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Press

Volume 476: debated on Monday 2 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what the cost of the press offices of (a) his Department, (b) its agencies and (c) its non-departmental public bodies were for each year since 1996-97; what the cost was in each quarter since 1 April 2007; and if he will make a statement. (189687)

The information is as follows.

Cost of Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform press office

£000

2003-04

n/a

2004-05

1,074

2005-06

1,106

2006-07

967

The DTI was reorganised in July 2007. Figures for BERR 2007-08 will not be available until after the accounts are audited.

Figures are not available for the DTI prior to 2004-05 as that year saw the introduction of a new accounting system and the accounts for previous years were not transferred.

Cost of UK Trade and Industry press office

£000

2003-04

n/a

2004-05

153

2005-06

143

2006-07

136

UKTI was formed in October 2003. They do not hold financial information for predecessor organisations.

Financial information for UKTI’s press office is provided from April 2004. There is no singularly identifiable cost centre for the press office prior to this date as costs were shared across various teams in the marketing department.

Total pay costs represent the costs of staff in post—comprising salary, overtime, NI and superannuation.

Cost of BERR NDPB press offices

£000

1997-98

1998-99

1999-2000

2000-01

2001-02

2002-03

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

ACAS1

50.9

52.5

54.1

55.8

57.5

59.3

61.2

63.1

65

67.1

Atomic Energy Authority2

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

100

Civil Nuclear Police Authority3

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

103

123

Coal Authority4

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Competition Commission

68.6

28.3

25.7

45.2

48.8

47.6

58.9

138.5

162.8

137.4

Competition Service5

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Energy Watch6

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

180

198

204

208

151

148

Hearing Aid Council7

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

National Consumer Council

77.5

52.5

82.9

96.4

98.3

76.2

84.3

88.5

90.9

94.1

Nuclear Decommissioning Authority8

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

PostWatch9

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

550

519

488

265

365

386

SITPRO Ltd.10

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

1 ACAS do not hold the broken down figures from 1996-97 to 2005-06 but has estimated these costs.

2 The UK Atomic Energy Authority does not employ dedicated press officers. Five members of staff in the UKAEA have media relations as part, but not all, of their duties. The UKAEA have estimated the staff costs and overheads per annum based on a FTE equivalent of two full time employees, based an estimate of the proportion of UKAEA communications team members’ time available to cover press officer functions.

3 The Civil Nuclear Constabulary was set up as a separate entity in 2005.

4 The Coal Authority does not have a press office.

5 The Competition Service does not have a press office.

6 Energy Watch, were set up in 2001. Their costs refer only to staff salaries.

7 The Hearing Aid Council does not have a press office.

8 The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority does not have a press office. Three Communications Managers are employed to undertake a variety of activities of which handling media inquiries is one element. A Head of Communications and Communications Director may also handle media inquiries.

9PostWatch was set up in 2001.

10 SITPRO Ltd. does not have a dedicated press office.

Figures for 2007-08 have not been included as this information has not yet been audited.

The following table details the cost of maintaining a press office function in each RDA. The press offices sit within a larger general marketing function, therefore the relevant costs of maintaining the press office function (staff salaries plus on costs) are shown. However, it is not possible to draw a direct correlation between the cost of the press office and the number of FTE staff because in many cases RDA staff fulfil other responsibilities in addition to press office duties.

Figures for 2007-08 have not been included as this information has not yet been audited.

Cost of RDA press offices

£000

1999-2000

2000-01

2001-02

2002-03

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

AWM1

22,000

25,483

86,635

112,776

139,601

154,886

158,293

EEDA2

4,637

25,468

16,576

25,047

29,710

46,562

92,985

97,643

EMDA3

45,000

48,295

55,803

55,811

52,462

LDA4

118,817

137,580

213,188

287,882

207,863

NWDA5

37,195

87,370

107,558

128,473

186,063

171,444

194,795

ONE6

106,305

111,900

117,790

135,103

175,242

92,478

153,208

195,380

SEEDA7

13,827

43,203

57,396

L98,557

149,572

191,185

154,046

SWRDA8

93,159

110,662

156,970

170,797

205,537

283,839

YF9

51,525

53,692

71,902

88,547

100,907

110,088

1 AWM press office costs for 1999-2000 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost.

2 In 1999-2000 the EEDA press office function was only carried out for the fourth quarter of the financial year. In 2001-02 the press office function was carried out by one FTE member of staff, but was vacant during quarter two of the financial year, reflected by lower costs for that year.

3 EMDA press office costs for 1999-2000 to 2001-02 are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost. Recent changes in the EMDA payroll system mean that it is not possible to calculate on costs such as national insurance and pension contributions for historic salary records, therefore the figures provided relate to pure salary costs only.

4 LDA press office costs for 2000-01 and 2001-02 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost

5 NWDA press office costs for 1999-2000 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost. In 2000-01 the press office function was not carried out for the entire final year, reflected by reduced costs for that year.

6 At ONE North East, the press office also carries out public relations functions on behalf of the agency, which accounts for the higher than average, costs in the first four years listed.

7 SEEDA press office costs for 1999-2000 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost.

8 SWRDA press office costs for 1999-2000 and 2000-01 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost.

9 YF press office costs for 1999-2000 and 2000-01 (ie staff salary and on-costs) are archived and are available only at disproportionate cost.