HC Deb 30 June 2003 vol 408 c127W
Bob Spink

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary Department for Constitutional Affairs if he will make a statement on his Department's Regulatory Impact Assessment procedure; and how many RIAs have been received in respect of the Department over the last year. [120825]

Mr. Lammy

A Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) must be completed for all policy proposals that have a potential impact on businesses, charities or the voluntary sector.

Information on the number of RIAs that have been reviewed in respect of the Department in the last year is not held and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

From this year the National Audit Office (NAO) has a new role independently to evaluate a selection of RIAs. In their Annual Report, published in February 2003, the Better Regulation Task Force put forward suggestions of RIAs for the NAO to review.

The NAO review will focus on the quality of analysis in the RIAs and the thoroughness with which the RIAs have been undertaken. The findings and recommendations of best practice will be fed back to departments. It will play a valuable part in driving up standards of RIAs.