A high profile proposal for an independent infrastructure delivery body was dismissed by Treasury chief secretary Danny Alexander at the ICE conference.
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Sir John Armitt, the former Olympic Delivery Authority chairman, called for such a body in his Labour-commissioned review into long-term infrastructure planning published last month (NCE 12 September).
It calls for the establishment of a National Infrastructure Commission with statutory independence, to reduce the impact of changing governments on project delivery.
“I’ve read it [the review],” Alexander told the conference.
“In a democracy it is the right of political parties to take different views.
“And, you can’t wholly legislate against that or create systems that prevent those debates.
“I’m not totally convinced that an institution can solve the problem that, in a democracy, politicians have the right to disagree with one another. And in the end it is for the voters to choose.”
Armitt's call for infrastructure body rejected