Archives for July 3rd, 2006

NEW CPA RATINGS FOR THREE COUNCILS

Headlines, PublicNet: 3 July, 2006

Three local authorities have had their Comprehensive Performance Assessment ratings upgraded in the latest quarterly update from the Audit Commission. The status of six other councils remains unchanged.The Commission has reviewed CPA categories for a number of single tier and county councils, taking into account the results of new-style corporate assessments and Joint Area Reviews of children’s services that have been published by the Office for Standards in Education since the first update at the end of March. The next update is expected to take place at the end of September or early October.

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‘STEP CHANGE IMPROVEMENT’ IN PERFORMANCE BY PLANNING AUTHORITIES

Headlines, PublicNet: 3 July, 2006

The Government has welcomed what it calls ‘a step-change improvement’ in performance by local planning authorities. Latest figures show seven out ten authorities met or surpassed the target of handling 60 per cent of major planning applications within 13 weeks in the last financial year – up from 55 per cent six months ago. Quarterly statistics also show that 81 per cent of all planning decisions were made within 8 weeks between January and March this year, three per cent higher than in the same period a year ago.The figures show that 127 authorities improved their performance in the six months from September last year but the Department for Communities is congratulating three in particular, Kirklees Southwark and Waveney. They were previously designated as poorly performing but the DCLG is now formally disengaging with the councils. The statistics show that the performance of 12 councils is declining.In an effort to keep up the improvement the department has published a report setting out ways in which local authorities can improve their performance and 7.5 million pounds is being made available this year for the Planning Advisory Service and the Advisory Team on Large Applications to assist local councils. The money is part of the 485 million pound Planning Delivery Grant invested since 2003 to reward authorities that meet their timeliness targets and improve the quality of plan-making and online planning services.

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