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Protocol for working in the "Six Counties"



July 2002

Protocol for the South East "Six Counties" Associations

1. Local authorities in the North West, North East, Yorkshire and Humberside etc. are organised on a regional basis and are driving the Local Government Regional Forum (LGRF) agenda. It is important for the South East voice to be heard properly in the Local Government Regional Forum.

2. The Policy staff of the Surrey LGA and Association of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Authorities will co-ordinate the work of the "six counties" at the Local Government Regional Forum on a day-to-day basis.

3. The Members of the Local Government Regional Forum for the "six counties" will meet - generally well in advance of LGRF meetings - to consider the work of the Policy staff to achieve this, and to influence the agenda.

4. The Policy staff will ensure that all five local authority associations in the "six counties" are consulted about the work of the Local Government Regional Forum and receive regular reports-back from meetings.

Background notes to the Protocol

The LGA would like the county-based associations in the "six counties area" of the South East (Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Surrey, East Sussex, West Sussex and Kent) to work together as a regional grouping for the purposes of the Local Government Regional Forum.

The Local Government Regional Forum:

* represents all the local government regional groupings in England and Wales

* provides a framework for elected members and officers from the regional groupings to meet and determine/promote the regional perspective on national issues which affect local government

* advises the LGA on issues with a specific regional slant

* is owned by the regional groupings acting jointly within the framework of the LGA

* is serviced by regional groupings in turn jointly with the LGA.

Traditionally local government associations have been county-based, but since the birth of "regionalism", local authorities particularly in the north and midlands have been pressing hard to abolish county-based associations and strengthen "regional groupings". Regional LGAs now exist in all UK regions except the South East. The following county-based associations provide a service to their Member authorities in the South East:

Kent Association of Local Authorities (KALA)
East Sussex LGA
West Sussex LGA
Surrey LGA
Association of Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Authorities (HIOW)

In the case of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and Surrey, the groups re-formed following local government reorganisation with permanent offices and staff.

Also in the South-East, we have the Association of Councils in the Thames Valley Region (ACTVaR) which takes in all the authorities in Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and Oxfordshire, including seven unitary authorities (Milton Keynes and six Berkshire unitaries). ACTVaR is recognised by the LGA as a regional grouping.

Current Representatives

The "six counties" representatives on the LGRF are as follows:

1. The Chairman of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Association, namely:

Councillor A Jackson (Conservative)
11 The Dell
Vernham Dean

2. East Sussex Local Government Association representative

To be appointed

3. The Chair of Surrey Local Government Association:

Councillor G Woodger
Wellington Avenue
GU25 4QN

4. Kent Association representative:

Councillor Mrs W Marlow (Lab)
The Rifle Volunteers Public House
28 Wyatt Street
ME14 1EU

5. Councillor D Gillett (Conservative)

7 Diana Close
PO10 7UQ

David Gillett is standing in as the fifth member since the West Sussex LGA have not nominated anyone.

Last update: 18/07/2002
Author: Nick Goulder, Policy Manager

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