Local democracy

  • Co-designing the West Midlands’ future democracy with young people

    14 August 2019

    Cllr Brigid Jones says this week - which includes International Youth Day - is a fitting time to reflect on why the West Midlands Combined Authority has launched the Young Combined Authority.


  • Setting standards for democracy

    30 July 2019

    Proposals to suspend councillors for their misdemeanours may cause more problems than they solve, argues Colin Copus. Instead, the public should have the right of recall


  • Leave those kids alone

    30 July 2019

    Claire Fox says councils continue to thwart kids’ play activities in the interests of bureaucracy


  • 'Nearly everyone' showed correct ID in voter trials

    22 July 2019

    An independent evaluation of voter ID trials in May has found they were a success and ‘nearly everyone’ showed the correct identification. 


  • Local government must surely be up for a shift to insourcing

    22 July 2019

    Labour has published a plan for ‘21st century insourcing’. John Tizard says the party is 'not simply arguing for a return to the early 1970s' - 'rather they want to reset the dial’ so that public services are more democratic and accountable.


  • MPs to examine devolution progress

    12 July 2019

    Progress on devolution in England will be scrutinised by a new Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee inquiry.


  • Voter ID confidence drops

    12 June 2019

    The proportion of people who think voter ID helps to prevent electoral fraud has dropped from 52% in 2016 to 35% in 2019, new research has found.


  • Call for Liverpool intervention after mayoral review frustration

    12 June 2019

    Liverpool City Council’s Lib Dem leader has called for the Government to intervene after he claimed the authority blocked his attempts to review the elected mayor position.


  • Council hits back after MP calls for abolition

    07 June 2019

    Telford & Wrekin Council has said calls from an MP for its abolition are an ‘insult to democracy and residents’.


  • The basic laws of political physics

    05 June 2019

    Dr Jonathan Carr-West says pressure provides a burning platform and the political vacuum an opportunity for action. But if the atmosphere remains toxic, we won’t be able to move forward at all


  • ‘Enough is enough’

    04 June 2019

    Chief executive of the Association of Electoral Administrators (AEA) Peter Stanyon says a root and branch review of election delivery must happen, with the concerns of those on the frontline heard and understood


  • Counting the costs of the 'break-neck speed' EU elections

    04 June 2019

    Returning officer Ian Miller writes in a personal capacity about the lessons Government and the House of Commons must learn after two major elections within three weeks - and he backs the recent Localis call for five-year terms for councillors.


  • Impartiality has never been more important

    28 May 2019

    Louise Round says that for many in districts over the coming years, the lines - red or otherwise - may not be drawn on a party-political basis.


  • Sufficient polling stations are essential to democracy

    22 May 2019

    Allen Graham says he is continually impressed by how Rushcliffe BC's election staff respond to immense logistical and administrative pressures.


  • Counting the costs of the EU Exit process

    15 May 2019

    When the dust settles on the UK's departure from the European Union there will surely be a formal public inquiry into how the government has handled the process, says Ian Miller


  • What should ex-councillors do next?

    08 May 2019

    John Tizard says those staring into the future after losing their council seats should take time to ‘recover and reflect’, and there will always be ways they can use their ‘experience, knowledge, networks and political antennae’


  • Unfreezing social mobility

    08 May 2019

    Social mobility has been stagnating for years, says a new report. How can councils help drive social mobility upwards and reduce levels of income inequality – and what’s holding them back? Ann McGauran reports


  • Time for a governance refresh

    08 May 2019

    May is a prime time to review governance - and this can be done by understanding and addressing the needs of democratic accountability, says Ed Hammond.


  • Be a cautious revolutionary

    08 May 2019

    Challenging existing policies and paradigms is something we should always want, argues Dan Corry. But he warns that being too enthusiastic to do away with what came before can have unintended consequences.


  • Rise of independents suggests localism is on the move

    08 May 2019

    Brexit, which has split the two main parties down the middle nationally, has clearly also extended its reach down to local level. If this breaks the national stranglehold over local elections this is a promising outcome, says Michael Burton.