Legal intelligence for professionals in local government.

This update contains brief details of recent Government publications, legislation, cases and other developments relevant to those involved in local government work, which have been published in the previous two weeks. Items are set out by subject, with a link to where the full document can be found on the internet.

If you have been forwarded this update by a colleague and would like to receive it direct please email Claire Booth.

All links are correct at the date of publication. The following topics are covered in this update:

   Adult Social Services    Highways
   Audit    Libraries
   Children's Services    Localism
   Community Rights    Maladministration 
   Delivery of Services    Police
   Development Control    Procurement
   Economic Development    Public Health
   Education    Rating
   Finance    Registration Services
   Governance    Regulatory Services

Adult Social Services

County Councils Network: County MPs briefing – Care Bill Committee stage: information for County MPs ahead of the Committee Stage of the Care Bill in the House of Commons, including recommended amendments. (9 January 2014)

DH: Care Bill factsheet 19 – Better Care Fund: this factsheet describes how the Care Bill will facilitate a Better Care Fund to promote closer working between the NHS and Care and Support. (10 January 2014) 

King's Fund: Making best use of the Better Care Fund – Spending to save?: this evidence summary briefing offers a guide to aid the discussions between clinical commissioning groups, local authorities and health and wellbeing boards. It presents evidence from the King’s Fund and others in a number of different areas, e.g. primary prevention, self-care, case management, and emphasises that this evidence must be interpreted and used with a sound understanding of the key local challenges and the underlying issues that need to be addressed. (15 January 2014)

County Councils Network: Care Bill Committee briefing – Deferred payments: information for members of the Commons Public Bill Committee on the Care Bill, focusing on deferred payments and the tabled amendments for clauses 34 & 35 of the Care Bill. (15 January 2014)

DH: Social care funding – Industry and government statement of intent: the Care and Support Minister, Norman Lamb, and the Director General of the ABI, Otto Thoresen, have signed a joint Statement of Intent committing to work together to help people get the information they need to plan and make decisions about how to pay for their long term care, and create the right conditions for a larger market of financial products that will give people more choice. The commitment results from the planned reforms under the Care Bill that aim to provide greater certainty about what people will be expected to pay for their long term care and therefore provide greater opportunity for a new market of care products to emerge.
DH has also published the results of an Industry review of financial care products that identifies opportunities for development of financial products to help people pay for care. (22 January 2014)

DH: Topics for new NICE quality standards and guidance to improve the quality of social care – Summary of consultation responses and outcomes: in February 2013 the Government consulted on future topics for National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidance and standards in social care. NICE quality standards are a set of statements designed to improve and measure improvements within a particular area of care. This report lists the topics that arose from the consultation and the DH's decision for each. The first set of five topics will be formally referred to NICE in January 2014, who will then add them to their social care work plan. (22 January 2014)

DH: Introducing fundamental standards – Consultation on proposals to change CQC registration regulations: seeks views on proposed new basic requirements that all health and adult social care providers registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) should meet, and the standard of care and service that patients or care service users should expect. The fundamental standards will make it clear that there are some standards of safety and quality that should always be met. They will be used as part of the CQC’s inspections and regulation of care providers, and the CQC will be able to hold providers to account if they are not being met, including through the courts where appropriate.The consultation closes on 4 April 2014. (23 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Welsh Government: Phase 1 – Draft Report: Review of Audit, Inspection and Regulation: sets out the findings from Phase 1 of the review of audit, inspection and regulation, namely to establish the general consensus on the overarching purpose, principles and objectives of an audit, inspection and regulation system in Wales. The closing date for comments is 14 March 2014. (20 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Children's Services

DfE: Statutory guidance on children who run away or go missing from home or care: this guidance, issued under s.7 of the Local Authority Social Services Act 1970, sets out the steps that local authorities and their partners should take to prevent children from going missing and to protect them when they do go missing. The new guidance states that all runaway children, on their return, should receive an independent return interview organised by their local authority. Local authorities must comply with this guidance unless local circumstances indicate exceptional reasons that justify a variation. There is also a flowchart showing the roles and responsibilities when a child goes missing from care. (17 January 2014)

