§ Mr. Brandon-Bravo
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if, in the light of the differing priorities and needs of those shire counties which contain within their boundaries a large urban concentration or former county borough, he will review the policy of using counties as highway authorities, and districts as their agents.
§ Mr. Peter Bottomley
No. The Audit Commission report on highway agency arrangements (September 1987) found that county councils are, in general, better placed than the vast majority of districts to exercise the full range of highways authority responsibilities. It recommended that the way forward was to place agency arrangements on a more systematic and businesslike footing. The arrangements made in particular cases can and should reflect the capabilities of individual district councils.