Agenda and minutes

Executive Advisory Board - Thursday, 18th October, 2018 1.45 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.


The Chairman congratulated Members for all their hard work in representing the LGA at their Party conferences.


Housing Revenue Account caps pdf icon PDF 19 KB


The Chairman introduced the report and highlighted that the Prime Minister’s announcement at the Conservative Party Conference that the HRA borrowing cap would be removed was a significant victory for the LGA. This had been an LGA priority and focus of sustained lobbying since the cap was introduced in 2012. The LGA would continue to work with the Treasury and MHCLG on the removal of the cap, and it was anticipated that more details would be presented as part of the Chancellor’s Budget.




The LGA Executive noted the report.



Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel pdf icon PDF 170 KB


Claire Holloway, Head of Corporate Services, introduced the final report of the Independent Remuneration Panel (IRP), chaired by Lord Best. Lord Best had chaired the Panel since 2009.


Overall, the Panel had concluded that the LGA’s Scheme of Members’ Allowances and Expenses was reasonable and appropriate, but had made five recommendations which were set out in the report.


Regarding the proposed day rate payment for Members on workforce employer bodies, it was highlighted that in previous years these meetings had been more frequent. If the frequency of meetings increased again in future it might be necessary to review these allowances again. It was also highlighted that Members currently received no remuneration for membership of European employer bodies, and this would be clarified in the amended scheme.


The LGA Leadership Board had received the IRP’s report the previous day and recommended that, as the 2018/19 meeting cycle had already begun, the agreed changes should be implemented from the start of the next cycle in September 2019.


A view was expressed that the inclusion of a parental pay policy would be required before moving forwards with the proposed changes.




The LGA Executive:


1.    Thanked the Independent Review Panel for their work and accepted the conclusions set out in the report; and


2.    Agreed the five recommendations of the Panel – that the LGA;


2.1  Amends its Member role descriptions to show the anticipated weekly time commitment in hours rather than in days.


2.2  Amends the role descriptions of vice chairs to specify that vice chairs are expected to “provide peer support and mentoring to individual councillors and groups of councillors” as part of their core responsibilities. Up to 10 further formal peer days may be paid at the standard day rate.


2.3  Adds the Chair of the Fire Services Management Committee to the list of positions for which travel expenses are reimbursed.


2.4  Replaces the special responsibility allowance paid to members of the Workforce Employer Bodies with the Members’ Day Rate and brings those appointments into the main LGA scheme of allowances.


2.5 Replaces the current carers’ allowance of £7.83 per hour (equivalent to the national minimum wage) with the Living Wage and London Living Wage.


3.    Commissioned the preparation of a parental pay policy for inclusion in the Scheme of Members' Allowances and Expenses, and delegated to the Chairman and Group Leaders responsibility for agreeing the policy.




Officers to incorporate a parental pay policy into the LGA's current scheme of Members' allowances and expenses, which is to be agreed by LGA Political Group Leaders (Claire Holloway).



Appendix 1 - Report of IRP pdf icon PDF 173 KB


Appendix 2 - Employer Side Bodies pdf icon PDF 133 KB


Appendix 3 - Role descriptions of LGA Vice-Chairs pdf icon PDF 106 KB


Brexit pdf icon PDF 121 KB


Cllr Kevin Bentley, Chairman of the LGA’s Brexit Task Force updated the Executive on the work the LGA was undertaking to address the opportunities and risks of Brexit for councils.


Cllr Bentley reported that structural funding had been secured through to 2020. There would now be a consultation on the UK Prosperity Fund which was worth £5.4 billion to local government. Cllr Bentley had written to the Secretary of State to ask who would be consulted and to highlight that the funding should be matched by the UK Government when the UK exited the EU. Regarding future influence on the Committee of the Regions, the UK had paid contributions to the Committee until 2020, and they were open to the possibility of a Joint Committee to consider particular areas of legislation following the exit of the UK from the EU.


Members noted that Cllr Bentley had also written to the Secretary of State seeking urgent clarity on issues around candidacy for election and voting rights in the Local Elections in May 2019. Clarity was also urgently needed on food hygiene and food labelling issues as councils would have to work quickly if officers were required to be retrained. Cllr Bentley was advising local authorities to keep a risk register on any issues arising as a result of the lack of clarity on Brexit related matters.


Members noted the comments from the Leadership Board in response to Cllr Bentley’s update on Brexit the previous day.


 In the discussion which followed Members made the following points:


·         Concerns were raised that the unaccompanied asylum seeking children had started to arrive in a greater number to the West of the country.

·         Following a query, Cllr Bentley confirmed they would continue to bring to the Government’s attention the issues around the number of unaccompanied asylum seeking children coming into Councils’ care.

·         Statutory instruments are also being drafted by the Welsh government to be put in place by March 2019 to provide full assurance to the sector.




The LGA Executive noted the update, the areas where further LGA action is needed and the focus of future Brexit work.




The Brexit Task Force and officers to take forward in line with members steer.



Business Rates Retention and Fair Funding pdf icon PDF 149 KB


Richard Watts, Chairman of the Resources Board, introduced the report which updated Members on progress on the Fair Funding Review and Business Rates Retention Reform since the previous meeting in September.


Regarding the Fair Funding Review, Members noted that the officer level technical working group had continued to meet, and there was agreement about the use of population projections in future formulae. This position had been agreed by the Leadership Board and the LGA Executive earlier in the year.


Regarding Business Rates Retention, the Chairman and Group Leaders had signed off the BRR model earlier in the day. This would now be amended, quality checked, and shared with Member authorities.


In the discussion which followed a Member confirmed that the Welsh LGA support the English LGA in their position.




The LGA Executive noted the update. 




Officers to proceed with delivery of the LGA work programme on Business Rates Retention and the Fair Funding Review as directed by the LGA Leadership Board, Executive and the Business Rates Retention and Fair Funding Review Task and Finish Group.



The lives we want to lead, the LGA green paper for adult social care and wellbeing: update pdf icon PDF 114 KB


Sally Burlington, Head of Policy, gave an update on the LGA’s adult social care and wellbeing green paper, The Lives We Want to Lead. Sally emphasised that there had been a tremendous response to the consultation and the LGA’s research team were currently conducting the analysis.


In terms of next steps Sally explained that it would be key to ascertain from the Autumn budget how the NHS budget will be realised. The NHS Long Term Plan would also be of great importance to local government.


Cllr Izzi Seccombe OBE, Deputy Chairman of the LGA, congratulated officers for their hard work in this area. The importance of discussing the financial options for the future of adult social care and in maintaining political unity on this matter in the LGA was also raised.




The LGA Executive noted the update and the progress that had been made with the LGA green paper.



Note of the last Leadership Board meeting - Tabled




The LGA Executive noted the minutes of the LGA Leadership Board meeting held on 17 October 2018.



Note of last LGA Executive meeting pdf icon PDF 175 KB




The LGA Executive agreed the minutes of the previous meeting held on 13 September 2018.