Audit Commission: Expenditure

Communities and Local Government written question – answered at on 20 March 2007.

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Photo of Caroline Spelman Caroline Spelman Shadow Secretary of State (Office of the Deputy Prime Minister)

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the (a) budget and (b) administrative costs were of the Audit Commission in each year since its creation.

Photo of Ruth Kelly Ruth Kelly Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government

This is an operational matter for the Audit Commission and I asked the chief executive to write to the hon. Member. The chief executive subsequently replied to her on 14 March as follows:

Letter from Steve Bundred, dated 14 March 2007:

Your parliamentary question on the total budget and administrative costs of the Audit Commission in each year since its creation has been passed to me for reply.

The Commission does not have full records of its budget for each financial year since 1984. Instead, I have set out the Commission's actual costs for each year since 1984 in the annex to this letter.

It is not possible to answer your questions about administrative costs in the absence of any clear definition of this term. The definition of administrative costs employed within central government is not applicable to the Commission as the Commission does not have programmes run by third parties, and therefore all our expenditure is incurred in support of our statutory duties as set out in the Audit Commission Act 1998.

A copy of this letter will be placed in the House of Commons Library.

The Audit Commission's costs since 1984 are as follows:

Year end Period length (months) Total (£000)
1984 12 12,859
1985 12 17,347
1986 12 21,623
1987 12 23,625
1988 12 25,482
1989 12 28,169
1990 12 33,704
1991 12 46,383
1992 12 61,000
1993 12 73,775
1994 12 82,216
1995 12 88,657
1996 12 92,356
1997 12 93,130
1997 7 60,311
1998 12 104,983
1999 12 111,081
2000 12 143,847
2001 12 177,927
2002 12 212,972
2002-04 17 324,054
2005 12 230,736
2006 12 193,824

The Audit Commission changed its financial year end in 1997 so there are two sets of accounts for that year. Our financial year end was changed again in 2004, so the period 2002-04 is for 17 months, from November 2002 to March 2004.

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