Public Sector: MPs call for more transparency, less hype

A consultation over councils advertising traffic orders in the local media has led MPs to call on local authorities to spend more money on improving transparency, rather than investing in websites or 'newer and better local authority propaganda'.

As part of the consultation on traffic orders advertising, Stevenage Conservative MP Stephen McPartland told a debate in Westminster Hall on local media that 'we are not in the business of subsidising local newspapers'.

But he added: 'We should not be in the business of encouraging local authorities to compete against news-papers by taking advertising revenue away from those newspapers and putting things on their own websites, because very little of those savings will go to frontline services.

'Local authorities will probably spend the money on developing a newer and better local authority website or newer and better local authority propaganda.

'The local community does not want that. It wants access to transparent information.'

The comments came as the Department for Communities and Local Government confirmed that it had no plans to remove the requirement for planning applications to be advertised in local news-papers.

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