Magazine article Public Finance

Round-Up

Magazine article Public Finance

Round-Up

Article excerpt

Planning minister Yvette Cooper (pictured) has welcomed a reduction in the backlog of planning appeals, which has been slashed from 4,700 in November 2004 to around 600 this year. The figures are contained in the Planning Inspectorate's annual report. But the report also shows that the inspectorate failed to meet deadlines for determining appeals for England. Cooper said: Over the past four years the number of appeals received has increased by over 38%, putting pressure on timeliness. However, it is welcome that most other targets were met.'

Bob Jones has been elected as the new chair of the Association of Police Authorities. Jones takes over from Ruth Henig, who had chaired the association since 1997. Jones, a member of the West Midlands Police Authority, has been deputy chair of the APA since 2004. He also serves as a city councillor in Wolverhampton. 'I believe that police authorities are the key to joining up the delivery of responsive policing in our neighbourhoods with the provision of effective, resilient policing capable of meeting the threats of cross-border and serious crime,' he said.

The Department of Health is seeking views on proposed legislative changes that will tighten up hygiene standards in hospitals. Ministers are proposing a new duty on NHS bodies to follow a cleanliness code. A consultation period runs until September 23. But plans to apply criminal sanctions to managers who fail to enforce the code have been dropped in favour of strengthening regulatory powers. …

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