§ Mr. Chris Smith
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what research his Department is carrying out on council tenants' attitudes towards the right to buy in its preparation for national publicity on the increased discounts which will be available for sitting tenants to buy their council home if the Housing and Planning Bill becomes law; whether he intends to publish the findings and recommendations; what is his Department's budget for this research, and for this national publicity.
§ Mr. Tracey
The Department has commissioned an independent research company to conduct a brief study into the level of awareness of the right to buy among council tenants in different parts of the country. The study is limited in scope and is designed to assist the Department to inform tenants as effectively as possible of their new rights once the Housing and Planning Bill has become law early next year. As such, the findings of the survey will not be of general interest and there is presently no intention to publish them. The current estimated cost of the study is just under £40,000. Details of our proposed campaign to inform tenants of the changes in the law have not yet been fully worked out, but the budget for the exercise is likely to be in the region of £0.5 million.