Plans to tackle failure of Nottingham City Council

Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick has announced new measures to address the serious failures at Nottingham City Council.

An Improvement and Assurance Board, made up of experts in governance and finance, appointed by the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, will be set up to help the council deliver a non-statutory review’s recommendations on governance and company ownership.

As a result, the council must put forward their three-year recovery plan by the end of January 2021 outlining how they will improve their financial position and review their investments. They must submit progress reports to the government on a quarterly basis.

The measures come in response to a rapid non-statutory review commissioned in November to examine serious governance and risk management issues, including those associated with the council’s private energy company Robin Hood Energy. The review team found that the council’s financial strategy and commercial investment decisions over the past four years have resulted in a very significant budget gap and low levels of reserves.

Jenrick said: “The rapid review into Nottingham City Council highlighted appalling financial and management issues within the council. Taxpayers and residents have been let down by years of disgraceful mismanagement and inept ventures such as Robin Hood Energy, that have wasted tens of millions of pounds that should be being spent on public services. These must end now. The council has a window in which to demonstrate that it is capable of running the city and turning the situation it has created around.

“I will be appointing an independent expert panel to help them urgently address this by producing and delivering a comprehensive recovery plan. Given the scale of the changes needed, it is vital that the council act quickly for the benefit of the communities they serve. I will be monitoring progress closely and do not rule out further action.”