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Forensic Science Service

Volume 281: debated on Wednesday 17 July 1996

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will lay before Parliament the annual report for the Forensic Science Service. [38420]

I have today laid before Parliament copies of the Forensic Science Service's annual report and accounts for 1995–96.The FSS met or exceeded all its targets in 1995–96. During 1996–97, I expect the service to continue to improve its efficiency and effectiveness. The financial targets for the year are recovery of full economic costs; and a cash unit cost target of £81.33 based on an efficiency gain of 3.6 per cent. on the audited 1995–96 results. In view of the merger of the FSS with the Metropolitan police forensic science laboratory on 1 April, this target has been calculated taking into account retrospective adjustment to 1995–96 as if the merged organisation had existed throughout 1995–96. From 1996–97 onwards, the cash unit cost measure has been translated into the cost per process output hour rather than as previously the chargeable output day. The service level targets are to meet 90 per cent. of delivery dates agreed with customers; to maintain accreditation to UKAS NAMAS M10 and BSI.QA ISO 9000 series standards; and the completion of a customer satisfaction survey.