Survey reveals extent of Aids legal work

The Law Society has refused to authorise a further £95,000 investment in the High Street Starter Kit (HSSK), saying its council must be given the chance to decide on the future of the project first.

The council was to discuss the future of the HSSK – one of Law Society president Tony Girling's flagship projects – at a meeting in January, but the debate was postponed until March at the request of practice development committee chair Robin ap Cynan.

Ap Cynan then requested an interim payment of £95,000 for further research on the project.

But a finance sub-committee set up to consider the matter refused the request last week. It said the practice development committee should first present all the available options, including discontinuing the project, and a basic costing to council members in March.

Following the decision, ap Cynan said: “There is no budget at present for further development of the High Street Starter Kit.

“I am concerned that the result of yesterday's decision will be that the information we are able to be put before council in March will not be as complete and not as fully costed as I would have liked as there is no more money for further research.”

One option deputy treasurer Robert Sayer wants to be considered is simplification of the society's accounting rules. At the moment regulations mean it cannot buy software from big companies.

He said: “We have to take a radical look and say 'why not simplify rules so they fit in with rest of the world'.”