Select Committee on Transport, Local Government and the Regions Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witness (Questions 460 - 466)



  460. Would you also like to consult with your colleagues in the Health Department to see what the cost of modernisation is in the National Health Service?
  (Mr Raynsford) I will certainly do so.

  461. Is it true that the Welsh Assembly and Welsh Authorities are the going to abandon much of best value?
  (Mr Raynsford) I had a useful meeting with the Welsh Assembly members, and specifically the member responsible for local government, just over a week ago who described the way they were introducing a new arrangement in Wales which would, in their view, have the same effect as best value via a different route.

  462. Does that mean they are going to abandon best value or they are not going to?
  (Mr Raynsford) They are using their freedom as a devolved body to approach this problem in a slightly different way. The Assembly made clear their view that this was about achieving the same objectives that we have.

  463. I certainly hope so. Is it going to be such a different system, is that because they do not think best value works?
  (Mr Raynsford) The impression I received was that while there would be differences it would not be as fundamentally different as some commentators have suggested.

Mrs Ellman

  464. But different?
  (Mr Raynsford) As is appropriate in a devolved framework.

Mrs Dunwoody

  465. Minister, we now know that most of this will be in the White Paper and that you will tell us in various notes the answers to the questions that you do not know and that you are quite convinced that the new scrutiny system for local government will be effective and people will be able to have an input at every level?
  (Mr Raynsford) I am satisfied the new scrutiny system for local government will help to improve local government efficiency and effectiveness.

  466. What would we do without the conditional tense in the English language? Thank you for your attendance.
  (Mr Raynsford) Thank you.

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