Ofsted: Private fostering – Better information, better understanding: this report looks at evidence from inspections of 12 local authority private fostering arrangements between 2011 and 2013. It suggests that the extent of private fostering, including of vulnerable children such as disabled young people, is still largely ‘unknown’ in many areas. It recommends a number of ways to improve the way information about private fostering is collected and managed. (24 January 2014)

Ofsted: Inspecting childminder agencies: seeks views on how childminder agencies should be inspected. The Children and Families Bill 2013 currently going through Parliament allows for the creation of childminder agencies to help childminders with training, support, advice and networks. The aim is to better support existing childminders, attract new high quality providers into the market, and provide more choice for parents. The consultation closes on 21 March 2014. (23 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Clare Taylor.

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Community Rights

Matterhorn Capital Bristol Ltd v Bristol City Council and Bristol South Scouts [2014] UKFTT CRB/2013/0006 (Unreported, FTT GRC): this case concerned an appeal by developers, MCB, against the Council's decision to list a scout hut as an Asset of Community Value under Part 5 of the Localism Act 2011 and the Assets of Community Value (England) Regulations 2012. In the period after the scout hut  was listed but before the review, MCB demolished the building. MCB contended that the "future condition" under s.88(2) of the 2011 Act could not be satisfied as, taking into account that the scout hut had been demolished and the lease had expired, it was not realistic to think that there would be a time in the next five years when there could be a non-ancillary use of the land that would further (whether or not in the same way as before) the social wellbeing or social interests of the community.
The court held, dismissing the appeal, that Bristol South Scouts had shown a commitment to the site for 60 years and it was clear that they were determined to rebuild a scout hut, if possible, on the site. It was not necessary to press for detailed information about the money available or the possibilities of philanthropy in order to conclude that the outcome they sought was realistic. MCB's argument that any proposal to build a new scout hut on the site and to resume community use would require planning permission might well be right; but on the facts there was no suggestion that there would be any difficulty in securing such permission, any more than there had been difficulty in securing permission for housing for the rest of MCB's land  and so this factor had no material impact in the assessment of what could be a realistic outcome. (23 January 2014)
See also 11KBW's briefing.

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Delivery of Services

Welsh Government: Commission on Public Service Governance and Delivery – Full report: the Commission on Public Service Governance and Delivery, chaired by Sir Paul Williams, was set up by the First Minister to independently review all aspects of Wales’ public services to see how they are currently working and how they can be better improved in the future. This report examines all aspects of public service provision in Wales under five themes: complexity; scale and capability; governance, scrutiny and delivery; leadership, culture and values; and performance and performance management. It finds that the pressures faced by public services are unprecedented and are likely to continue for the foreseeable future. The response to improve their delivery in the face of these major challenges requires a step-change in behaviour, performance and approach. The challenge is to move to models of governance and delivery that: measure performance against ‘best in class’ not ‘best in Wales’; tackle the longer term challenges; engage and respond to citizens to prevent and manage demand; and provide the flexible and seamless services that meet the diverse needs in Wales today and for the future. The Commission's recommendations include a proposal to merge the existing 22 local authorities in Wales into between 10 and 12 larger councils. (20 January 2014)

Cabinet Office / DCLG: Delivering differently – Questions and answers: the Delivering Differently programme supports local authorities to transform their services through the use of new delivery models such as mutuals and voluntary organisations. It includes the Delivering Differently Challenge, which will provide 10 authorities with up to £100,000 of support to spearhead transformative projects, with bespoke professional support to enable them to undertake a strategic review of all available options, guidance from an expert panel and opportunities to network and share their experiences with other Challenge authorities. This guide contains answers to FAQs about the Delivering Differently Challenge. (22 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Development Control

DCLG: Written statement to Parliament – Green belt: the Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis has re-emphasised the Government's policy with regard to the importance of the protection of the green belt. He states that both temporary and permanent traveller sites are inappropriate development in the green belt and that planning decisions should protect green belt land from such inappropriate development. The policy position is that unmet need, whether for traveller sites or for conventional housing, is unlikely to outweigh harm to the green belt and other harm to constitute the “very special circumstances” justifying inappropriate development in the green belt. This is a material consideration for local planning authorities and planning inspectors in their planning decisions. He also announced that the Government intends to consult on further improvements to both planning policy and practice guidance to strengthen green belt protection that will focus on changes to the planning definition of ‘travellers’ to reflect whether it should only refer to those who actually travel and have a mobile or transitory lifestyle. (17 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Kathryn Lawrance.

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Economic Development

Deputy Prime Minister's Office: City Deal – Plymouth and the South West Peninsula: sets out the terms of the Plymouth and the South West Peninsula City Deal that will benefit the areas covered by Plymouth City Council, Cornwall Council, Devon CC, Somerset CC and Torbay Council. The agreement aims to reinvigorate the region’s marine and advanced manufacturing sectors, creating over 9,000 jobs. It will also tackle deep-rooted unemployment by providing intensive support to over 1,500 young people helping them back into employment, and support small businesses so that the region’s economy is open for business. In total, £34m of local and national public sector investment will be provided. (17 January 2014)

Key Cities Group: Manifesto for growth: the Key Cities Group comprises 22 English mid-sized cities that play a key role in their regional economy. The Group aims to provide their cities with more opportunities to boost the economic prosperity of the country. This manifesto sets out the Group's priorities and outlines how the Key Cities will work together and with others to address these areas. (21 January 2014)

DPM's Office: Lords Heseltine and Shipley appointed to negotiate Local Growth Deals: the Government has committed to negotiating deals with all 39 LEPs in England, devolving power and accountability to local areas to drive economic growth, and providing opportunities for local business and civic leaders to set out their priorities for growth in their areas. Part of this process is the competitive allocation of Local Growth Fund resources (£2bn in 2015/16 and at least £2bn a year over the life of the next Parliament). LEPs are also expected to bring in significant private sector jobs and investment. The DPM has now anounced that Lord Heseltine and Lord Shipley will advise ministers on individual proposals brought forward by the LEPs and will challenge the LEPs themselves to produce the best possible proposals. (21 January 2014)

DEFRA: National upland outcomes – A framework to help develop local partnership outcomes: this framework sets out how new and existing partnerships should work together to prioritise the outcomes from upland areas, including environmental, social and economic benefits. It adopts the ecosystem approach, which puts people at the heart of the environment, recognising the value of local skills and knowledge in determining the priorities at the local scale. (21 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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DfE: The School Governance (Roles, Procedures and Allowances) (England) Regulations 2013 – Departmental advice for school leaders and governing bodies of maintained schools and management committees of PRUs in England: departmental advice for school leaders, governing bodies and management committees of pupil referral units on their obligations and duties under SI 2013/1624 as amended by SI 2013/2688. The advice replaces the statutory guidance on the School Governance (Procedures) (England) Regulations 2003, and the non-statutory guidance Paying Allowances to School Governors 2003. (13 January 2014) 

DfE: Governors' handbook: DfE have published a new version of the guidance on the role and legal duties of governing bodies in maintained schools and academies (including free schools). It replaces the Governors’ Guide to the Law. (13 January 2014)

DfE: Constitution of governing bodies of maintained schools - proposed changes to regulations: seeks views on proposed changes to the regulations and guidance that govern the constitution of governing bodies in maintained schools and federations of maintained schools in England. The consultation closes on 14 March 2014. (13 January 2014)

DfE: Teacher misconduct – The prohibition of teachers:  professional conduct panels are held as a result of teacher disciplinary action and for the purpose of the regulation of teacher conduct. This revised advice aims to inform considerations leading to the decision to recommend the imposition of a prohibition order on a teacher following a finding of: unacceptable professional conduct; conduct that may bring the profession into disrepute; or conviction, at any time, of a relevant criminal offence. The changes make clear that any sexual misconduct - not just ‘serious sexual misconduct’ as set out previously - and any criminal conviction or caution involving indecent images of children should lead to prohibition. (17 January 2014).

