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Local Government Reform

Volume 79: debated on Wednesday 22 May 1985

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment, in the event of the abolition of the Greater London council, if the Government will ensure that the Greater London council's successor bodies provide facilities for the disabled at the same level as that currently provided by the Greater London council.

I see no reason why abolition of the GLC should harm the interests of disabled people.

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment which consultants have been (a) approached and (b) engaged by his Department to carry out an initial appraisal of the tasks in order to draw up for use by the residuary bodies (i) an initial brief, (ii) an action plan, (iii) a model organisational structure and (iv) suggested before. The resulting figures for the south-east region are those which were provided to the London and South East Regional Planning Conference Housing Issues Group as provisional results and at its request in December last.These provisional results were scrutinised in the Department and the method was then improved by splitting the age groups into five-year bands for England as a whole. In particular, this corrected for the effect of a relatively large number of births in the 1960s and a lower number in the 1970s which meant that the 15 to 29 age group in 1981 contained an unusually high proportion under 20 and in 1991 an unusually low proportion under 20. The headship rates were derived from only a 10 per cent. sample of the census data and, for this reason, projections for sub-divisions of England have not been made in that detail. Instead, the estimates for the different types of households—married couples, lone parent, one person and "other" households—within the broader age-bands used initially have been adjusted for each area pro rata to the changes in the England totals. The changes between the provisional and final published estimates are predominantly among young single people living on their own or heading "other" households and these households are disproportionately common in the south-east and particularly in London.The projected figures for 1981 and 1991 are as follows:arrangements for liaison with the local authorities in their areas, in the event of the abolition of the Greater London council and the metropolitan county councils; and what is the estimated budget for the consultants' costs.

My Department has recently commissioned Price Waterhouse to undertake such a study in relation to the London residuary body, and Peat Marwick in relation to the six metropolitan counties. It is not our practice to reveal details of fees negotiated.