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Regions White Paper

Volume 403: debated on Thursday 10 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress the Department has made towards the aim in the White Paper, "Your Region, Your Choice", of assessing the balance of staff between the centre and the regions in terms of effective policy design and implementation; and what examples there have been since the publication of the White Paper of the Department deciding between locating new streams of work (a) in and (b) outside London and the south-east. [108569]

My Department is very aware of the importance of ensuring that the regions have a role in its policy design and implementation. The Department's regional agencies are largely responsible for ensuring the cultural and sporting agenda is delivered, and we already make considerable efforts to ensure that they and the Government Offices in the regions participate in the policy making process. In addition, the Department's staff embedded in the Government Offices for the regions and the eight Regional Cultural Consortiums are responsible for championing the Department's interests in the regions.

We are currently developing the DCMS policies outlined in the White Paper, and as part of this, we will be giving full consideration to the impact the creation of one or more Elected Regional Assembly will have on staffing at the centre and in the regions.