the 2019 Spending Review and asked for Members’ views regarding the outline content of the LGA’s 2018 Autumn Budget submission.




The LGA Executive noted the report and commented on the 2018 Autumn Budget submission outline as set out in the report.




2018 Autumn Budget submission to be updated in line with Members’ comments following consideration by the Leadership Board and the LGA Executive. (Sarah Pickup).