‘Councillors at the casino’? Why local councils are going bust and what we can do about it.
The crisis in local council finances is coming to a head as a growing number of local leaders are warning of funding gaps across England. More than a decade on from the UK government’s introduction of austerity and ambition for local government financial self-sufficiency, local councils continue to struggle with balancing their budgets. As local councils were forced to find savings and new income sources to close funding gaps, accusations emerged of ‘councillors at the casino’ taking risks with local taxpayers’ money by engaging in new and untried financial strategies and jeopardising essential local public service provision.
Professor Andy Pike’s new book – Financialization and Local Statecraft – sheds light on the causes and implications of this crisis by looking beyond the high-profile councils hitting the headlines to the wider local government landscape in England since 2010.
Taking the book as an entry point, this event brings together experts with the aim of better understanding the causes and ways out of the current financial situation, addressing the question of what local government is for and how can it be funded?
This event is co-hosted by Insights North East. To learn more visit insightsnortheast.co.uk.
Andy Pike (CURDS, Newcastle University)
Nico Heslop (Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities)
Emily Morrison (Institute for Community Studies)
Mark Sandford (House of Commons Library)
Jo Pitt (CIPFA)
Tony Travers (LSE)
Abdool Kara (National Audit Office)
Chair: John Tomaney (UCL)