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Local Authority round-up 03/02/23

Our Local Authority round up provides brief summaries of topical information on a weekly basis, to keep you aware of the changes and updates relevant to you.


North East devolution deal signed

A landmark £1.4 billion devolution deal for North East England was signed this week. Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove met with the Mayor of North Tyne and representatives from all seven local authorities covering the region to sign the deal at the Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead . A local consultation on the deal is now open and if approved councils will be given the power to directly elect a Mayor of the North East. Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove said “I am proud to sign this historic devolution deal for the North East today, which will give local leaders the flexibility and freedom they need to tackle the most pressing issues affecting the day-to-day lives of people in the area. Levelling up the North East remains an absolute priority for the government, and I look forward to working closely with local leaders to unlock fresh opportunities that create tangible benefits for people right across the region.”

For more information please click here.

Funding for councils to provide housing support for those recovering from addiction

The government has announced that it will be providing £53 million funding to 28 councils across England in order for them to provide additional housing support to people recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. The funding will be used to create new housing support schemes in local areas which are tailored to the needs of the community and will include specialist housing caseworkers supporting people in drug and alcohol treatment to access and maintain safe and suitable housing. Health and Social Care Secretary Steve Barclay said “We’re supporting those recovering from drug and alcohol addiction by addressing the link between improved treatment outcomes and a stable home. This £53 million funding, targeted to local authorities with the greatest need, will support the government’s ambition to reduce overall drug use to a historic 30-year low.”

For more information please click here.

International Trade

Further funding to grow British exports

Business Minister Kevin Hollinrake has announced that new grants are to be awarded to UK regulators and industry bodies to help them develop agreements with their international counterparts under the Recognition Arrangements Grant Programme – Round 2. The grants of up to £75,000 are being offered in order to make it easier for UK professionals, such as accountants and architects, to sell their services overseas by reducing the need for UK professionals to gain additional qualifications in foreign countries. Mr Hollinrake said “The UK’s professionals in sectors like accountancy, audit and legal services, are rightly recognised as some of the brightest and best in the world. This additional funding will further support UK qualified professionals to export their expertise overseas, winning contracts and scaling up their businesses.”

For more information please click here.

Planning and housing

Developers given 6 weeks to sign contracts to fix unsafe buildings

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has drawn up a contract which developers are being asked to sign under which they will commit to repair unsafe buildings. Developers are being given six weeks to sign the contracts and the government has warned that any developers who do not sign within this timeframe will face significant consequences. Under the contract, developers will commit an estimated £2 billion or more for repairs to buildings they developed or refurbished over the past 30 years. Legislation is expected to be in force by the Spring which will give the Secretary of State powers to prevent developers from operating freely in the housing market if they fail to sign and comply with the remediation contract.

For more information please click here.

Upcoming webinars

Webinar series: Data Protection

Register your interest for our on-going webinar series on ‘Data Protection’ for in-house lawyers, DPOs and senior management in private and public sector organisations. The series will run throughout 2023 providing attendees with up to date information on key Data Protection topics. The short one hour sessions will be delivered by our experts with allocated time for you to ask any questions you may have. The second in our series ‘Data Security’ will take place on Tuesday 14th March.

For more information or to book your place please click here.

If you have any questions about the issues raised in this update, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Please note that this briefing is designed to be informative, not advisory and represents our understanding of English law and practice as at the date indicated. We would always recommend that you should seek specific guidance on any particular legal issue.

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