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ARB and RIBA continue to lock horns in reform row

The ongoing war of words between the ARB and the RIBA about whether the board should accept a regulatory shake-up has taken yet another twist.

Both ARB chairman Humphrey Lloyd and RIBA president Jack Pringle have fired off further salvos in the war over proposed changes drawn up by the RIBA Council ( see original article here).

Lloyd believes the planned regulatory changes - including the introduction of an ombudsman scheme for architects facing the board's professional conduct committee - are not in the public interest and would cause additional costs to registrants.

In an open letter to Pringle, Lloyd brands RIBA's 'case for change' as unjustifiable and points out that its retention fee 'is amongst the lowest of all the registration boards.'

Lloyd has also rejected claims that the board's approach does not fit in with Chancellor Gordon Brown's demands for 'a light-touch approach' towards regulation.

He said: 'By comparison to others with similar responsibilities to the ARB, this is probably the most lightweight and limited professional regulatory regime in the country.'

Pringle hit back - also in an open letter - stating that the institute has received overwhelming support for its proposals and that the 'ombudsman issue' would not cost registrants a penny.

He said: 'Our proposal- that the ARB should be subject to oversight by the existing Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration-corrects the anomaly whereby the ARB, unlike similar statutory bodies, is not subject to an affordable independent appeals route.'

See Humphrey Lloyd's letter

See Jack Pringle's letter

by Richard Waite

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