Media Watch – Jan 8 (am)

By on 08/01/2010 in Media Watch

Top Birmingham City Council Stories

Ongoing snow/gritting/school closures coverage
http://birminghamnewsroom.com/?p=6335

Work starts on Birmingham’s £193m library 
Work has begun on Birmingham’s new £193m library in Centenary Square.
http://birminghamnewsroom.com/?p=6158

Municipal banks fail to fill small business funding gaps (Financial Times) Only one out of four banks proposed by councils (Birmingham City Council, Essex County Council, Liverpool City Council and Ceredigion County Council) at the height of the credit crisis has got off the ground, lending just £263,000 against the hundreds of millions first mooted.

Birmingham councillor slams director Tucker on staff absences (communitycare.co.uk) The man brought in to fix Birmingham Council’s troubled children’s services has been told to ‘stop making excuses’ after blaming stress levels for high absence rates among social workers.

Birmingham office market dips in 2009 (propertyweek.com) Birmingham’s office market saw take up of 657,280 sq ft in 2009 – down from record levels in 2008 but similar to 2007’s figures.

Big Deficits Cloud Britain’s Future (Wall Street Journal)
In 2011, Birmingham City Council will receive 5% less from central government than last year. Council meetings no longer have biscuits; copies of the agenda.

Government launches ‘pay as you save’ scheme (oilfiredup.com) The government has recently launched a pilot scheme in partnership with several local authorities in England, that aims to help householders make a contribution toward cutting greenhouse gas emissions and improving energy efficiency. Birmingham City Council included.

Regional Headlines

Travel disrupted by snow and ice 
Freezing temperatures and ice are continuing to disrupt travel in the West Midlands.

Cameron aide Steve Hilton arrested at station in 2008 
The Conservatives have said a close adviser to leader David Cameron was arrested and fined £80 after a dispute at a train station in 2008. Steve Hilton, the Tories’ director of strategy, was briefly detained at Birmingham’s New Street station during an annual party conference.

National Headlines

No respite as UK hit by coldest night of winter 
The UK has suffered its coldest night of the winter so far with temperatures plummeting to -21.6C (-6.9F) in the north-west Highlands.

Woman charged with baby’s murder on Tyneside 
A woman has been charged with the murder of a baby boy whose body was found in a flat on Tyneside.

Expenses chief denies backing away from key reforms 
The man in charge of running a new system of MPs’ expenses has denied watering down radical reforms proposed after a six-month inquiry.

MPs call for clampdown on alcohol misuse 
For and against: Kevin Barron MP and industry spokesman Gavin Partington
MPs have called for a fundamental overhaul of government policy to curb excessive drinking.

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