Science advice to MPs spared budget cut

It’s good news for the future of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST).  It was feared at the beginning of the month, as part of a savings programme being introduced across the House of Commons, that the office was facing a 17% cut in its budget by 2014/15.

In response to the news of a potential budget cuts CaSE organised a letter, signed by leading figures from the science and engineering policy community, warning that potential budget cuts to POST threaten the quality of scientific advice in Westminster.

However this morning Adam Afriyie MP, Chair of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology, has announced on his website that the POST budget will be secure until April 2015.  This decision comes after a parliamentary debate on the House of Commons Administration and Savings Programme at which Mr Afriyie outlined the impact these disproportionate cuts would have to POST.

Commenting on the news, Mr Afriyie said:

“Supporting parliamentarians’ work through POST is absolutely critical to improving understanding of science and technology issues in Parliament.  POST has a vital role to play in improving the quality of public policy in the UK by supporting an evidence-based approach to policy-making.”

Commenting on the news, CaSE Assistant Director Beck Smith said:

“POST’s work is vital in arming Parliamentarians with sound scientific evidence.  At a time when many Government departments are making disproportionate cuts to their R&D budgets, the work of POST is more important than ever.  It’s reassuring to see the House of Commons Commission recognise this.”

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