Office of The Deputy Prime Minister Committee
Proposed Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity
HC 666, First Report of Session 2010-11 - Report, Together with Formal Minutes, Oral and Written Evidence
- House of Commons - Communities and Local Government Committee
- TSO (The Stationery Office)
The draft Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity is intended to give effect to the Coalition agreement commitment "to impose tougher rules to stop unfair competition by local authority newspapers", particularly by restricting the permitted number of issues to four a year. Local authorities, though, are required to account to local residents for how they take decisions and how they spend council tax revenues. They have a duty to communicate effectively enough with local residents that they have adequate awareness of how to access and use local services.
In the report 'Proposed Code of Recommended Practice on Local Authority Publicity (HC 666)', the Communities and Local Government Committee found little hard evidence to support the view of the commercial newspaper industry that council publications are, to any significant extent, competing unfairly with independent newspapers at present. It believes that the provisions in the proposed Code relating to cost effectiveness, content and appearance are sufficient to deal with the excesses of certain council papers, which are in any case confined to only a very few examples.
The report also considers the provision of the proposed Code which sets out to prevent local authorities from hiring 'lobbyists'. The issue of the use of public money on political lobbying is an important one which the Government should address, and the Committee recommends that the Government work with representative organisations for all tiers of local government, with the UK Public Affairs Council and the Chartered Institute of Public Relations Local Public Services Group to develop a Code of Practice for local authorities on the use of lobbyists.
|Format||Paperback||Published||14 Feb 2011|
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