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Update: local government

Peter Hill reviews a ruling allowing councils to combine their services, a challenge to the proposed reduction of funding for the BSF programme, and the deluge of new legislation set to radically change the shape of local government

28 February 2011

Shared services

In Brent London Borough Council and others (Harrow London Borough Council) v Risk Management Partners Limited [2011] UKSC 7, Risk Management Partners (RMP) brought an action against Brent Council based on the lack of local authority statutory powers to set up a mutual insurance company.

This gap was subsequently filled by a new specific power contained in section 34 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009, which is likely to be made redundant if the new general power of competence contained in the localism bill now before parliament is enacted.

RMP also brought a separate action against Brent alleging breach of the Public Procurement Regulations 2006 by Brent’s failure to conduct a tender for the process which led to the setting up of LAML. The Supreme Court has unanimously allowed the appeal pursued by Harrow Council as an interested party, overturning Court of Appeal and High Court ...

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