HC Deb 12 July 1999 vol 335 c62W
Mr. Burns

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what percentage of mail received in the last 12 months for which figures are available from right hon. and hon. Members was replied to by him within,(a) up to 20 days, (b) 21 to 30 days, (c) 31 to 40 days and (d) over 40 days. [90151]

Mr. Darling

Figures are not available in the format requested. In the 12 months ending June 1999, Ministers replied to 47 per cent. of letters from right hon. and hon. Members within our target of 20 working days, 37 per cent. within 21 to 40 working days; and 16 per cent. were sent after 40 working days. So far this year, Ministers have answered 60 per cent. of letters within 20 working days. Ministers in my Department reply to around 18,000 letters a year and we are committed fully to improving turnaround times.