§ Mr. Atkinson
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what guidelines are issued to local authorities to take account in the contracting-out service of the training and apprenticeship policies of the tendering companies.
§ Mr. Heathcoat-Amory
Under the terms of section 17 of the Local Government Act 1988, the training of a contractor's workforce is a non-commercial matter which local authorities must not take into account when awarding contracts for the supply of goods or materials, the supply of services or the execution of works. The Department's circular 8/88 advises local authorities that consideration of the number or proportion of apprentices to be employed by a contractor is not allowed during the contractual process.