Despite the concerns voiced about the new comprehensive
performance assessment during the Local Government
Association’s four-day annual conference, a survey of
delegates shows that more than half think the process will be
beneficial to their local authorities.
The postal survey of 152 delegates carried out by the LGA and
the insurance company Zurich Municipal reveals that one in four
local authorities expect to gain financial freedoms as a result of
the process, while one in eight anticipate it leading to greater
However, for local government as a whole, more than half of the
delegates believe the local government white paper will ultimately
bring more government or external intervention in local authorities
than financial freedoms and flexibility to innovate.
This feeling was reflected by numerous speakers in Bournemouth
and was also echoed in the LGA’s summer review, which argues:
“Progress with the comprehensive performance assessment of councils
is more evident than the delivery of ambitious freedoms and
flexibilities to them.”
It adds: “CPA should not focus on the allocation of councils to
one of four categories, but should help all councils to
The survey also shows that more than 80 per cent of local
authorities believe that there will be a move away from traditional
local authority structures over the next five years, with more
local services being provided by multi-agency partnerships.
In particular, almost three-quarters of delegates believe their
local authorities are likely to create new partnerships with local
health providers to enable the delivery of social care, with a
third going as far as considering formally handing control of
social care provision over to such a partnership.