Cull of quangos scaled back after lobbying

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Indy Politics

Plans for a "bonfire of quangos" will today be scaled back by the Government after an intensive lobbying campaign.

Dozens of bodies are expected to win at least a temporary reprieve when the Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude announces which quangos are to be scrapped this morning.

It is understood that less than 100 of the 742 quangos will be abolished outright. These will include some high-profile targets such as the Film Council and the Audit Commission, but most will be relatively unknown and uncontroversial.

The majority of the larger quangos earmarked for closure will be given a stay of execution. These are likely to include bodies such as the tourism quango Visit Britain, the Equalities and Human Rights Commission and the Environment Agency.

Others, such as the Health Protection Agency, which is responsible for public health, and the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, which regulates IVF treatments, will be abolished in name, but all their functions and staff will be transferred to other parts of government.