§ Mr. Austin Mitchell
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what are the restrictions currently placed on local authorities to prevent expenditure on political propaganda; and what tests are applied in determining if a particular item is beyond or within the rules. 
§ Sir Paul Beresford
The Local Government Act 1986 prohibits local authorities from publishing, or assisting others to publish, material which, in whole or in part, appears to be designed to affect public support for a political party. The code of recommended practice on local authority publicity, issued by my Department under that Act, states that any publicity used to comment on the proposals or policies of central or local government must be accurate and objective and not appear to be prejudiced, unreasoning or a political attack on any of the policies or proposals in question.