• What can we take away from Croydon’s s114 notice?

    19 November 2020

    It’s immediately clear from Croydon LBC’s section 114 action that local government must recognise and respect their collective responsibility for maintaining a council’s financial health, says Rob Whiteman.

  • Peterborough reserves near exhaustion

    28 October 2020

    The council has taken a financial hit of £38.9m due to the coronavirus crisis.

  • Remove the ring fences

    13 October 2020

    Councils are prevented from focusing on key priorities due to ringfences or restrictions on things such as the housing revenue account, says Tony Kirkham. If these were eased temporarily, councils could act in a more agile way, he adds.

  • Future Forum: Business rates retention is doomed

    24 September 2020

    Moves to fund local government using the proceeds from business rates are ‘doomed,’ according to a financial expert.

  • IFS finds £2bn budget black hole

    18 August 2020

    Councils face a budget black hole of £2bn this year due to unfunded coronavirus costs, a new study has found.

  • Council may have to issue s114, warns CIPFA

    29 June 2020

    Windsor & Maidenhead RBC may not be able to set a legal budget in future years and may have to issue a Section 114 notice, finance experts have warned.

  • Time to relax borrowing rules

    23 June 2020

    An Institute for Fiscal Studies report on coronavirus regional variations paints a stark picture for councils’ budgets, says Michael Burton.

  • No council should go bust due to efforts to combat coronavirus

    22 June 2020

    It would be a public disaster if councils went bust due to their heroic efforts in combating COVID-19, says Cllr Carl Les – and he is confident a rescue package is on the horizon.

  • IFS urges government to relax the rules on finance amid crisis

    22 June 2020

    Finance experts have called on the Government to temporarily relax rules that prevent councils borrowing to cover day-to-day spending as they deal with the coronavirus crisis.

  • Combined authority 'spending reserves like it's going out of fashion'

    17 June 2020

    Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s chief executive has expressed doubts about whether his region would be able to cope with a second wave of coronavirus infections.

  • Ready, steady, CFO!

    17 June 2020

    Tim Willis outlines the new challenges COVID-19 has inflicted on his council, including estimated losses of ‘nearly a third of our £17m net revenue expenditure’. Government needs to fund the shortfall, he says.

  • Councils lack reserves to deal with coronavirus crisis

    09 June 2020

    More than 100 councils in England have no reserves to draw upon to cover the financial impact of COVID-19.

  • COVID-19: Councils need more money to survive in the longer term

    07 April 2020

    Andrew Burns says the Government must offer councils ‘significant additional, direct and speedy’ financial support to ensure their resilience and survival in the longer term.

  • Councils are faring well on finance

    09 January 2020

    Last month, CIPFA published its resilience index tool – and the picture for local government is better than expected. Heather Jameson looks at the data.

  • DATA EXCLUSIVE: Resilience index shows just 10% of councils are at financial risk

    15 December 2019

    The ‘majority of councils’ are not showing signs of major financial stress, the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy has claimed.

  • CIPFA index 'must be forward-looking'

    19 August 2019

    The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) must double down on efforts to include indicators that are forward-looking in its financial resilience index, a senior sector figure has suggested.

  • Auditor raises reserves concerns at Redcar & Cleveland

    01 August 2019

    The council has been warned it faces running out of reserves within two years.

  • Are reserves such a bad thing?

    09 July 2019

    The public naming of 11 councils deemed at risk of running out of cash reserves has thrown the spotlight on how this money should be spent. Gary Fielding says careful use of reserves can be the solution to a range of issues.

  • Mind the gap

    13 February 2019

    The MJ/LGiU survey exposes the growing gap between the public’s expectations and councils’ ability to deliver – with nearly two-thirds of respondents (61%) providing only ‘a little bit more’ than their statutory obligations.

  • Sheffield warns 'austerity not over yet'

    04 February 2019

    Sheffield City Council will dip into its reserves as it faces a budget overspend totalling £21m over two years.