By prime minster, in this instance, Theresa May, who

By
definition, central government, commonly referred to as the UK government, is
the central government of the United Kingdom. The government is directed by the
prime minster, in this instance, Theresa May, who then elects all of the
remaining ministers. Despite bold declarations of local democracy local
government is subordinate to central government. Local councils, which is the
most common type of local authority, are made up of councillors who are elected
by the public in local elections. Local authorities in England and Wales are
devolved from central government, also known as local government. Local
government stems from the fact that central government could not deliver their
key services to all geographical areas sufficiently enough. Local government
will typically only have control over their specific geographical region, and
cannot pass or enforce laws that will affect a wider area. Local government and
authorities can do some of what central government can do, just on a smaller
scale.

With
reference to Morrisons, many parts of England have two-tiers of local
government: county councils, district, borough or city councils. Though in some
parts of the country, there is just one, also known as unitary tier of local
government, which provides all of the local services. The three main types are:
unitary authorities (in shire areas), London boroughs and metropolitan
boroughs. Residents of the capital and other major cities such as Birmingham,
Manchester, and Sheffield, meanwhile, fall under all-purpose London and
metropolitan borough councils. 1
In two-tier areas, services are divided between the two different types of
council: counties are responsible for schools, waste disposal, highways and
transport, social care, and libraries; while districts or boroughs oversee
housing, waste collection, planning decisions, and Council Tax collection.2
In some parts of the country, one tier of local government provides all the
local services listed above. In London and metropolitan areas some services,
like fire, police and public transport, are provided through ‘joint
authorities’. At a level below district and borough councils, and in some
cases, unitary authorities, lays parish, community and town councils. These are
elected, and deal with local issues such as: allotments, community centres,
grants to help local organisations. They also have the power to issue fixed
penalty fines for matters such as: dog offences, graffiti, fly posting, bus
shelters, war memorials, and litter (including many more). In sum, local
government powers and responsibilities have been pushed both upwards to central
government, and downwards to the regional arms of central government and to
other local bodies.

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Most
local authorities no longer rely solely on ‘in-house’ operations to deliver
either public services or their own internal functions.3
With reference to Morrisons, councils need money for two types of spending: to
build infrastructure (offices, roads, traffic crossings, schools, and housing);
and to operate and maintain these facilities on a day-to-day basis. The cost of
building things falls under capital expenditure;
that of staffing, lighting, heating, and repairing then, revenue expenditure.4
Local government’s funding is filtered through the funding of central
government. The four main sources of local government funding is: Central
government grants, business rates, council tax, and fees and charges. There are
also a wide range of additional central government grants for local bodies
which sit outside local council control. Some of these go to local councils,
but the councils are required to pass them directly on to others (e.g. funding
for primary and secondary schools), or can only spend them in line with
national requirements (e.g. housing benefit).5

A
central government appointed MP, Philip Hammond, also known as the Chancellor
of the Exchequer, is the specified person who is responsible for Britain’s
money and economy. The Chancellor’s specified responsibilities include: fiscal
policy (including the presenting of the annual budget (informing Parliament and
the populace how the government will spend the nation’s money)), monetary
policy, setting inflation targets, ministerial arrangements.

*There are two categories
for the different type of benefits: Non-contributory; awarded purely
needs-based
Contributory; awarded to
people based on both qualifying criteria and prior National Insurance
contributions record.
 

 

Specific grants are
granted to central government to pay directly for individual service, such as
helping to run schools, and to help those who are not supported by an income
directly, categorised as benefits*, in comparison to this, local authorities
would only use this funding for specified purposes. Another grant that is given
to central government, is know as the Revenue Support Grant, or Formula Grant.

 

 

 

A formula grant is funded by local business rates income, which is collected by
central government. A General Grant and a Formula Grant are added together to
make up the Formula Grant, which is then distributed to local authorities.  

Another
way in which the government funds is through business rates, which is tax on business
premises set by central government. Though they are collected through local
authorities, specifically district and borough councils, the money raised is
then given back to central government. It is then distributed back to local
authorities as a Formula Grant.

A
fifth of the percentage of central government funding is through council tax. Which
is a local taxation system used on domestic property. It pays for nearly a
quarter of all local services, which occasionally leads to inflation on tax due
to the central government not being able to keep up with the local government
spending. The Government exerts pressures on local councils to invest in and
improve their public services, and also to limit their spending so that budgets
do not increase in an unreasonable manner.6

Together,
council tax and business rates make up local authorities’ largest source of
income. In addition to Council Tax, grants, authorities derive income from:
leisure service use – swimming pools, sports centres, library fines, etc. The
collection of trade refuse, car parking tickets, income from private
contractors, and European Social Fund grants to companies, voluntary groups,
and communities in deprived areas to improve training and employment prospects.7

1 Morrison, J., 2017. Essential Public
Affairs for Journalists. 4th ed. Oxford, pg. 324.

2 Morrison, J., 2017. Essential Public
Affairs for Journalists. 4th ed. Oxford, pg. 348.

3 Local government: alternative models of
service delivery – Commons Library briefing – UK Parliament. 2018.

4 Morrison, J., 2017. Essential Public
Affairs for Journalists. 4th ed. Oxford, pg. 350.

5 UK Citizens’ Assemblies. 2018. How Is
Local Government Funded?

6 East Sussex County Council. 2018. Overview
of how local government finance works – East Sussex County Council.

7 Morrison, J., 2017. Essential Public
Affairs for Journalists. 4th ed. Oxford, pg. 367.