Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission: Cost Reduction: Department for Work and Pensions
HC 1763, Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General, Session 2010-12
- National Audit Office (NAO)
- TSO (The Stationery Office)
'Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission: Cost Reduction: Department for Work and Pensions (HC 1763)' examines the high risks involved in the plans of the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission to reduce its spending.
The planned cost reductions rely heavily on the introduction of a new child maintenance scheme and associated IT system. Yet IT costs have increased and the Commission risks repeating some of the mistakes made on the earlier child maintenance schemes.
The existing child maintenance schemes were problematic from the start and large backlogs of work built up. Efficiency has improved since 2006 and the cost of administering child maintenance has reduced, but there are strong indications that costs remain high and questions remain about the relative efficiency of the Commission.
There is already a £44 million shortfall in the £161 million reduction originally expected by 2014-15. The Commission is reliant on raising £71 million in fee income from parents as part of its planned savings, but these estimates are based upon assumptions that the NAO cannot substantiate. There is no contingency plan if forecast income for the last year of the Spending Review in 2014-15 proves optimistic, increasing the risk that additional cuts might be needed later in the Spending Review that could have an adverse effect on services.
The Commission needs to consider alternative options for restructuring and introduce measures to improve productivity.
|Format||Paperback||Published||29 Feb 2012|
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