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Saturday 29th December 2012 | 18:20
In response to the publication of the quango report from the Cabinet Office today, Jill Rutter, Programme Director for the Institute for Government said:
"This publication is great improvement on the information Cabinet Office has provided before on quangos - it's much more useful and useable than previous lists and it's good to see figures on appointments as well. But this only focuses on NDPBs and misses out other categories eg non-ministerial departments and public corporations which perform similar roles; this underlines the need for a more coherent and comprehensive approach to arm's length bodies based on more useful classifications, as we recommended in our report 'Read Before Burning'. It is good that today's report acknowledges the upfront costs of change as well as savings counted so far. It will be vital government ensures follow through to make sure existing savings are maintained and future savings are realised. Getting rid of defunct bodies, which the report draws attention to, is a useful way of 'decluttering' - but this does not have significant implications for spending so the government needs to look beyond a simple numbers game.
"It's good to see also that where the decision is that a NDPB should be maintained, the government is also looking at its relationship with the sponsoring department (as we recommended in our report 'It takes Two')- other forms of quango should also be subject to regular review. It is vital departments can work collaboratively with quangos of all types; at time of big reductions in civil service and public sector manpower, productive relationships can maximise value for the taxpayer."