Queen's Speech: Public Bodies (Reform) Bill
Notes on: "The cost of bureaucracy and the number of public bodies will be reduced."
The purpose of the Bill
- Ensure that there will be a greater degree of transparency and accountability for all Public Bodies (‘quangos’); and provide Ministers with the powers to abolish, merge or transfer functions.
The main benefits of the Bill
- Cutting the number of public bodies.
- Reducing the cost of bureaucracy: anticipated year on year savings of £1 billion.
- New powers to allow Ministers to abolish, merge or transfer functions from public bodies.
The main elements of the Bill
- Ensuring greater accountability, transparency and efficiency in Government by reducing the number and cost of public bodies (quangos).
- Give ministers the powers to abolish, merge or transfer quangos back into Departments. As at 31 March 2009, there were 766 non-departmental public bodies. They spend over £46 billion a year and employ over 110,000 people.
- To review the functions of all public bodies every three years, as opposed to the current practice of every 5 years. The review will comprise a test: ‘Is the function technical; does it need to be politically impartial; and do facts need to be determined transparently?’
- The Coalition: our programme for government http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/media/409088/pfg_coalition.pdf
Existing legislation in this area
The Bill applies to England and Wales.
Published 25 May 2010