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Official Hospitality

Volume 493: debated on Monday 8 June 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Meriden (Mrs. Spelman) of 7 May 2009, Official Report, column 397W, on official hospitality, (1) if she will make it her policy to publish declarations of (a) interest and (b) gifts and hospitality made by her Department's special advisers; (277141)

(2) what financial thresholds trigger requirements for her Department's special advisers to make a declaration of (a) interest and (b) gifts and hospitality.

Civil servants may not accept gifts, other than in very limited circumstances. Where a gift is accepted, departmental procedures require that details of all gifts, other than items such as diaries, calendars or other small items of modest value bearing a company’s name or insignia, must be declared in writing.

All hospitality received by staff, with the exception of light refreshments and meals provided in the course of normal departmental business must also be declared in writing. Government publish information on hospitality received by departmental board members. A copy of the published board hospitality report can be found in the Library of the House, and on the Cabinet Office website at:

In accordance with the requirements of the Civil Service Management Code, civil servants, including special advisers, must declare any business interests which they would be able to further as a result of their official position.