Select Committee on Environment, Transport and Regional Affairs Fifth Report


  During questioning by Mr Brake, ENTRUST undertook to provide the Committee with supplementary information relating to Environmental Bodies (EBs) associated with Consulting or other Professional Firms. The undertaking was in the context of ENTRUST's proposal that, where appropriate and practicable (ie for most, if not all, non-trivial contracts), "Best Value" or competitive tendering discipline should be made mandatory within the Landfill Tax Credit Scheme. Such bodies comply fully with the Regulations but their contracting activities are not subject to a requirement for competitive tenders. However, all are provided with ENTRUST's advisory "best practice guidance", which strongly recommends this practice.

  ENTRUST believes that there are relatively few funded EBs associated with consulting or professional firms—35 out of 2,270 enrolled EBs. The funds potentially involved are not believed to be significant. Our estimate is that less (probably much less) than £0.7m out of £320m so far contributed to the Scheme could be involved. It is emphasised that ENTRUST has neither evidence nor reason to believe that any mis-management is occurring amongst these bodies.

  However, the importance of the reputation of the Scheme requires that any risk be minimised and we believe that mandatory application of best tendering practices would achieve this.

Dr Richard Sills

December 2000

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