§ Lord Melchett
asked Her Majesty's Government:
Whether they are proposing to investigate, with the aid of management consultants or other means, the staffing and organisation of the Nature Conservancy Council (NCC); what consultations they have had with the NCC's Council about this proposal; what consultations they have had with representatives of the NCC's staff about this proposal; and what advice they have received from the NCC on the likely effect of such an investigation on the speed and efficiency with which the NCC is able to implement the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, and in particular to re-notify all owners and occupiers of Sites of Special Scientific Interest, as they are required to do under the Act.
§ The Earl of Avon
Her Majesty's Government intend to conduct a review of the staffing and organisation of the NCC, the details of which have not yet been finalised. The NCC has been consulted and the views of its council are now being considered. Consultation with NCC staff is, of course, a matter for the NCC itself. The NCC has not advised Her Majesty's Government that the review would delay the implementation of the Wildlife and Countryside Act.