Select Committee on Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards Annual Report 2003-04


5 Resourcing the work

5.1 The table below sets out the cost of running my office during the last three financial years and the estimated cost during the current year. Figures for previous years were given in my report for 2002-03.[35] The bulk of the readily identified costs of the office are direct staffing costs. Most of the general office running costs, including accommodation and IT/IS support, are absorbed by other parts of the House administration and cannot easily be disaggregated, and are therefore not included in the running cost figures.

Cost of the office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards 2001-02 to 2004-05

2001-02
2002-03
2003-04
2004-05

(Estimate)
Staffing etc293,810 273,101301,425 313,000
Running Costs 2,003 40633,833 1,000
Total 295,813 273,507335,258 314,000

5.2 Reporting to the House in 2002, the House of Commons Commission confirmed that it would make available whatever resources were judged necessary for me to do my job.[36] Additional demands arose on my office from 2 different quarters in 2003-04: 2 instances of long term sick absence among staff and a particularly complex inquiry (the latter extra cost arising from the transcription of the oral evidence given before me). Other than normal salary increases it is these twin pressures which account for most of the increase in the staffing and running costs respectively of my office in 2003-04 over 2002-03. I am grateful to the Commission for its willingness to absorb these unforeseen additional costs.

5.3 The 2 instances of long-term sick absence and the complex inquiry in the second part of the year also imposed additional strains on my small team of colleagues. I am grateful to all concerned for carrying these so professionally and without, so far as I am aware, any reduction in the quality of the service to the House and the public.

5.4 In my last report, I mentioned my intended introduction of a system of electronic data management which would help handle the material generated by a large complaint investigation. This was successfully piloted in 2003 and has already proved its potential in enabling my office to keep track of and retrieve documents. In the coming year we aim to increase the use we make of this system to help further our operational effectiveness.


35   HC 905, Session 2002-03  Back

36   HC 598, Session 2001-02 Back


 
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