§ Mr. Barry Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will give(a) the consultants appointed by his Department to evaluate responses to the consultation paper on the structure of local government in Wales, (b) the fee agreed in each case, (c) the criteria used in selecting the consultants and (d) state whether consultants were appointed for the process of drawing up the consultation paper.
§ Mr. David Hunt
The consultation paper on the structure of local government was produced by my Department; consultants were not engaged. Responses to the paper are being evaluated by my Department in consultation with the Council of Welsh Districts and the Assembly of Welsh Counties and in due course will be the subject of discussion by the Welsh Consultative Council on Local Government. Touche Ross has been appointed following open competition to provide technical advice to enable officials to make an assessment of the financial implications of any reorganisation. The fee agreed is subject to commercial confidentiality.