The Local Government Association have added up how many pages of instructions and guidance have been imposed on Town Halls in the last decade and come up with an estimate of 74,000 pages. That's 40 pages each day Parliament has sat since 2000. The LGA reckons that compliance puts £2.5 billion a year on our Council Tax bills.
There were 1,300 pages sent out last year on how to pay Housing Benefit. John Prescott sent out 2,000 pages about house building targets.
Even after the election there has been another 1,355 pages – due to 67 laws coming into effect.
I wonder how many pages will be saved as a result of the announcement on Wednesday morning, which I was proud to witness, when Eric Pickles stood up in the Council Chamber of Hammersmith Town Hall and announced the abolition of Local Area Agreements, which represented thousands of targets. A vast amount of work requiring the employmment of thousands of staff completely pointlessly. All removed in a moment and I had a front row seat on the day of liberation. Let the bells ring out.
LGA Chairman Baroness Eaton says instructions on how councils carry out their legal duties should be scrapped.