The Government has bowed to local authority PROs' demands over proposed changes to the industry's code of conduct.
In a statement to Parliament on 15 February, Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions minister for regeneration Beverly Hughes pledged the draft would now be subject to continued review. Developments within new media and changes to council structures would also be taken into account.
Hughes said: 'We intend in the future to review further the code, having regard to councils' experiences of operating their new constitutions over a reasonable period.'
The Society of County and Unitary Public Relations Officers and the Local Government Information Unit, originally lobbied the Commons/Lords select committee to update the draft Local Government Bill in March 2000.
However, when the proposed changes were announced last month, SCUPRO and LGIU both claimed they did not go far enough (PRWeek, 26 January).
They claimed councils were still adapting to the new structures introduced by the Local Government Act 2000.
LGIU head of communications James Odling-Smee said: 'The initial draft document did not address the issue of a review and did not take on board a lot of the learning we've had to do. This is very much a victory for local government.'