Members of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee have recommended expanding the BBC's Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS) and called for a review of the statutory notices rules amid a warning that local news offerings will continue to decline without Government support.
In a report, Sustainability of local journalism, MPs said statutory notices in local newspapers remain an important means of keeping the public informed and a vital revenue stream for many local news publishers. But the criteria used by some councils to determine where notices are published appear to be
It noted that with the increased use of the internet and digital platforms to access information, there have been various proposals over recent years to reform the statutory notice system, so local authorities are no longer required to place notices in newspapers.
It went on to recommend that the Government review existing rules and practices for placing statutory notices in local newspapers, and whether local councils need guidance on how to measure the reach and audience levels of news publications in a digital age.