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Local Government: Partnership, Place and Performance National

Local councils and their partners deliver essential local services and respond to the social, economic and environmental challenges in their areas. They are lead by elected councillors who provide leadership in setting local priorities and delivering important national policy objectives.

The Government Office Network (GON) works with local authorities and their partners across England.  Locality Managers are central to this relationship and are keen to understand the nature of local challenges and work in partnership so they can help to deliver coherent and effective responses.

Councils are keen to improve their performance.  One of the ways they do this is through “sector led” improvement when a Government funded Regional Improvement and Efficiency Partnership (RIEP) provides support and resources.  The GO (Government Office) offers advice to the RIEP Board as well as supporting, encouraging and challenging individual local authorities.

GOs are also negotiating the terms of three year Local Area Agreements (LAAs) and Multi-Area Agreements (MAAs) with council areas in each region.  Under the agreements, which commenced in 2008, local authorities and their partners are committed to securing improvements in the quality of life of their citizens.  The GO will continue to monitor the performance of local areas in achieving the agreed targets and arranging for the payment of reward grant where this is earned.

The GON worked with Audit Commission (AC) colleagues and other inspectorates to provide up-to-date information on performance for the Comprehensive Area Assessments (CAAs).  These assessments were compiled by the AC and published for the first time in December 2009.  They offer an annual review of the effectiveness of local partnerships and the capacities of councils to deliver.

Having a network of GOs across England supports the sharing of good practice by councils, as well as the lessons learned, both regionally and nationally. 

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