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Community right to challenge

The Localism Act 2011 created the Community Right to Challenge, which gives community and voluntary sector organisations and groups of council staff the right to 'challenge' local authorities by putting forward an ‘expression of interest’ in running their services.

A successful challenge would result in a procurement exercise in which the challenger would be able to take part along with other interested organisations.

The Act does not give an automatic right to the organisation expressing an interest to deliver the service, nor is it guaranteed the organisation will be successful in any procurement exercise.

Submitting an expression of interest

The Council has agreed it will receive expressions of interest in relation to any service, in the months of February and August. The Council has the right to reject expressions of interest received outside these time periods.

Expressions of interest should be sent to the Council’s Monitoring Officer, Democracy and Governance, Plymouth City Council, Civic Centre, Plymouth PL1 2AA.

Information required to accompany an expression of interest

  • Information about your financial resources (assets, cash reserves, investment available to you) and the same information about the financial resources of all partners or subcontractors you plan to use and have named in the submission.
  • Information about your organisational capabilities to deliver the service in question (staffing, skills, experience, track record, quality systems, policies and procedures) and the same information about the capabilities of all partners or sub-contractors (if you do not have all of these capabilities in place at the time you submit your expression of interest your expression of interest should not be rejected provided you can demonstrate to the authority’s satisfaction a plan to put any missing components in place by the time of the procurement exercise).
  • Information which specifies clearly what the service is, including the geographical area which your expression of interest relates to.
  • Information about the outcomes which you would achieve if you (or your consortium) were providing the service in question. This information relates to:
    • How your proposals would contribute to social, economic or environmental wellbeing of the relevant authority’s area.
    • How your proposals would meet the identified needs of users of the service
  • Finally, and only if you are employees of the relevant authority and looking to “spin-out”:
    • Details of how you propose to engage with other employees of the authority who would be affected by your proposals.

Also, the Council requests you to voluntarily include the following additional information:

  • An explanation of how a local (city based) workforce would be maintained and guaranteed
  • Identify what are the positive impacts to be brought to the local economy
  • State where the contract would be managed from
  • Advise how the bid would ensure compliance with the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012
  • Explain how the Council’s corporate plan and vision for the city would be supported.

What happens after you’ve submitted an expression of interest?

Expressions of interest will be approved, rejected or amended by the Council. The Council has set a maximum response time for responding to expressions of interest which is 30 days from the end of February or August.

When would a procurement exercise begin?

In setting the time for the commencement of the procurement exercise, the Council will follow its current procurement rules which are appropriate for the particular expression of interest.

Further information

Further general information on the Localism Act 2011 and the Community Right to Challenge is available on the Department for Communities and Local Government or My Community Rights websites.

Contact us

If you have any further questions please contact the Monitoring Officer.