London Councils has made a detailed representation to government highlighting the distinctive pressures on local government services that should be addressed in the Budget, and making the case for longer term reform. Our representation urges government to take immediate steps in the Budget to stabilise local government funding in 2019-20 by providing additional resources to the service areas experiencing the greatest pressure, and by removing restrictions that prevent local councils from raising or spending their own resources.
Key messages in our representation
- The combination of growing demand, growing costs, and continued funding cuts is placing unsustainable pressure on local government finances in London.
- This has created acute and growing pressure on three important demand-led services: children’s services; adult social care and housing.
- The Government must use the Budget to stabilise funding for these services in 2019-20, devolve greater functional and fiscal responsibilities to local government, and take the opportunity in next year’s Spending Review to fundamentally reform local government finance to put it on a sustainable path over the longer term.