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Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Tax Office consultation

Below is an extract from the HMRC Impact Assessment document on the closure of the Aberystwyth Tax Office. I have highlighted the relevant statements

4.5. External Engagement On 13 June 2008 Workforce Change wrote to 11 local authorities and two town councils in Wales about the proposals for the cluster and individual locations. A six week period for responses was provided. Comments were sought on subjects including local/regional economic factors, regeneration plans, wider employer activity and plans for new or improved transport links. Ten responses were received from Torfaen County Borough Council, Pontypool Community Council, Wrexham County Borough Council, Bridgend County Borough Council, Rhyl Town Council, Denbighshire County Council, Aberystwyth Town Council, Brecon Town Council, Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council and Pembrokeshire County Council. Responses received included comments on the impact of the proposed closures on the local economy in particular the impact of losing jobs. All concerns raised have been taken into account in making our recommendations to Ministers.
No response was received from Ceredigion County Council. After I made some enquiries Ceredigion County Council deny ever having received such a consultation. If no such request was made then the consultation process by HMRC is faulty and open to Judicial Review. If a request was made by HMRC then where was it sent? If it was sent to the wrong place then the consultation process is again faulty. Whatever the truth, the process cannot have been done properly.
Since Ceredigion was aware of the situation as this press release testifies, then I am concerned that they were looking the other way?

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