£4m DCLG grant for Birmingham reforms

1 Sep 15

Birmingham City Council is to receive a £4.37m grant from the Department for Communities and Local Government to quicken implementation of its reform programme.

The council announced today that DCLG would back its reform plans, which were developed following Sir Bob Kerslake’s review of the authority’s performance, with additional resources.

Following Kerslake’s review, the authority set out a Future Council programme, with changes including moves to create a combined authority for the city region and initiatives to tackle the skills and employment issues in the east of the city. Work is also under way with the Boundary Commission for England to review the electoral cycle and ward boundaries as part of moves to change elections to all-out contests every four years.

Council leader Sir Albert Bore said the money from DCLG would support the change programme by funding additional staff to ensure regular council business continued while reforms, which are being overseen by an independent improvement panel, take place.

A bid outlining the need for financial support was submitted to DCLG in June and a grant has been agreed to complement funds already identified by both the council and the Local Government Association.

“I am committed to delivering the improvements expected of us and I am pleased that the government has agreed to provide funds that will give even more impetus to the achievement of ambitions in our Future Council,” Bore said.

“Whilst we are making progress, these extra funds will undoubtedly help us to accelerate the delivery of the changes in organisational governance and capability that are required. It is encouraging that the DCLG has acknowledged this is something we were not able to do wholly within the council’s own limited resources and that it has endorsed our plans to modernise and create a council that is both fit and sustainable for the future.”

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