§ Mr. Walter
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will make a statement on service level agreements between Ordnance Survey and local authorities. 
§ Ms Keeble
The current service level agreement between Ordnance Survey and local authorities took effect on 1 April 1999 and will continue until 31 March 2004. This five year agreement covers a range of organisations including county councils, borough councils, district councils, fire and police authorities and national parks.
The agreement allows for the provision of both large and small scale mapping to all participating organisations. The benefits of the service level agreement to the local authority community are wide ranging. The agreement provides a vehicle from which local authorities are able to obtain digital and paper mapping with both ease and speed. This has led to the widespread use of Ordnance Survey digital map data across the local government sector for use in their support of the local community. This widespread take up of Ordnance Survey's map data also ensures consistency of use across local government.