HC Deb 21 March 2003 vol 401 c985W
Mr. Laws

To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department how much was spent on the House of Lords Reform Unit in each year from 2000–01 to 2003–04 (planned); and if she will make a statement. [99830]

Yvette Cooper

Until October 2001, officials dealing with House of Lords reform were an integral part of the Constitution Secretariat at the Cabinet Office and were also engaged in other duties within the Secretariat. On transfer of the functions to the Lord Chancellor's Department, provision of £361,000 was also transferred. This included provision for the purchase of legal advice to the Unit. The lawyers' part of the transferred resources has now been allocated to that part of the Department along with the posts in question. The estimated outturn for the House of Lords Reform unit for 2002–3 is £181,000. However, both the officials in the Unit and the legal advisers have been principally engaged on other duties within the Lord Chancellor's Department. The spending on the House of Lords Reform Unit in 2003–04 will depend on the work needed in response to the decisions made by the Committee on House of Lords Reform. Provision has been made for a budget of up to £273,000.