Our business

We are committed to providing the best and most cost-effective services to councils and councillors across England and Wales. We are politically led, committed to equalities and diversity and we aim to operate in an environmentally and financially sustainable way.

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The national membership body for local government

We will:

  • develop maintain membership levels amongst local authorities in England and Wales by continuing to offer membership benefits that meet the sector’s changing needs and expectations
  • launch a new online membership resource, setting out the benefits of membership with councils and councillors
  • offer a range of flexible options for councils to participate actively in our work including through an extensive programme of virtual and hybrid events and meetings 
  • seek to attract organisations with an interest in local government into our associate scheme.
     
A politically-led organisation

We will:

  • reflect the overall ambitions of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and the motion passed by the 2019 General Assembly, in the way that we work and ensure that our own organisation reflects best practice
  • ensure our member governance arrangements continue to reflect and respond to current priorities and the expectations of our membership
  • offer political support to individual councillors and council administrations through our political group offices
  • ensure that combined authorities, authorities with devolution deals and elected mayors are appropriately represented on our governance arrangements.
     
Using communications to persuade, influence and support councils

We will:

  • deliver first class communications that are highly valued and respected by local government and our stakeholders, to influence the issues that matter to councils, their residents and their communities
  • through our communications improvement work, support councils and help to raise the standard of public sector communications.
Financially sustainable

We will:

  • continue to develop existing and new income generation opportunities in order to diversify our sources of funding and ensure the long-term financial sustainability of the organisation
  • complete the refurbishment of the Stills in Farringdon to increase its capital value and maximise our income from commercial letting of here and 18 Smith Square
  • review options to maximise income from 18 Smith Square in the light of COVID-19 restrictions and the risks, constraints and potential new opportunities that presents
  • invest responsibly and seek to ensure that our contractors, joint ventures and pension funds have in place investment policies that further our objectives
  • continue to progress the transfer of pensions from Camden to Merseyside scheme.
Efficient business management

We will:

  • continue to streamline our company structures to deliver a solid and tax-efficient base from which to run our business, including the transfer of 18 Smith Square and the Stills to the LGA and the winding up of LGMB and LGA Properties
  • enter into a new ICT contract with Brent Council/Shared Services and with them, continue to develop our ICT to support improved efficiency and our new culture of flexible working
  • equip our 18 Smith Square meeting rooms with the technology to support a culture of flexible working for both employees and members
  • ensure that the suite of policies and procedures that underpin our business are comprehensive, clearly understood, updated regularly and reflect best practice.
Supportive people management

We will:

  • continue to roll out the leadership development programme for our current and aspiring managers as part of our wider commitment to develop our employees, including virtual and hybrid options to allow everyone to participate
  • deliver our employee health and wellbeing strategy
  • monitor staff wellbeing and feedback through our regular ‘temperature check’ surveys and put in place support and policies that reflect our new more flexible working practices
  • embed equality, diversity and inclusion into our core values, our policies and our practices.
Collective legal action

We will:

  • support groups of councils to mount collective legal actions or fight actions against them where we believe that they have a strong case, commissioning expert legal advice and sources of funding where appropriate
  • prepare New Burdens submissions on behalf of the sector where new legislation or regulations result in additional duties or costs to councils
  • provide legal advice on strategic issues with sector wide implications, including commissioning expert legal advice where appropriate.
Committed to a sustainable future

We will:

  • keep our policies and practices under review to ensure that they reflect the ambitions of the UN Sustainable Development Goals and contribute to combatting the adverse effects of climate change
  • encourage sustainable travel practices through our expenses policy, our flexible working practices and our continued participation in national sustainable travel initiatives including the Cycle to Work scheme
  • minimise the environmental impact of our two central London buildings and the way that we use and manage those buildings, including ensuring that our facilities management and catering contractors have environmentally sustainable policies and practices.

Our service delivery partnerships 

Public Sector Audit Appointments (PSAA)

PSAA is an independent company limited by guarantee incorporated by the LGA in August 2014. The Secretary of State for MHCLG has specified PSAA as an appointing person under the provisions of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. PSAA appoints an auditor to relevant local government bodies that opt into its national scheme and sets a scale of fees for the work which auditors undertake.

Local Government Mutual Limited and Local Government Mutual Management Services Limited

The Mutual is a shared ownership company between the LGA and a number of local authorities. Membership is only open to councils in membership of the LGA. The Mutual provides:

  • indemnity to local authorities in England and Wales as a cost-effective alternative to the traditional insurance market, including cover for all classes of business
  • risk management services to its member local authorities.

LGMMSL is a joint venture between the LGA and Regis Mutual Management that provides services to the Local Government Mutual.

United Kingdom Municipal Bonds Agency (UKMBA)

The LGA is a major shareholder in the local government-owned UKMBA, which delivers cheaper debt financing to councils, through the sale of bonds in the capital markets. We support and provide client side services to the Agency, as it works through its managed service provider to aggregate borrowing requirements and issue bonds.

Minimising the impacts of climate change

Flexible working

Our flexible working policy allows staff to balance working from home with time spent in the office, subject to the needs of the business. This means less journeys to work and a better work-life balance for our staff and their families. It has also enabled us to reduce by a third the amount of office space that we occupy.

Our ICT is designed to support flexible working, enabling staff to log into their LGA accounts from home on the days when they are not in the office or from trains when they are on the move.

Travel

Our expenses policy encourages staff to use public transport wherever practicable to help reduce the impact of the LGA’s business travel arrangements on the environment. The Members’ Scheme of Allowance stresses that wherever possible, councillors are expected to travel by public transport when on LGA business.

The LGA is committed to minimising the environmental impacts of its activities, reducing pollution and CO2 emissions and contributing to a healthy future for all. These are some of the ways that we deliver on that commitment.

Meetings

All meeting rooms at 18 Smith Square have access to video conferencing facilities. This enables members and staff to join and participate in meetings remotely, reducing the need for lengthy journeys to Westminster.

18 Smith Square

Secure cycle facilities and showers are provided in the basement of 18 Smith Square for those who prefer to cycle or run to work.

All lights in the building are energy efficient LEDs, with motion sensors that ensure they are switched off when not needed. Windows on the south and west of the building which are not part of the conservation area are double glazed to reduce energy loss. Recycling bins are provided on every floor.

Procurement

The LGA has a robust procurement policy and process, which underpins the importance of all our contractors being able to demonstrate a commitment to sustainability and combatting climate change. Our procurement documentation states: “In adhering to our commitments, the contractor should have systems in place to account for and minimise environmental impacts in all areas of contract delivery”.