§ Mr. Heddle
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps he takes to monitor the progress of the national mobility scheme; and if he will list the powers available to him to ensure that all local authorities use their best endeavours to ensure that the scheme operates to maximum efficiency and effectiveness.
§ Mr. Waldegrave
The progress of the national mobility scheme, the performances of local authorities and other bodies participating in it, and the efficiency and effectiveness of the national mobility office which monitors and promotes it are matters for the National Mobility Steering Committee in which my Department plays a full part together with representatives of the local authority associations, and of other participating bodies. The scheme is voluntary, and my right hon. Friend has no powers over the activities of the participating authorities and bodies in this respect. However, since authorities have reported for 1986–87 the highest ever number of moves under the scheme, 9,058, my right hon. Friend is satisfied that the current arrangements, together with the wholehearted support which the local authority associations give to the scheme, provide the appropriate framework for ensuring authorities' effective and efficient participation.