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Local Authorities: Satisfaction

Volume 475: debated on Wednesday 7 May 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the average satisfaction rate with local councils according to (a) Audit Commission assessments and (b) performance against best value performance indicators was in each year since 1997. (202464)

Satisfaction with local authorities has been measured through the best value user satisfaction survey, which was undertaken by local authorities every three years from 2000-01 to 2006-07. The data from these surveys were collated and analysed by an external IT contractor on behalf of the Audit Commission and the Department. The latest general report is published on the DCLG website at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/localgovernment/pdf/324639

Latest data for individual authorities can be found on the Audit Commission website at

http://www.audit-commission.gov.uk/Performance/Downloads/2006_07UserSurveyBVPIswithDistricts.xls.

The satisfaction survey collects information on 13 attitudinal best value performance indicators. Overall satisfaction with each local authority is measured by best value performance indicator 3, and the averages for local authorities in England are as follows.

Percentage

2000-01

65

2003-04

55

2006-07

54

The Audit Commission assesses councils' performance through comprehensive performance assessment. It does not make separate assessments of customer service satisfaction with councils. In determining the overall CPA performance ratings and direction of travel statements of councils, the Audit Commission will take into consideration the results in the best value user satisfaction surveys, as well as other non-attitudinal evidence on performance.

Since the CPA (the performance management framework for councils in England) was introduced in 2002 councils throughout England have continued to significantly improve their overall performance, as the following table illustrates.

CPA 2002 results

CPA 2003 results

CPA 2004 results

cpa 2005 results

CPA 2006 results

CPA 2007 results

Number of single tier and county councils achieving excellent/good CPA rating1

76

82

101

n/a

n/a

n/a

Percentage

51

55

67

Number of single tier and county councils achieving 3 or 4 star rating1

n/a

n/a

n/a

102

119

123

Percentage

68

80

83

1 The Audit Commission introduced a new framework for CPA in single tier and county councils from 2005-08, CPA—‘The Harder Test’. This framework is a harder and different test to the framework used from 2002-04 and CPA categories were renamed from 2005 onwards to reflect this change.