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Departments: Public Participation

Volume 461: debated on Thursday 21 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what proportion of his Department’s administration costs was spent on running public consultations in 2006-07; (142738)

(2) how many civil servants in his Department worked on public consultations in the 2006-07 financial year;

(3) how many public consultations his Department has undertaken since its institution.

Since its institution in June 2001 until December 2006, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has undertaken 581 public consultations.

The breakdown, per year, is as follows:

June 2001-December 2001


January 2002-December 2002


January 2003-December 2003


January 2004-December 2004


January 2005-December 2005


January 2006-December 2006


Each consultation is worked on by policy staff from the Department but information is not held about the proportion of the Department’s administration costs that are spent on running public consultations.

Similarly, information is not held centrally about the number of civil servants in the Department who worked on public consultations in the last financial year. This information could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.