Magazine article Public Finance

In Brief

Magazine article Public Finance

In Brief

Article excerpt

* Prime Minister Tony Blair has admitted that the Child Support Agency is 'not properly suited'to its job. Blair told MPs on November 16 that it was 'extremely' difficult to make the CSA a cost-effective body because of its various investigating, adjudicating and enforcement functions.

* Home Office minister Baroness Scotland has said identity cards could save £310m0 -£575m in fraud prevention; £30m0 -£40m in immigration control; and £45m-£85m in reducing the cost of crime. During the ID Card Bill's committee stage in the Lords, she said the cost to the Home Office would be £584m a year.

* The National Childbirth Trust has warned that a shortage of midwives and lack of funds is threatening the network of local birth centres. It called on the government to safeguard their future after a series of closures.

* The net operating costs for Whitehall's Defence Export Service Organisation, which helps British arms manufacturers sell overseas, was £17m last year. …

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