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Smoking: Public Places

Volume 461: debated on Wednesday 20 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what her Department’s most recent estimate is of the cost of the public smoking ban to local authorities in England; and what funding is being provided to councils. (143540)

I have been asked to reply.

The anticipated costs and benefits of smoke-free legislation is set out in the Departments final Regulatory Impact Assessment published in December 2006. Copies are available in the Library.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 5 March 2007, Official Report, column 1698W, for details on funding for local authorities.

The Government provide funding for local authorities’ new responsibilities to build compliance and, where necessary, enforce smokefree legislation under the principles of the New Burdens Doctrine by way of a non-ringfenced grant. The grant has been made in line with the Government’s commitment to provide freedom for local authorities in the allocation of their budgets.