Skip to main content

Departmental Pay

Volume 479: debated on Monday 1 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much was claimed in reimbursable expenses by press officers in her Department in each of the last three financial years. (221166)

The Department reimburses staff only for expenses necessarily incurred in the course of official business. Expenses reimbursed to press officers in the last three financial years are set out as follows where readily available.

£

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

DFT Central

1,776

1,528

4,247

DSA

1,925

1,883

1,620

HA

12,387

13,978

14,568

VOSA

696

859

711

The Highways Agency has seven regional press officers to support its new traffic officer service and seven regional control centres. These press officers are employed to raise awareness of the traffic officers and the agency’s role as network operator for England’s motorways and major A roads. These press officers have to travel between the regional control centres, outstations and Highways Agency offices, as well as travelling to media opportunities and to accompany journalists during visits to the HA network and premises.

Press officer activities in most Executive agencies are not carried out by staff or units solely dedicated to this purpose. GCDA and VCA have no press officers, and DVLA and MCA are unable to identify press officer reimbursements without disproportionate cost.