John Baker, Head of Local Public Services at EY, comments on today’s call for councils to make savings:

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Financial dividend for local public services can be realised but requires clear identification and removal of organisational and policy boundaries

"Community Budgets offer a real opportunity for local public services and the significant financial dividend that Eric Pickles highlighted this morning certainly exists. The focus needs to be on delivering fundamental, root and branch change in areas like health and social care integration and shared services. This needs to be viewed in the broader context of the deep financial challenge that faces Local Government and the remarkable success they have had in delivering efficiencies in this area.

If Local Authorities are to continue to be successful then they not only need to deliver on such areas, but also very clearly identify the ask of central government - to remove organisational and policy boundaries that threaten the continued success in delivering what are very significant efficiencies."