Bonfire of the quangos “rushed and poorly handled” says Tory MP

A cross-party commons committee has argued that the government's process of scrapping quangos has been "botched", reports Chris Tarquini.

A cross-party commons committee has argued that the government’s process of scrapping quangos (quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations) was “poorly managed”.  The public administration select committee has released a report, “Shrinking the Quango State“, which argues that the tests used to judge quangos were “hopelessly unclear”.

The fact that the committee chairman Bernard Jenkin is a Conservative MP may concern the government, as Mr Jenkin described the process as “rushed and poorly handled”, adding:

“This was a fantastic opportunity to help build the Big Society and save money at the same time, but it has  been botched”

The report follows government plans announced in October to scrap 192 quangos, including the UK film council and the Expert Panel on Air Quality Standards, whilst 118 of them are to be merged.

Mr Jenkin stands by his comments, arguing that while “there is a cut in public spending taking place in quangos”, he criticised the process in which it has been done, in an interview on the BBC.

Watch it:

He said:

“The government raised expectations. David Cameron himself said getting rid of quangos would save billions of pounds before the election and when it came to the crunch the government set up a series of tests to see which bodies should continue or what should happen to each body and none of those tests were about value for money.

“None of them were about effectiveness. There was a test about whether it should exist at all and whether it should be independently establishing facts or whether it should be impartial and so on. These tests were rather vague and we found that they have been applied rather inconsitantly across government departments.

“Different government departments applied them in different ways, there was a lack of public consultation, a lot of public bodies weren’t consulted at all. When the government says a lot of bodies have been abolished, actually the functions have been kept but transferred into the government department.”

Respected think-tank The Institute for Government, which described the committee’s report as “very thorough”. In response to Mr Jenkin’s damaging remarks, an aide for Francis Maude, the cabinet minister responsible for scrapping the large number of quangos, dismissed the criticism, arguing:

“The committee has fundamentally misunderstood the process. The conclusions are absurd.”

Whilst the government may be trying to dismiss the criticisms of one of their flagship plans to reduce government waste, the fact that the questions are being asked from within their own party may raise concerns about the processes they are using in their ‘bonfire of the quangos‘.

12 Responses to “Bonfire of the quangos “rushed and poorly handled” says Tory MP”

  1. the credo

    Get me my truncheon. Now. //bit.ly/hcUWrX

  2. Watching You

    RT @leftfootfwd: Bonfire of the quangos "rushed and poorly handled" says Tory MP: //bit.ly/h0JhWH

  3. Graham Galloway

    RT @leftfootfwd: Bonfire of the quangos "rushed and poorly handled" says Tory MP: //bit.ly/h0JhWH

  4. Matt Hayes

    RT @leftfootfwd: Bonfire of the quangos "rushed and poorly handled" says Tory MP: //bit.ly/h0JhWH

  5. LUCKYMIKE

    Why are you so behind the news, Guido is running that crook CHAYTOR EX LABOUR MP. Come on show you are a fair minded blogg and not just a Labour mouthpiece

  6. Éoin Clarke

    Good article…

    The coalition performed a jedi mind trick and deserve credit for doing so. How so? Well if you make enough bad decisions at once, people are so overwhelmed with incredulity it becomes impossible to decide where to start picking holes. If it were not so depressing, the metaphor “like a kid in a candy shop” would be an appropriate term.

    Take the General Teaching Council for example. This body used to ensure the suitability of teachers, overseas their career development and self regulate their standards. Is there a logical reason why we should ever end this body?

  7. Dave

    Just more evidence that we have a CONDEM Collision government and not a CONDEM Coaltion government.

  8. AltGovUK

    RT @leftfootfwd: Bonfire of the quangos "rushed and poorly handled" says Tory MP: //bit.ly/h0JhWH

  9. L DTUC

    RT @leftfootfwd: Bonfire of the quangos "rushed and poorly handled" says Tory MP: //bit.ly/h0JhWH

  10. 13eastie

    LFF has nothing to say about Chaytor being condemned to prison for stealing from the tax-payer?

    Surely the CPS produced enough good stuff in court for some “EVIDENCE-based political blogging”?

  11. matthew fox

    @ Luckymike

    Guido Fawkes, do you mean convicted drunk driver Paul Staines, the guy who created the 2nd No 10 server and had to retract the story about Nick Robinson being his source.

    It is a sad day when anyone swings by guido fawkes, his particular vile form of political news-entertainment.

    When it comes to crooks, Jeffery Archer still sets the bar, a man who lied under oath, got Lloyd Turner, the editor of the Daily Star, fired, and ruined the life of Monica Coghlan.

  12. blogs of the world

    A cross-party commons committee has argued that the government's process of scrapping quan… //reduce.li/a3peuh #handled

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