A local authority has defied an order by Communities Secretary Eric Pickles to cease monthly publication of its newsletter.
As reported on HTFP in November, Mr Pickles wrote to Lambeth Council demanding it change the publication frequency of its Lambeth Talk magazine from monthly to quarterly, by January.
However, the South London authority has not complied with the instruction and has printed this month’s edition of the newsletter.
Lambeth Council has declined to comment on the matter, but it is understood it will continue monthly publication pending further correspondence from the Department for Communities and Local Government.
In September five local authorities were told by Mr Pickles to scale back the frequency of their newsletters or face legal action.
The Local Audit and Accountability Bill, which limits the publication of council newspapers to four per year, was passed into law in January.
In a letter to Lambeth Council, Mr Pickles said the government wanted to create an environment “which is as conducive as possible to the flourishing of independent and politically free local media”.
But the authority’s chief executive Derek Anderson responded that the benefit to people living in the borough of publishing monthly outweighed the possible negative impact on its local press, and that there had been no complaint that Lambeth Talk had affected circulation in the area.
DCLG has yet to respond to HTFP’s request for a comment on the issue.