NALC written questions in the House of Lords
The National Association of Local Councils (NALC) receives answers to written questions submitted to the House of Lords.
NALC president Baroness Ros Scott of Needham Market and vice-president Lord Lytton tabled several written questions in the House of Lords. The questions covered the government’s plans to raise awareness for local (parish and town) council elections in May 2023, to publish the total cost of dependent carer’s allowance, to review the audit threshold, to celebrate local councils that have received an award through the Local Council Award Scheme, and the impact of Martyn’s Law on local councils.
Baroness Scott of Bybrook, parliamentary under-secretary of state for the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, responded that the responsibility for raising awareness for local elections lies with principal councils through posting notices and delivering elections locally and the Electoral Commission.
Baroness Bybrook confirmed the government have no plans to publish the total cost of dependent carer’s allowance payments to councillors as this is a matter for the local authorities. The Local Authorities (Members’ Allowance) Regulations 2003 outlines that individual authorities are required to publish the total sum of councillor allowances, including the dependents’ carers’ allowance.
Baroness Bybrook stated that as part of the Redmond Review, the government are committed to reviewing the threshold for audit requirements relating to smaller authorities. She noted that the government’s broader work on the local audit would consider these requirements.
Lord Lytton asked what plans the government has to celebrate local councils that have received an award through the Local Council Award Scheme. Baroness Bybrook stresses the importance of local councils in improving the quality of life and well-being of their communities so the government fully supports schemes which support their achievements.
Lord Sharpe of Epsom, parliamentary under-secretary of state for the Home Office, answered Baroness Scott’s question on Martyn’s Law. He stated that the Home Office is ensuring this Bill is proportionate to not place undue burdens on local councils.