HC Deb 29 October 1998 vol 318 c260W
Ms Blears

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will repeal the requirement for local authorities to publish their staff numbers locally. [57850]

Ms Armstrong

The Local Government (Publication of Staffing Information) (England) Regulations 1995 require authorities to publish locally each year their staff numbers, in a prescribed format which is based on the figures produced for the Joint Staffing Watch return. The Joint Staffing Watch group has decided that the Joint Staffing Watch return is no longer the most appropriate method of meeting central and local governments' needs for employment information, and the survey is to be discontinued. Trends in aggregate local authority employment will be monitored by inquiries carried out by the Office for National Statistics, which will be less burdensome on authorities. As there are a number of other mechanisms in place for ensuring that local authorities are accountable to their community for the efficient use of resources, I have decided to repeal the Publication of Staffing Information Regulations.