Hammersmith and Fulham named council of the year
Mar 25 2010 By Dan Hodges
Town hall chiefs are celebrating today after Hammersmith and Fulham Council was crowned council of the year at an awards event for local authorities.
The council was praised by judges from the Local Government Chronicle for 'doing something very special in challenging times'.
Hammersmith and Fulham's leader, Stephen Greenhalgh, was also singled out for praise in the awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel in central London last night.
Local Government Chronicle editor Emma Maier said: "The whole of local government is expected to deliver more for less but Hammersmith and Fulham is a leader. With a very strong leader and a clear vision, it is reducing council tax while improving services and resident satisfaction."
Staff at all levels are engaged and supportive, she said, and the relationship between the council, the police and the PCT is 'impressive'.
Geoff Alltimes, the council's chief executive, also took over control of NHS Hammersmith and Fulham last year.
Ms Maier said the council had managed to stay 'at the top of its game' and was already putting into action its plan to cope with increasing funding challenges, adding that it had been 'contributing to the national stage' and had captured the 'zeitgeist' of local government.
The council is widely thought to be a model for how Tory leader David Cameron sees local authorities, with its policy of cutting the workforce, outsourcing services and selling council buildings to cut costs and lower council tax.
Receiving the award, Mr Alltimes said it was a 'fantastic achievement', adding: "This recognises not only the clear vision set by councillors but also the teamwork and passion that exists at Hammersmith and Fulham in delivering quality value-for-money services to our residents."
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