Fault found in agency goals by committee

Regional development agency (RDA) targets focus too much on short-term contributions to Whitehall objectives and too little on long-term regional impact, a select committee warned this week.

The Commons public accounts committee found that ministerial delays in approving RDA projects damage relationships with regional stakeholders.

It added that RDAs do not have enough influence over spending on skills and transport.

The ODPM should streamline funding to avoid the burden of repeated applications and satisfying different monitoring regimes, its report recommends. Chair of the RDA chairs Juliet Williams said the report clears the way for a culture of greater trust and flexibility between central government and RDAs.

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