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Financial Management Initiative

Volume 114: debated on Thursday 9 April 1987

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asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he will make a statement on the effect on his Department of the financial management initiative.

My Department's approach to financial management is set out in the annual departmental plan. A copy of the 1986–87 plan is in the Library of the House. The 1987–88 plan will be available shortly.Particularly good progress has been made in executive units, which employ some 90 per cent. of the Department's staff. More of them are now individually accountable units with challenging targets for controlling unit costs and improving quality of service. As examples of progress, the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Centre last year achieved its target of turning round 90 per cent. of transactions within 8 days, while reducing the real unit cost of each transaction by 2 per cent.; unit costs in the vehicle inspectorate increased by only half the rate of inflation. Motorway maintenance work has been speeded up by increased use of lane rental contracts, reducing costly delays to motorists and the road haulage industry.