UK Government

Communities and Local Government: Denham welcomes Doncaster inspection

Press Release   •   Jan 26, 2010 11:21 GMT

Communities Secretary John Denham welcomed today’s decision by the Audit Commission to carry out a corporate governance inspection of Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council.

The Audit Commission took this decision in the light of serious concerns about the Council’s performance in the last two years and the threat to public confidence caused by recent events. The inspection will be carried out as soon as possible. The Government will provide any relevant information to the Audit Commission’s inspector.

In December, Doncaster council scored a 1 out of 4 in their annual Comprehensive Area Assessment and its services got two red flags. Last week, the Edlington Serious Case Review highlighted a number of failings in the council and other partners. Although there have been improvements in Children's Services, more needs to be done.

Representatives from CLG and DCSF held a productive meeting with Doncaster council on Thursday to discuss a package of support to help them make improvements. The inspection will inform that. Effective corporate governance will be an important part of how Doncaster can begin to deliver better services.

John Denham said:

"I welcome the decision by the Audit Commission to carry out an independent corporate governance inspection in Doncaster.

“I promise the people of Doncaster that we are prepared to use the powers we have to tackle any issues identified by the Audit Commission which require government action.”

Notes to editors

1. Support already offered:

• The Yorkshire Regional Improvement and Efficiency Partnership (RIEP) has made a commitment to provide additional resources to support the implementation of the Children and Young People’s improvement plan.
• Arrangements have been made to second four front-line social workers from neighbouring local authorities co-ordinated by Wakefield.
• CLG and HCA are working with Doncaster to support and implement joint action plans for housing issues.
2.  CAA is a tougher, less bureaucratic, more transparent, more outcome focused test, but this isn't the last word on raising performance. It is just one part of the Government’s efforts to give local people far better access to information held by local public organisations so they can challenge, compare or scrutinise their local services in order to drive up standards in their area.


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