A FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (FOI) request to the East Riding Council has failed to discover their costs of publishing statutory notices in local newspapers and other publications.
The FOI was submitted by HU12 Online as part of our support for a study by the Local Government Information Unit on reforming the current requirements on councils to publish public notices in local newspapers.
In the FOI, submitted via They Work For You, we asked the council how much it cost to publish their statutory notices. However, the council does not record such expenditure under a single budget heading, but under many different headings making it difficult to track as a specific type of expenditure. Therefore the council was unable to provide the costs of publishing statutory notices.
What will become available is an estimate on the costs of producing neighbourhood notification letters. This will be included in a report to be considered by the council’s decision-making Cabinet. The report, More Effective Publicity for Planning Applications, is expected to be considered by the Cabinet on Tuesday 16th October 2012.
Council’s are currently legally obliged to publish notices in local newspapers and in some other publications. The LGiU is calling for changes which would free up councils to decide where best to place public notices, whether in print or online. It is argued that this could be more cost-effective, and notices targeted more effectively at the communities and localities that need to know about them.
HU12 Online will bring you details of the report, and of the discussion at the council Cabinet, in October 2012.