Welsh Government: Revising the Learner Travel Operational Guidance and evaluating the Travel Code: seeks views on proposed amendments to the statutory guidance on all aspects of the Welsh Government's home to school/college transport policy. Concerns have been raised regarding the extent to which certain aspects of the Operational Guidance are clear, consistent and easy to understand for users, such as parents and local authorities. The guidance also needs to reflect wider policy reforms in other policy areas. The All-Wales Travel Behaviour Code (Travel Code) sets out the rights and responsibilities of learners when travelling, provides advice on how to ensure a safe journey, as far as is practicable, and sets out a legal framework for the removal of transport from learners who are in breach of the Code. Concerns have been raised regarding certain areas of the Travel Code which are not working effectively. The consultation looks at how these can be realistically addressed. It closes on 13 April 2014. (13 January 2014)

DfE: The academy / free school presumption – Departmental advice for local authorities and new school proposers: updated guidance to local authorities and new school proposers on the establishment of new schools. It sets out how the academy / free school presumption process under s.6A of the Education Act 2011 should operate in practice and the characteristics and qualities that new school proposers must demonstrate. This advice applies to all new schools established under the academy / free school presumption, including those that are proposed to be funded from the Targeted Basic Need Programme. (14 January 2014) 

DfE: Establishing new maintained schools – Departmental advice for local authorities and new school proposers: sets out for local authorities and other new school proposers the now limited circumstances in which the establishment of a new maintained school can be proposed since the Education Act 2011 amended  the arrangements for establishing new schools in the Education and Inspections Act 2006. (14 January 2014) 

DfE: Capital allocations: spreadsheet with details of the 2014/15 capital maintenance and devolved formula capital allocations to local authorities and schools in 2014 to 2015. This includes funding for the repair and refurbishment of academies through the Academies Capital Maintenance Fund, and for sixth-form colleges through the Building Condition Improvement Fund. DfE is providing £1.2bn capital maintenance funding and £200m devolved formula capital. There is also a capital technical note that provides detail on the methodology used to calculate the 2014/15 allocations. (24 January 2014)

DfE: Letter to local authorities on universal infant free school meals: the Schools Minister David Laws has written to all Directors of Children’s Services about universal free school meals for infants. The letter's annex lists the capital allocations for universal infant free school meals for each local authority in England in 2014/15. (24 January 2014)

R (Warren Comprehensive School's Governing Body and Barking & Dagenham LBC) v Secretary of State for Education (Unreported, Admin Ct): the Administrative Court has granted an application by a school and a London borough to quash the Secretary of State's (SoS's) decision to convert the school into an academy.
The school had been placed in special measures. The local authority then entered into a formal arrangement with another school in its area to form a federation of both schools, with the head of the other school having control over both. The SoS considered that, although these arrangements had led to an improvement, they would not achieve the same results as a sponsored academy, and he made an Order under the Academies Act 2010 taking the school out of local authority control. The school applied for judicial review of this decision, contending that the conversion was against the wishes of local residents and the SoS had failed to consider the federation as an alternative.
The court held, granting the application, that the question was whether it was arguable that it would be unlawful for an Academy Order to be made so that the governing body was immediately dismissed and an interim executive board put into place. The SoS was entitled as decision maker to the view that an academy was preferable to the alternative; however, that view was based on an assertion and was not supported by concrete evidence. The logical course was for consultation on the federation issue to be joined with the consultation on academy status so that there could be an opportunity to form a sensible view as to which option was preferred. It was wrong for a court to interfere with matters which were for the SoS; however, it was arguable that the SoS had not properly taken the relevant circumstances of the case into account. To require an immediate Academy Order was premature and a consultancy exercise should be allowed to go ahead before a decision was made. (15 January 2014)
The judgment is available from Lawtel (subscription required)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Clare Taylor.

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LGA: Rewiring public services – Council tax support: The story so far: this report draws on emerging evidence to look at some of the key consequences for councils of the end of council tax benefit and the introduction of local council tax support schemes. It draws some broad conclusions on: the policy's impact on local government funding and on council tax collection rates; potential changes in the second year of the scheme and subsequent years; and the interaction of the policy with other policies, including other aspects of welfare reform and on the overall incidence of the council tax. (8 January 2014)

LGA: Rewiring public services – Business rate retention: The story so far: this report reviews a council survey that the LGA conducted during November 2013 in order to gauge how local authorities are coping with the new system of business rates retention, what the most important issues are and how the Government could help deal with them. It finds that the primary challenge for local authorities is the level of financial risk that they face due to appeals and business rate avoidance, with little scope for those risks to be managed under the current arrangements. (8 January 2014)

Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (SI 2014/66 (W. 6)): these regulations, which come into force on 15 January 2014,  amend the Prescribed Requirements Regulations (SI 2013/3029 (W.301)) and the Default Scheme Regulations (SI 2013/3035 (W.303)). The changes amend the list of persons who do not need to show habitual residence, and increase certain the figures that are used in calculating whether a person is entitled to a reduction, and the amount of that reduction. (14 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Jon Coane.

