My Department's current funding agreement with Gambling Commission sets a target of achieving 3 per cent. value for money efficiency savings, year on year, over the period 2008-09 to 2010-11. In 2007-08 the Commission's total expenditure was £ 16.699 million. This fell to £15.291 million in 2008-09. The Commission had a maximum of 300 employees that figure has reduced to 221. While it is right that the Commission continues to drive efficiencies, I am sure that the hon. Member would agree that the Commission must have adequate resources to discharge its responsibilities effectively.
I have regular discussions with a wide range of stakeholders and partners including local government, trade associations, individual businesses and those concerned with problem gambling, as well as the Gambling Commission itself, about all aspects of gambling regulation, including the role of the Gambling Commission.
(2) what steps have been taken by the Gambling Commission in response to the concerns raised by the Hampton Review on the commission's operations; and if he will make a statement.
The Hampton Implementation Review of the Gambling Commission in 2009 suggested that, if the Commission’s plans were implemented, it would be in a strong position to demonstrate the Hampton principles throughout its work.
The Commission’s response to the review is available on their website. The implementation of those plans is a key programme in the Commission’s current business plan and they are making good progress on these measures. I will ask the chief executive of the Gambling Commission to write to the hon. Member with further details of how it is responding to specific points raised in the Hampton Review. Copies of this letter will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.
The Commission has undertaken a number of simplification measures and these, together with future plans, are set out in a Gambling Commission annex to my Department’s 2009 Simplification Plan which can be found on the DCMS website here: