The collapse of Kids Company: ‘extraordinary catalogue of failures’
The Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee find that while ultimate responsibility lies with the charity’s ‘negligent’ trustees, Government and regulators such as the Charity Commission must also learn lessons from this failure.  The report re-iterates the core message of PACAC’s recent report into fundraising in the charitable sector,  that ultimate responsibility for every aspect of governance – including the financial and reputational stability of an organisation rests with Trustees.
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Essex Online Partnership: Video Case Study
Over £1.76M Savings to Date

Secure Employee Authentication & Citizen Access to Public Services  

Essex Online Partnership (EOLP) is an amalgamation local district, borough and unitary councils, Essex County Council, Essex Police and Essex County Fire Services, all collaborating securely on ICT projects across Essex. EOLP was formed to work together to support the development of integrated and accessible local services to Essex citizens and businesses in ways that are convenient to them and to make each organisations become more efficient. Since the partnerships inception over £1.76M h as been saved across the enterprise .

This short video case study presented by Ray Ware, IT Manager, Maldon District Council and EOLP Project Lead details how EOLP overcame the major challenge of bringing together 14 individual, potentially non-resilient, expensive authentication solutions into a central resilient authentication solution that could be used by all authorities whilst providing built-in scalability to roll out to citizens.

Click here to access the full EOLP video case study.

Will this ‘power-up’ the northern economy?
The first-ever mayor of Greater Manchester will be elected on Thursday 4 May 2017, Northern Powerhouse Minister James Wharton has announced.  The Greater Manchester devolution deal was the first to be agreed with the government, and paves the way for significant powers to be passed to the area from Westminster – a key part of building the Northern Powerhouse.
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‘Saving the Universe’ takes time and is very complicated
The Public Accounts Committee highlights concerns over the roll-out of Universal Credit concluding the programme still has ‘a long way to go’.  The Committee says it remains "disappointed by the persistent lack of clarity and evasive responses by the Department to our inquiries, particularly about the extent and impact of delays". The estimated completion date for the roll-out of the Universal Credit digital service is six months later compared to when the PAC examined the programme last year.
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Is it just Oxbridge?
The PM has announced plans to require universities to publish statistical data on admissions by gender, class and ethnic background (In 2014 just 27 black students entered Oxford out of 2,500 intake).  Under the proposal, all universities will have a new ‘transparency duty’, part of a drive to highlight those institutions failing to improve access.
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SME Supplier Locator update...

UK Government and public sector spend with SME’s is continually on the increase and by 2020, it is the stated intent of Cabinet Office that £1 of every £3 spent on government contracts goes to SME’s. The past 5 years have seen government make a priority of getting money through its supply chain into the hands of SMEs, by both setting targets and introducing new procurement mechanisms.

Against this backdrop, the WiredGov Supplier Locator service has been developed specifically to embrace the SME Agenda and provide the ideal platform for SME’s to promote their services, solutions, accreditation and success stories directly to our ever increasing audience across all government and public sector verticals and Tier 1 suppliers.

Click here to find out more and view this week’s new arrivals to the SME Supplier Locator service. 

‘Dry’ but critically important subject
The Investigatory Powers Bill risks undermining the UK’s strongly performing Tech sector because of uncertainty about the costs of complying with the new legislation, the Science and Technology Committee has warned.  UK businesses must not be placed at a relative commercial disadvantage to overseas competitors by the proposed measures, according to the MPs, and the costs of implementing the additional data storing measures in the draft Bill should be fully met by Government.
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HMRC ‘clean bowled’ by a ‘Googly’
The UK's tax deal with Google has created headlines and led to accusations of large multinational companies getting away with paying little or no tax, while small UK-based businesses and ordinary taxpayers are being taxed at a much higher level.  A new paper from the ESRC-funded Institute for Fiscal Studies looks at how the current tax system seeks to tax corporate profits, and the problems that can arise.  The paper highlights several key challenges with the tax system.
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Who controls the capture & use of our data?

Following the recent Data Protection Day, it seems like the perfect opportunity to announce the publication of the ICO’s revised Privacy notices code of practice for consultation.  The ICO are very keen to get your feedback.  This code of practice has not been revised for several years and as we all know, this is a long time in the digital world.  The way personal data is used rapidly changes and the ICO has undertaken this review with that in mind.

Ensuring that individuals have a clear understanding of what is done with their personal data is a fundamental point of the Data Protection Act (DPA) 1998. This code of practice has been written to show organisations how they can achieve this in a clear and engaging way.

