§ Mr. Tom Clarke
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will indicate the average time taken by his Department to provide a substantive answer to letters from right hon. and hon. Members during the 12 months period to the latest available date.18W
§ Mr. Brittan
The information for the past 12 months could not be provided without disproportionate cost. A computer system has, however, been introduced recently which records the arrival of all correspondence from right hon. and hon. Members and monitors progress up to the dispatch of the substantive reply. Statistics for average handling times should therefore be available in due course.