Local Government Matters – October 2022
October has been another busy month for Trowers' local government team as we delivered a range of training seminars, caught up with colleagues at SOLACE and provided our views on the cost of living crisis, Black History Month and World Mental Health Day.
We all enjoyed hosting our annual Local Government Conference, held across two days, our first day covered issues relating to Place including regional development projects, housing and delivering net zero. The second day covered Service Delivery and including topics relating to commercialisation and the new procurement and subsidy control regimes. As ever we are grateful to the delegates that attended and the requests for further sessions (watch this space)! All of the bitesize sessions are available on demand below.
This month's edition of LGM also includes our newly launched Local Government Cyber Whitepaper that we published during National Cyber Security Awareness Month. We are increasingly supporting public sector clients impacted by security and cyber breaches. The whitepaper, along with our podcasts and articles on data and ransomware provide some helpful insights and pointers on this ever evolving area. As well as other topical legal articles– we have also included our podcast with Morenike Ajayi MBE as part of our celebrations for Black History Month and our longstanding commitment to support a diverse and inclusive legal profession.
List of articles:
Local Government Mini Conference
Our popular local government conference returned in October. Over two days, we ran six bitesize sessions with a mix of Trowers' and external experts, offering practical tips and solutions to topics such as regeneration, the climate emergency, housing, all things procurement and an update on the public subsidy regime.
National Cybersecurity Awareness Month
October marked National Cybersecurity Awareness Month and Trowers & Hamlins Cyber Team launched a series of reports, articles and podcasts including a white paper looking at Cyber Breaches in the Public Sector and how to respond to the growing risks. Listen to Gemma Fairbrother and Louis Sebastian discuss the critical need for public sector organisations to have stringent cyber security measures in place to best protect themselves against potential cyber-attacks in our recent podcast.
Black History Month
In celebration of Black History Month, Trowers Diversity & Inclusion Manager, Reg Amoah spoke to Morenike Ajayi MBE, Founder of Career Nuggets, an information hub for BME (Black Minority Ethnic) individuals, who want to advance in their chosen careers. Together they discuss the Black History Month theme of Action Not Words and you can listen to the full episode here:
To mark World Mental Health Day earlier in October our Employment & Pensions team dedicated their popular Trowers Tuesday webinar sessions to a range of themes relating to mental health and wellbeing in the workplace. They have also written an insightful article with advice on how local authorities can support their staff through the cost of living crisis.
- Click here to watch our Trowers Tuesday webinar
- Click here to read Wellbeing: not just a "nice to have"
- Click here to read The cost of living crisis – what can local authorities do to support their staff?
With the proposed reform of the data protection landscape through the Data Protection and Digital Information Bill, our Data Privacy team at Trowers have launched a series of webinars - Getting to Grips with Data: spotlight on data protection reform. In the first webinar in the series our data privacy experts gave overview of the opportunities it brings and the key issues to look out for. To watch the webinar on demand click the link below. You can also sign up for others in this series here.
Report: Funding and development of modular housing
Trowers & Hamlins conducted a survey in August 2021 to gauge views on and experience with modern methods of construction (MMC) within both the public and the private housing sectors; and in particular how close are we to making full use of the most advanced forms of MMC, so called “Categories 1 and 2” from MHCLG’s MMC Definition Framework - 3D and 2D primary structural systems.
Procurement Bill – update on legislative reform
On 11 May 2022, the Government introduced the much-anticipated Procurement Bill (the Bill) into the House of Lords where it received its first reading. The Bill follows an extensive consultation process on procurement reform following the UK's withdrawal from the European Union and is currently undergoing legislative scrutiny through the Committee Stages in the House of Lords.
Subsidy Control countdown
When Parliament enacted the Subsidy Control Act in April 2022; most of this new legislation did not immediately become law. This was done to: give the government time to implement statutory subsidy guidance and certain regulations/subsidy schemes; to give the Competition and Markets Authority or CMA (the new subsidy 'regulator') time to fully set up its subsidy advice unit and to ensure that the Competition Appeals Tribunal (CAT) was in a position to hear subsidy control cases/appeals.