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Council changes look up - April 2019 - Google Sheets
In April five new councils in the south of England are being created.

I have made this lookup spreadsheet so that when doing stories that require historical data from the new areas, we can match them up with their old ones.

Victoria and Jason, I’m just copying you in in case there’s any interest for your stories.

The intention of this googlesheet is to help you use vlookups on the old ONS codes with the new ONS codes.

Dorset County Council is being abolished completely. This creates a small difficulty from a data perspective as if we’re doing population weighting, we’ll need to do it on the corresponding former districts (meaning the county and unitary shapefiles as they currently exist are going to be out of date and probably need caveating).

Two unitaries will be created to absorb its 8 districts.

Bournemouth, Christchurch, Poole is a new council, made from (you guessed it) the old Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole councils.

The rest of the former Dorset County Council area means a merger of East Dorset, North Dorset, Purbeck, West Dorset and Weymouth and Portland to form the even more “what it says on the tin” authority of Dorset Council.

Elsewhere, we have:

Somerset West and Taunton – a new district council formed of (wait for it) West Somerset and Taunton

East Suffolk – a new district council formed of Suffolk Coastal and Waveney

West Suffolk – a new district council formed of Forest Heath and St Edmundsbury
lookup  councils  data 
6 days ago by paulbradshaw
Thousands face incorrect benefit cuts from automated fraud detector • Sky News
Rowland Manthorpe:
<p>Thousands of people could soon be receiving letters threatening to cut off vital housing benefits as they face being incorrectly targeted by a new automated fraud detector.

The government-backed London Counter Fraud Hub, developed by BAE, has been hailed a success after being trialled in four boroughs - Camden, Ealing, Croydon and Islington.

Using vast quantities of data from millions of households, it is designed to target potential fraud cases involving the single person council tax discount, subletting in local authority housing and business rate relief and rating.

Ealing, the lead council for the project, found the automated elements of the system targeting single person discount fraud was 80% effective - which is seen as an acceptable benchmark.

With just over one million claimants of council tax single person discount in London, the London Counter Fraud Hub estimates it will detect around 40,000 fraudulent cases in the first year.

Critics say the 20% error rate is unacceptable as around 8,000 people will receive letters wrongly accusing them of fraud.</p>

80% effective is acceptable? The way that these systems are graded on a curve is remarkable. Recall the local boroughs which <a href="">were happy with "lie detector" telephone systems</a> a few years ago, yet couldn't really show that it worked in its own right. I'd like to see the trial results.
councils  fraud  detection 
22 days ago by charlesarthur
The Corporate Tithe is a collection of databases that show which private companies or charities benefit from public money, and how much they get.
data  OpenData  expenditure  councils 
26 days ago by paulbradshaw
The public service gamble: Councils borrowing billions to play the property market — The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
Councils across England have borrowed massive sums - in some cases the equivalent of ten times their annual budgets - to finance the purchase of real estate, our investigation has found.
In the last two years, the number of councils investing in property has doubled. In the past financial year alone, councils spent a total of £1.8 billion on investment properties, a six-fold increase from 2013-14.
Of biggest concern is the scale of debts accrued by four of the smallest local authorities in England - including Spelthorne Borough Council in Surrey, which says it is “heavily reliant on investment income” to fund the services it provides.
bureaulocal  dj  councils  housing  investment  t 
december 2018 by paulbradshaw

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