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Red Tape Cut For 1,000 Businesses As Primary Authority Rollout Continues

Michael Fallon pledges to bring the benefits of Primary Authority to more hard-pressed businesses, trade associations and local authorities

Published on 28 February 2014

Discover the World Of Judaica

by The Rt Hon Michael Fallon MP


London, England

Department for Innovation & Skills
Department for Innovation & Skills

Business Minister Michael Fallon today (27 February 2014) pledged to bring the benefits of Primary Authority to more hard-pressed businesses, trade associations and local authorities, announcing that 1,000 enterprises now need to spend less time dealing with regulation thanks to the scheme.

Through Primary Authority, local authorities are delivering improved and more consistent regulatory advice and enforcement in areas including trading standards and environmental health.

This reduces unnecessary bureaucracy that would otherwise be a barrier to growth. Primary Authority particularly benefits small firms like independent butchers, grocers, removals firms, builders’ merchants and independent retailers that can least afford to deal with complex or inconsistent regulation.

There are now 3,367 Primary Authority partnerships with 115 local authorities participating in the scheme, including Cornwall, Cambridgeshire, Leeds and Westminster Councils.

Business Minister Michael Fallon said:

"The government is waging war on red tape, and Primary Authority is successfully placing the needs of business at the heart of local regulation. We will continue to extend the scheme, enabling many more small enterprises to avoid unnecessary inspections and unwanted paperwork."

The Primary Authority scheme enables businesses to enter into a partnership agreement with a single local authority, either directly or through trade associations, franchises or other eligible business groups. The local authority (the primary authority) then provides robust and reliable advice for other councils to take into account when carrying out inspections or dealing with non-compliance.

From October 2013, members of franchises and trade associations have been able to form Primary Authority partnerships with local authorities. Through these partnerships, their members receive assured regulatory advice and guidance from 1 place - and all local authorities must ensure their enforcement activities are consistent with this advice. The government, through its Better Regulation Delivery Office (BRDO), is encouraging more trade associations and business groups to participate in the scheme.

Brian Young, Director General, British Frozen Food Federation said:

"The British Frozen Food Federation have been pleased to have worked with BRDO in piloting the extension of Primary Authority to groups of businesses adopting a shared approach to compliance and to be 1 of the first Trade Associations to enter the scheme. Doing the right thing and achieving legal compliance is very important to our members and we believe that our partnerships with Wakefield Metropolitan Borough Council on Food Hygiene and Health and Safety and Cambridgeshire County Council on Food Standards and labelling will prove of considerable assistance to our members. We are already seeing a high level of interest from members for the planned further extension into Fire Safety in April 2014."

David Oliver, Head of Regulation, National Federation of Property Professionals said:

"The National Federation of Property Professionals are pleased to have entered a Primary Authority partnership with Warwickshire County Council on behalf of our members. Many of our members are small businesses for whom achieving clarity and consistency of interpretation on regulatory requirements is very important. The less time they have to spend on the detail of regulation the more time they can spend on their customers to grow their businesses."

Diana Axby, The Specialist Cheesemakers Association said:

"We are very enthusiastic about our new Primary Authority partnership with Cornwall Council which will help to deliver improved understanding and consistency of approach by regulators to our members. Time is always at a premium in a small business – if our members can be given more certainty as to what they need to do in respect of regulatory issues this will give them confidence that they are doing the right thing, allowing them to devote more time to other aspects of their businesses."



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Posted 2014-02-28 08:55:00