To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, how many representations he has received from (a) local authorities and (b) members of the public concerning the extra funding necessary to implement provisions in the Environmental Protection Bill; and if he will make a statement.
My Department has received a number of comments from both local authorities and members of the public about the Environmental Protection Bill. The vast majority have been supportive of the new provisions. Some representations have been made about funding to implement relevant parts of the Bill, but I have been able to give the assurance that the new charging systems provided for in parts I and II of the Bill will provide local authorities with an entirely new source of finance from which to fund their new duties. Savings as a result of streamlined procedures for dealing with statutory nuisance under part III will also release resources. We are currently seeking local authorities' views on the cost of implementing the draft code of practice on litter and refuse in part IV of the Bill, and additionally we have commissioned consultants to undertake a survey of 20 local authorities to determine whether extra resources will be required.