Public Matters - May 2022

Updates include Section 106, Changes to the statutory framework for local government in Wales and more.

31 May 2022

Welcome to our Public Matters Newsletter.

This month we have:

Public Procurement: Plus ça change, plus c’est la même choses

When you look at the changes set out in the new Procurement Bill, there are lots of things and concepts which do, notwithstanding the changes, remain the same. However, when you start looking under the surface, there are a number of significant changes and things for us all to consider.

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Is this the end of Section 106?

The Levelling-up and Regeneration Bill was introduced to Parliament on 11 May 2022. In this Bill, and in accordance with earlier reports, the government intends to replace Section 106 agreements and the existing Community Infrastructure Levy with a new Infrastructure Levy, which is aimed to help councils to deliver more affordable housing.

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Changes to the statutory framework for local government in Wales

The Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021 establishes a new and reformed legislative framework for Welsh local government elections, democracy, governance and performance. Many of the most significant changes contained in the Act came into force earlier this month.

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Subsidy Control Act 2022 – Royal Assent received

After months of debate, agreement has been reached by both Houses on the Subsidy Control Act 2022 and it has now received Royal Assent. The Act sets out the UK’s new subsidy control regime, which replaces the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement - which had been in place since the UK’s exit from the EU.

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Integrated Care Systems: practical steps for 1 July 2022

The concept of an Integrated Care System (ICS) is not a new one. ICSs have been introduced with the intention of uniting the operations of hospitals, community-based services, and health and social care bodies across their respective places. The goal is to move towards a relationship-driven and collaborative system and away from independent, competing silos of service.

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Balancing homelessness duties and housing stock: all change?

On 4 May 2022, the Court of Appeal handed down judgment in the joint case of R (Elkundi and others) versus Birmingham City Council and R (Imam) versus London Borough of Croydon. Both cases sought to address the difficulties that local housing authorities face when reconciling immediate duties for those in need with budgetary, supply and other constraints.

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Queen’s speech: planning reforms to be tackled via Levelling up Bill

This year’s Queen’s Speech has outlined several legislative changes and the overhauling of laws around levelling up, planning and economic crime that could affect conveyancers.

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The independent review of children's social care

The independent review of children’s social care has been published and addresses two major dilemmas in children’s social care:

  1. How to achieve the right outcomes for local people without unwarranted variation
  2. How to provide families and skilled practitioners autonomy to implement the right solution in each case, while also maintaining safeguarding.

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