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July 28, 2011

Private sector to handle Audit Commission work

UK Communities Secretary Eric Pickles has confirmed all of the public audit work currently carried out by the Audit Commission (AC) will be outsourced to the private sector.

This decision follows last year’s announcement the AC will be scraped in order to save taxpayer money.

Pickles said the government has, “set in train measures to save council taxpayers money by radically scaling back on the centrally imposed, bureaucratic and costly audit and inspections previously undertaken by the Audit Commission”.

“This government is determined to refocus local audit on helping local people hold councils to account. We believe that the next step is to outsource the audit practice next year as a way to secure best value for money,” he said.

The Audit Commission, which employs 2,000 people, was set up in 1983. Its primary objective was to improve economy, efficiency and effectiveness in local government, housing and the health service.

The decision to move all the work to the private sector trumps other ideas the government put forward including transferring AC functions to the voluntary or not-for-profit sectors.


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