Headlines: October 23rd, 2002

A new website is offering members of the public the chance to compare the performance of their local councils with that of other authorities.The site, launched by the Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, will provide open access to all the UK’s local government Best Performance Indicators. That means visitors to the site will be able to check how well their local council is doing in almost a hundred aspects of services. The information available ranges from amounts of council tax being collected to how much waste is being recycled in each council area.

As well as opening information to the general public the site is designed as a research tool for local government officers, those working in other public services, private companies and academics. An interactive area will allow them to conduct detailed analysis and charting of Best Value Performance Indicator data.

The site has been developed by the research consultants, ORC International, and has been designed in a way which reflects the outcome of consultations with local government officials and members of the public.

Rachel Lopata, ORC’s Research Director, believes it is an innovative approach to giving people better and more flexible access to information presented in a way that is easy to understand. ” This website will be invaluable both for members of the public who want to know more about how their local council is performing and for authorities which may wish to compare their performance with other similar local authorities,” she said.