ICO:  Revised code looks at privacy notices – (closes on 24 March 2016)

Explore this offer
Outdoors enthusiasts can build impressive collections of Ordnance Survey maps, but it often means they’re not using the most up-to-date maps to get outside & explore Britain.  Up until 20 March 2016, OS is offering avid explorers the chance to return their old maps and receive money off new map purchases in return.

OS encourages people to use up-to-date maps with their trade-in scheme – (offers ends 20 March 2016)

They have lived through it!

Severe flooding is now an expected feature of life in many parts of the UK and is the country’s most serious ‘natural’ hazard with more than 5m properties at risk.  At least 16,000 homes have been flooded so far during the winter of 2015/6 (costing £5bn+.  Children & young people are known to be acutely affected during & after floods. Understanding children’s perspectives is a vital part of the process of building resilience.  A better understanding of how flooding & other disasters affect children & young people can inform more effective policy, enhance resilience and reduce the impact of future emergencies.

The research project ‘Children, young people and flooding: recovery & resilience’ worked with 2 groups of flood-affected children & young people. The children developed Flood Manifestos and a 6 minute film, outlining their policy recommendations for more effective local & national flood prevention, mitigation & adaptation.

ESRC:  Flooding & resilience - the role of children and young people

Are you & your team ‘practicing’ the NHS of the future?
NHS England is calling on the healthcare science community to put forward nominations for this year’s annual Healthcare Science Awards.  Details of the categories, entry forms and guidance on nomination is available on the NHS Networks website. Completed nomination forms should be returned to england.cso@nhs.net no later than 17 February 2016.

NHS England call for 2016 Healthcare Science Award nominations

It must be the season for awards
The Social Investment Awards celebrate the businesses & people who are helping to solve problems in society.  The awards aim to highlight the impact that social investment is having on communities & celebrate the UK’s world-leading social investors & enterprises.  This is the 2nd year the awards have been held.  The awards are free to enter and applications are open until 18 March 2016.

Cabinet Office:  Nominations open for Social Investment Awards


 More contributions to the EU Referendum

More news, opinions, documents, claims & counter-claims;

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IPPR:  Many unanswered questions on emergency brake

PX:  Boston is the least integrated place in the country

Telegraph:  Migrant crisis to cost Germany €50bn by 2017

TUC: PM's renegotiation agenda misses the point

IPPR:  EU Renegotiation - More Hurdles for Cameron to Overcome

IEA: EU policies threaten to cost Britain £9,265 per household

10DS:  Prime Minister's statement on EU renegotiation: 3 February 2016

Reactions to Tusk's “UK in EU” proposal dominate pre-summit debate

NIESR: FOI response shows PM’s focus on migrants’ benefits misguided

CBI: UK will stand stronger with China from inside the EU


 More contributions to the UK constitutional debate

More news, opinions, documents, claims & counter-claims;

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IFG:  How to make the 'devolution revolution' work

Wales Office:  Let's concentrate on delivery not powers, says Wales Office Minister

LGA responds to CLG committee devolution report

ScotGov:  Swinney – Billions in potential cuts are no 'molehill'


Please note that previously published newsletters can be accessed from the

Newsletter Archive

Please choose from the links below to view individual sections of interest:

"Occasionally I drive over that bridge [where we recovered his body]. Sometimes I don’t even realise I have done it, and my day continues as normal. Other days I spot the sign for the small village as I approach, and I see that father and son once again."
The nation was invited to talk about mental health. Rob Norman, a fire officer with West Midlands fire service, writes about his flashbacks and intrusive memories – the brain's way of processing trauma – and calls for more emergency services staff to talk about mental health.

Also on the network
Manchester's grand ambition to turn a £7bn deficit into a surplus

Manchester's grand ambition to turn a £7bn deficit into a surplus
Jane Dudman interviews Trafford council’s chief executive Theresa Grant about making devolution work

Fixing the UK's mental health crisis will need both police and health

Fixing the UK's mental health crisis will need both police and health
Mary O'Hara: It’s time to fill the gaps in our over-stretched police and mental health services

I had to escape the town hall to see the people behind the statistics

I had to escape the town hall to see the people behind the statistics
Inara Khan: Those of us working on policy in local government are in danger of losing touch with the public

News in brief
• Ministers must explain why they 'overrode civil service' on Kids Company
• Department for Business, Innovation and Skills to close its Sheffield office
• No women among the soon-to-be elected mayors in English devolution deals
• Civil service fast stream to open assessment centres outside London
• Spending cuts put 25,000 council jobs at risk, GMB union warns
• Surrey crime commissioner under fire for criticising new NCA chief
Credit unions: turning goodwill into action. Register now for panel debate

Credit unions: turning goodwill into action. Register now for panel debate
We're looking for policymakers to join us to discuss wider access to low-cost borrowing