Advertising Campaign? (Supplementary) [5]

Session date: 
April 4, 2001
Question By: 
Angie Bray
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

When Wandsworth decided to do its own survey on the same subject, around traffic, transport and the congestion charge, they spent £17,000 and got 10,500 written responses. That shows what can be done rather more cheaply - about £1.60 per response, I think it works out. Isn't it legally the fact that it is only your written responses that will count towards your legally required consultation? You say you have just over 7,000 of those, which makes the cost about £180 per response. Doesn't that put a slightly different complexion on things?

Supplementary To: 

Answer

Answer for Advertising Campaign? (Supplementary) [5]

Answer for Advertising Campaign? (Supplementary) [5]

Answered By: 
The Mayor

: I need to be advised by a lawyer, but I would assume that it will not simply be the written responses. We are undertaking a major opinion poll. Very often this Assembly asks me, how do we reach people who do not normally take part? There is no better way than a properly researched and conducted opinion pool by an independent and respected firm of pollsters - it is now drawing to its close - so that we get that wider basis.

Very often, the people who write in are partisan one way or the other, particularly if, in Wandsworth, you had a leaflet which basically suggested that, if the congestion charge went ahead, it would be the end of life on planet Earth; which may have skewed the figures somewhat - and which I think is actually subject to a legal challenge, Sam Heath was telling me. It has been referred to the District Auditor or something like that. I must say, I do deplore that sort of use of public funds for political campaigning. [Laughter.]