In brief: Extra work on cards for council lawyers

Local government lawyers could face an extra workload if the Labour government gives local authorities the go-ahead to raise private sector finance for housing. Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott has indicated that he is keen to allow councils to borrow privately, as housing associations already do, although this has yet to emerge as official Government policy. Liverpool City Council's senior housing lawyer Jo Miller said if Prescott's plan got the green light it would have a major impact on council solicitors who will have to take on extra work and monitor financial deals between councils and the private sector.