However, Milburn writes in the Times today:
Local services, such as the police and NHS, should be directly elected. And local communities should be positively helped to run local schools, housing estates and childcare centres.It's not a bad start. But Brown certainly isn't the man to develop a Labour renewal based on Localism - the concept is anathema to every fibre of his purblind presbyterian soul.
These policy priorities go well beyond the new Labour agenda of 1997. They go with the spirit of the times. In a more insecure world, where citizens are more informed, people want to exercise far greater power both in their own right and in their communities.This is the zeitgeist. It is about empowering citizens and communities so they can realise their own aspirations to progress. It contains a redefined relationship between state and citizen in which government controls less but empowers more.