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Citizens Advice Bureaux

Volume 451: debated on Wednesday 8 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, pursuant to the Answer of 13 September 2006, Official Report, column 2323W, on citizens advice bureaux, what assessment he has made of the merits of (a) time-limited and (b) on-going support. (100175)

As the previous answer indicated, central Government will not be providing on-going support to Citizens Advice Bureaux in the UK and has therefore not carried out an assessment of support options for the bureaux. Approximately half the current support comes from local authorities that offer time-limited support agreements with possibility of renewal (but no guarantees).

A recent review of the Department’s funding of Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland concluded that there were advantages in having a mix of core funding and short-term project support. This can provide stability with the ability to be innovative and flexible to meet changing needs. I will be considering the report’s recommendations as part of our Comprehensive Spending Review planning process. The full report is on the DTI website at www.dti.gov.uk/files/file33785.pdf.