Best Practice Budget Consultations
CPD/APC Credits: 15
Local authorities are required to consult their residents. Over the years, most councils have evolved a mechanism for achieving this, though many have faced judicial reviews from pressure groups or citizens anxious about changes to cherished public services.
Due to the intensely political nature of high-level budget decisions, officials have often felt constrained in their ability to insist on particular consultation practices at the early stages of budget allocations. They have, generally, been able to secure a consistent approach to wider public consultation once detailed proposals have been prepared. Many officials and elected members feel uneasy about current practice, particularly since the KE v Bristol CC judicial review in 2018. They think it may be
time to reconsider whether they are undertaking this task in the most appropriate way. This Workshop will help.
Who is it for?
Local government officers and elected members involved in the budget-settng process, particularly where it involves stakeholder dialogues, impact assessments and public engagement.
As soon as possible after agreeing the assignment, an experienced Institute Associate will research the Council’s existing practices, discuss the overall financial outlook with the client and propose a detailed agenda for the Workshop normally involving 8 – 16 people.
Key Learning Points
Under normal circumstances an experienced Institute Associate will facilitate a 3 hour Session consisting of these four major elements:
• How well does our current budget consultation process work?
• Challenges and constraints
• Current best practice – would they be appropriate here?
• Moving forward