So what do those government plans to give local people more control over the spending of public money actually mean? According to the BBC:
"What it won't involve is giving a large stash of cash to a group of local people and asking them to get on and spend it how they like. The pattern established in areas like Bradford and Sunderland is to appoint panels of local people who broadly represent the make-up of their populations and then for this panel to consult other people on how the budget is used. This...might involve community-led debates, neighbourhood votes and public meetings. There'd also be training for local people on how budgets work and priorities set. Because of the potentially large sums of money involved, the process would have to be overseen by a council community development officer and the accounts properly audited."
Read the rest of the Beeb's explanation and decide for yourself whether it's going to end up being just a "top down" gimmick that looks like devolved power but isn't really, as the Local Government Association suspects. Then there's the question of what the sums of money involved - which might be as big as £23 million - should be called. One contender from Hazel Blears's new department is the "people's purse". Oh dear. Another is the "community kitty", which I'm inclined to think Ms Blears ought to be known as from now on.