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CfPS / LGA: Rethinking governance – Practical steps for councils considering changes to their governance arrangements: sets out how councillors and officers can achieve their governance objectives, with a ‘thinking toolkit’ – a five step process to help councils address the right issues and ask the right questions. The guide will help councils to decide whether informal governance changes, including tightening of existing processes, enabling more member involvement in policy-making and improving public consultation arrangements, or the more formal approach of legally changing to a different decision making model, is the best approach. It provides evidence from different governance arrangements in action, including five case studies that share the outcomes from recent governance reviews. (23 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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DfT: Gearing up for efficient highway delivery and funding: sets out ideas on how highways maintenance funding could be distributed from 2015 onwards in order to maximise benefits. This includes looking at the existing formula for block grant to each local highway authority and considers whether a top slice of the funding should be used for a competition bid fund for major maintenance schemes. The document has been produced to stimulate debate during the DfT's Highways Maintenance Efficiency Programme Roadshows that are taking place in January and February 2014. (21 January 2014) 

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Jonathan Turner.

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DCMS: Report under the Public Libraries and Museums Act 1964 for 2012/13: DCMS has published its annual report to Parliament on public library activities during 2012/13. It includes comments on local authorities' delivery of library services, community libraries and shared services. (16 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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HC CLG Select Committee: Secretary of State answers the public's #AskPickles questions: sets out the questions asked at the Committee's session with Eric Pickles, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. The questions covered such topics as: localism; local democracy; funding for local services; housing; and planning. The web page lists the questions asked and links to a video with his answers. (22 January 2014)

Smith Institute: Labour and localism – Persepectives on a new English deal: this report contains papers from senior national and local Labour politicians on a new agenda for local government that argue for a radical shift of powers from Whitehall to the town hall. It highlights local innovation, what Labour councils are calling for and the new agenda of the Shadow Department of Communities and Local Government team. (24 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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HC CLG Select Committee: Further review of the work of the Local Government Ombudsman: sets out the Committee's findings of its further review of the LGO. It commends the LGO for its concerted effort to improve its performance over the past 12 months. It finds that since late 2012, the LGO has sought to become more accountable, efficient and transparent. It has done so by, for example, publishing its decisions online, making considerable budget savings and creating a forum in which to hear the views of its service users. Although it has succeeded in several areas, further work needs to be done. The Government has said it will restructure the organisation if it can find the parliamentary time to do so; in the meantime the Committee makes four recommendations that it considers would not require any change in the law but which, if adopted, would enable the LGO to continue to improve its accountability, efficiency and transparency. (15 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Virginia Cooper.

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Home Office: Damian Green speech to the APCC: transcript of the Policing Minister's speech to the Association of Police and Crime Commisioners, in which he discusses new ways of collaborative working and driving new ideas to improve policing and increase efficiency. (21 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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New Procurement Directives: summary available following European Parliament vote:  the European Parliament has voted to adopt three new Directives that replace the existing Public Sector and Utilities Directives and introducing a new Directive covering the procurement of works concessions and service concessions. It is likely that the Directives will come into effect in March 2014, following formal signature and publication requirements. Member States will have 24 months to implement the Directives but it is likely that implementation will happen sooner in the UK. (15 January 2014)
Bevan Brittan has produced a summary of the Procurement Directives as adopted following the vote.

