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

Examination of Witnesses (Questions 120-122)



  120. There is no need for the Bill to be through quickly, is there, if it got into the next session of Parliament that is good enough.
  (Mr Soare) I think if you are looking at planning horizons, 2004 may sound a long way away but I think in a planning horizon it is actually not that far away. For local authorities budgeting on a three year cycle they are already into that. That is why we feel some certainty about moving to that system would be very important.
  (Mrs Wellen) If it is to be implemented from 1 April the budgets will be set and will be looked at in the summer so really realistically it needs to be in by June or July in order to be implemented for the following April because of the way that budget cycles work.

  121. You would be perfectly happy if the legislation received Royal Assent in the summer next year?
  (Mrs Wellen) It will need secondary legislation as well which would need to be in place by then. It will need primary and secondary legislation.

  122. You do not see any problem in including extra bits in the Bill if it slows its progress down?
  (Mrs Wellen) If it slowed its progress down so that primary and secondary legislation is not in place by the summer of 2003 then I think it becomes very, very difficult for local authorities to set their budgets for the new system to come in.

  Chairman: Your timetable is to be completed by the summer of 2003. Thank you very much for your evidence. Can we have the next set of witnesses please.

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