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National Fraud Initiative

Volume 450: debated on Tuesday 24 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the estimated cost is of the 2006 National Fraud Initiative exercise to (a) her Department and (b) local authorities. (94567)

The National Fraud Initiative is an audit related exercise and is funded through fees charged to audited bodies, so there is no cost to the Department.

The Audit Commission consults audited bodies before it sets its fees scale. As this is an operational matter for the Audit Commission, I will ask its Chief Executive to write to the hon. Member and the answer will be made available in the Library of the House.

Letter from Steve Bundred, dated 24 October 2006:

Your parliamentary question on the estimated cost of the 2006 National Fraud Initiative (NFI) to local authorities has been passed to me for reply.

The NFI is run on a two year cycle, but local authorities are billed annually in order to spread the cost over both years. The cost to local authorities of the current exercise, NFI 2006/07, is set out in the table below.

£ (excluding VAT)

Authority type

2006 charge

2007 charge

Total charge

County council

1,175

1,175

2,350

County council with fire authority

1,515

1,515

3,030

London boroughs

1,250

1,250

2,500

Metropolitan borough council

1,175

1,175

2,350

Unitary council

1,000

1,000

2,000

District council—large1

600

600

1,200

District council—medium1

550

550

1,100

District council—small1

500

500

1,000

Police and fire authorities

340

340

680

Probation boards

265

265

530

Passenger transport

250

250

500

Pension authorities (local government)

250

250

500

1 Based on number of housing benefit claimants.

I am copying this to Angela Smith at DCLG and a copy will also be placed in the House of Commons Library.