London Councils: Myth busting for boroughs – Asking suppliers to create skills and employment opportunities in their contracts: this "myth busting" guidance aims to raise awareness of the employment and skills opportunities through procurement by highlighting key success stories, and dispel some preconceived ideas on how to generate jobs and skills through procurement. It focuses on how many boroughs have used the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 to build on existing work to generate additional jobs and training opportunities for residents.
There is a complementary Myth busting for suppliers guide that aims to dispel a number of concerns that suppliers might have when boroughs ask them to generate additional jobs and training in their contracts. (13 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Elizabeth Cooper

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Public Health

Public Health England: Ring-fenced public health grant: PHE and the LGA have outlined the agreed arrangements for providing a year-end Preliminary Statement of Assurance to demonstrate that the ring-fenced public health grant has been spent on eligible expenditure. This letter to local authority chief executives sets out the process for returning Preliminary Statements of Assurance for the 2013/14 financial year. It includes a Statement of Assurance to be completed and returned to Public Health England by 6 May 2014. (15 January 2014)

Public Health England: Multi-disciplinary teams in public health: announces that PHE, the Faculty of Public Health, Association of Directors of Public Health and the LGA are working together to develop good practice guidance on the skill mix which councils may want to consider in a local public health team. (13 January 2014)

Association of Directors of Public Health: English transition 2013 '6 months on' survey – summary results: summarises the results of a survey on the opinions of Directors of Public Health six months on from the transition to local authorities. The report highlights the progress made, potential opportunities but also some areas where there is still work to be done. (10 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Welsh Government: Business rates increases in Wales to be capped at 2%: announces that the National Assembly for Wales has approved an Order allowing the Welsh Government to set the non-domestic rates multiplier at 0.473, which will see rates increases capped at 2% for the financial year 2014-15, matching that in England and Scotland. (14 January 2014)

Non-Domestic Rating (Small Business Rate Relief) (England) (Amendment) Order 2014 (SI 2014/43): this Order, which comes into force on 14 February 2014, amends SI 2012/148 to provide for a temporary extension to the increase in small business rates relief in England until 31 March 2015 and to extend the scope of the relief where small businesses expand. (20 January 2014)

Non-Domestic Rating (Rates Retention) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (SI 2014/96): these regulations, which come into force on 30 January 2014, amend the calculation of the surplus or deficit on the collection fund in Sch.4 to SI 2013/4352, which is to be carried out by authorities in respect of non-domestic rates. (20 January 2014)

Non-Domestic Rating (Designated Areas) Regulations 2014 (SI 2014/98): these regulations, which come into force on 17 February 2014, form part of the scheme for local retention of non-domestic rates. They designate areas within the local authorities which form the West of England City Deal, in relation to which a proportion of the non-domestic rating income is to be retained by the local authority all or part of whose area falls within the designated area. (24 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Jon Coane.

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Registration Services

Marriage of Same Sex Couples (Registration of Buildings and Appointment of Authorised Persons) Regulations 2014 (SI 2014/106): these regulations, which come into force on 13 March 2014, set out the procedures to be followed for the registration of places of religious worship for the solemnization of marriages of same sex couples. They also provide for the notification to the Registrar General of the appointment of Authorised Persons to attend and register such marriages, and for the cancellation of the registration of premises.  See also SI 2014/107, which makes consequential amendments to the Marriage (Authorised Persons) Regulations 1952 (SI 1952/1869), which make those regulations applicable to persons authorised for same sex marriage as well as marriage between a man and woman. (23 January 2014)

Draft Marriage of Same Sex Couples (Registration of Shared Buildings) Regulations 2014: these draft regulations, which are due to come into force on 13 March 2014, set out the procedure for the registration under s.43A of the Marriage Act 1949, as amended by the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, and cancellation of the registration of, buildings which are shared by more than one religious organisation for the solemnization of marriages of same sex couples. The Regulations are part of a series of instruments which are being laid before Parliament at the same time and which are necessary to implement the 2013 Act. (23 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Olwen Dutton.

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Regulatory Services

DCMS: The “Can Do” guide to organising and running voluntary and community events: information on how to organise voluntary and community events. It aims to dispel any confusion over issues such as health and safety and food hygiene, which people often think will get in the way of holding such an event. (18 January 2014)

DCLG: Your guide to organising a street party: updated  practical advice for anyone looking to hold a street party. It addresses some of the popular myths surrounding street parties and sets the record straight on what is actually needed (including on road closures, charges, playing music and insurance) as well as providing links to organisations who offer advice and support to people planning their own street parties. Local authorities are being encouraged to support local residents in bringing down any barriers that stop local areas from holding small private street parties. (18 January 2014)

If you wish to discuss any of the items noted in this section please contact Adam Kendall.

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