Pickles confirms scrapping of Local Area Agreements….baby and bathwater?

Seems a bit odd to me that in an ‘age of austerity’ when surely co-operation and collaboration are a necessity, government is getting rid of Local Area Agreements (LAAs) which (I thought) were intended to do just that…

In a letter sent to council leaders and chief executives yesterday, Eric Pickles claimed that abolishing LAAs would remove more than 4,700 targets from local authorities, “relieving you of the bureaucracy that that diverts money away from the front line.”

The notice under section 109 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 revokes all designations of local improvement targets in Local Area Agreement with effect from 13th October.

He wrote: “What this means is that I am handing over full control of all current Local Agreements to you – if you wish to amend or drop any targets you are now free to do so, without needing my approval. Where you choose to keep any of your targets, we will no longer monitor your performance.”

“And instead of the National Indicator Set, and instead of every single department’s endless demands that you measure this, that or the other, there’s just going to be one list of every bit of data that Government needs.”

Still, out with the old and in with the new, I suppose.

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