§ 26. Shona McIsaac
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on his proposals to improve the Planning Inspectorate's service to the public. 
§ Ms Beverley Hughes
The Planning Inspectorate strives continuously to improve its service to the public. They have dramatically improved handling times for deciding planning appeals and are well on the way to achieving the Public Service Agreement targets which my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced in March 1999. Improvements to the procedure for processing planning appeals will be implemented during 2000–01. A consultation paper on proposals to improve the processing of enforcement appeals was published last month. The Inspectorate are converting all of their guidance leaflets into Plain English and have been awarded seven crystal marks by the Plain English Campaign. The Inspectorate will continue to invest in new IT systems and will be relaunching their website shortly.