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Public Sector Land

Volume 403: debated on Monday 14 April 2003

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To ask the Deputy Prime Minister when English Partnerships was given its new strategic role for surplus public sector land; when its register of surplus public sector land will be published; what land has been transferred to English Partnerships from other public sector bodies; and if he will make a statement. [108427]

The Deputy Prime Minister gave English Partnerships a new strategic role for surplus public sector land on 24 July 2002 as part of his announcement about the outcome of the Review of the organisation.This new role will help ensure that we make better use of surplus public sector land. It will make an important contribution to the targets set out in "Sustainable communities: building for the future" which we published in February. Working with the Regional Development Agencies, English Partnerships will help ensure that wider Government objectives, such as housing and regional economic strategies, are factored into future site disposals.English Partnerships hope to complete an initial version of the register of surplus of public sector land in late May. They will then develop this into an interactive register, which will be available to all Government Departments, their agencies and non-departmental public bodies. The register will enable them to identify suitable sites to help meet their operational objectives and information from it may be made available publicly.No sites have yet been acquired by English Partnerships from other public bodies under their new strategic role. It is likely that any sites acquired by English Partnerships will be purchased at open market value.