Thursday, June 26, 2008

Squeeze on local government ?

I have often wondered how long it can be before local government feels the squueze of an Assembly Government making promises that it does not directly control. The latest report on delivering more affordable homes is another example of a WAG promise that partly (largely?) depends on the vageries/variations of local authorities.
Can the One Wales government afford to have a flagship policy that is does not more directly control ?
Will the idea that the Minister take more direct control of performance lead to changes in the existing relationships of central and local ?
Will people really care provided the homes are delivered ?
Of course it can always be convenient to have systems which mean a lack of delivery is linked to some complexity between differing layers of government responsibility. But a promise of 6500 homes won't be forgotten and with the downturn in the housing market it is looking more challenging, unless someone signs some big cheques for direct delivery of these homes.
There is also a need to get shifting. It takes time to build homes - ask a planner - so its time to get the skates on.

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