HC Deb 19 May 2003 vol 405 cc625-6W
Mr, George Howarth

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what representations he has received from(a) business organisations, (b) trade unions and (c) community groups in support of his regional government proposals; and if he will place copies in the Library [90004]

Mr. Raynsford

Responses to the White Paper on regional governance—"Your Region, Your Choice"—were received from 20 business organisations, 10 trade union groups and 143 interest groups. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister did not record responses from community groups separately from those of other interest groups.

A full analysis of responses to the White Paper was made available in the Library of the House on 12 February 2003. The analysis document is entitled: "White Paper Your Region, Your Choice—Revitalising the English Regions. Summary of the comments and enquiries received following the publication of the White Paper on Regional Governance". The document can also be found on the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister website at http://www.regions.odpm.gov.uk/governance/progress/response/index.htm

Responses to the soundings exercise on the level of interest in each English region in holding a referendum on an elected regional assembly are still being received. We asked for responses by 16 May. My right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister will publish a summary of responses to the soundings exercise in due course.