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localism act - what do you think?
Earlier this year we asked our members to share their views on the Localism Act with us. A number of members got in touch explaining what they thought the Act represented for small charities and thanks to them we were able to compile an article for Govtoday on this very topic. To read the article please click here.
Chances are that if this Act has a direct impact on you, you’ll already know all about it, but if the detail of it has lost you a little, here is a short summary we’ve written of the most important bits.
On 15th November this year, the Localism Bill became an Act of Parliament. As a central pillar of the Coalition Government’s decentralisation agenda, the Act aims to devolve greater powers to local councils and community organisations. It does so in four primary ways.
1. New Powers for Local Authorities
The Act aims to transfer public functions to local authorities in order to improve local accountability or promote economic growth.
2. Rights to individuals and communities
Community Right to Challenge - Gives local groups the opportunity to take over local authority services.
Community Right to Buy - Allows local people to nominate key community assets to a list, held with local authorities. Should any asset listed become threatened, groups/individuals will have chance to safeguard them by bidding for and buying them.
3. Reforms to Planning Decisions
New rights in the Localism Act will mean local people can decide where new homes and businesses should go and what they should look like.
4. Reforms to Make Housing Decisions Local
Allows local authorities to set rules for who can apply for social housing, have autonomy over funding and create more flexible arrangements for social housing tenants.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Act, here is a link to what we have found to be useful introductory guide: