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DoE FIRST TO GO BEFORE POWER BALANCE PEERS

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DoE officials will be the first delegation to give oral evidence to the House of Lords select committee on relation...
DoE officials will be the first delegation to give oral evidence to the House of Lords select committee on relations between central and local government.

The civil servants will give evidence next Tuesday. A cross-party group from the local authority associations will speak to the committee on the following Tuesday.

The committee has invited 140 peers, as well as other individuals and organisations, to submit evidence.

It is chaired by former Cabinet secretary Lord Hunt of Tanworth. Other members include Lords Beloff, Dubs and Tope, Baroness Perry of Southwark, Baroness Platt of Writtle, Baroness Hamwee, Lord Plant of Highfield, Lord Sefton of Garston, Lord Wade of Chorlton and the Earl of Kintore.

The committee will take evidence on 'the relationship between central government and local authorities in Great Britain'. It will study four elements of the relationship:

- The balance in power between the two arms of government

- The effect of central/local relations on council activities as 'regulator, service provider and community leader'

- The need for regulation of councils and what form it should take

- The financial relationship and the desirability of councils having greater financial independence The committee has also produced a list of 23 possible questions to answer. A report is expected by the end of July.

Peers have previously investigated sustainable development and medical ethics.

Most of the organisations contacted by LGC this week said they would be submitting evidence to the committee. Any council, interested body or individual that wishes to submit evidence should contact the clerk to the committee at the House of Lords, London SW1A 0PW, tel: 0171 219 5662.

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