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Six projects win £753,000 from Local Digital Fund


Mark Say Managing Editor

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Six projects have been given a total of £753,000 under the new round of Local Digital Fund awards.

They include projects aimed at improving online housing repairs services, making websites for planning applications easier to use, and giving residents smoother methods of online payment.

All six have emerged as projects for further development from the first round of funding, managed by the Local Digital team within the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG).

The awards are:

  • £350,000 to Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council, Leeds City Council and Manchester City Council to provide children’s social workers with better family context information to speed up their decision making.

  • £50,00 to Buckinghamshire County Council, Adur and Worthing Council, the London Borough of Croydon and Leeds City Council to prototype an open community directory of support services. This is aimed at helping residents and council officers discover which support services are available locally.

  • £100,000 to Southwark, Hackney and Surrey Heath Councils, along with the Greater London Authority, to look at user-centred digital planning application systems with the aim of making the process more efficient and transparent.

  • £100,000 to City of Lincoln, Southwark, Greenwich and South Kesteven Councils to develop an online housing repairs system and prototype common service patterns.

  • £80,000 to Barnsley, Allerdale, Cherwell, Huntingdon, North East Lincolnshire, Sheffield and South Northamptonshire to explore income management and e-payments. This is aimed at supporting a move away from legacy systems.

  • £73,000 to Worcestershire and Suffolk County Councils, along with Redditch and Bromsgrove Council, to work on using death registration data for better management of local authority housing.

Minister for Local Government Luke Hall (pictured) said: “There were 16 projects that received funding in round one, where 57 councils worked together to build better digital services. Today six of those projects will receive further funding to begin the next phase of their development.

“These projects cover a range of council services, from providing social workers with better information to speed up child referrals, and making the planning application process more efficient and transparent.

“All of this is helping local government improve service delivery and providing better value for money for taxpayers.”

Last month Hall announced that the MHCLG was ready to receive applications for the second round of funding, with the offer of grants of up £350,000. It will be open until 16 September.

Image by Chris McAndrew/UK Parliament, CC BY 3.0

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