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Mr. Watts: Regular meetings are held between OPRAF and British Rail to discuss a wide range of issues. The decision to withdraw Motorail services and the London--Fort William sleeper service from May was taken by BR on commercial grounds.
Mr. McLeish: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport under what statutory powers the Director of Franchising and OPRAF were acting when the decision was taken to exclude the Fort William sleeper and Motorail services from the passenger service requirement for ScotRail. 
Mr. Watts: In indicating that he would not include the Fort William sleeper service and Motorail services in the draft passenger service requirement for ScotRail, the Franchising Director was acting within the bounds of the statutory objectives, instructions and guidance issued by my right hon. Friend the Member for Norfolk, South (Mr. MacGregor) on 22 March 1994 in accordance with the provisions of section 5 of the Railways Act 1993.
Mr. Charles Kennedy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what assessment he has made of the additional costs associated with maintenance of the (a) Fort William to London sleeper service, (b) Carlisle to London sleeper service and (c) Scotland to London motorail services, for the purpose of an eight week consultation period commencing in May, indicating the financial assumptions involved; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what estimate he has made of the costs associated with the closure of the (a) Fort William to London sleeper service, (b) Carlisle to London sleeper service and (c) Scotland to London motorail services; and if he will make a statement;  (3) what estimate he has made of the start up costs associated with re-opening, after May, the (a) Fort William to London sleeper service, (b) Carlisle to London sleeper service and (c) Scotland to London Motorail services; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Watts: My right hon. Friend has not made any such assessments on estimates. The decision to withdraw Motorail services and the sleeper service between London and Carlisle and London and Fort William from 28 May was a commercial decision by British Rail. It has undertaken to retain the assets needed to run these services so that they can be restored if the Franchising Director decides to include them in the passenger service requirement for the ScotRail franchise.
Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will ensure that the inquiry into the Birmingham northern relief road is based on a re-assessment of traffic models and growth forecasts; 
(2) what account he has taken of the effects of congestion of the traffic model assumption in respect of the Birmingham northern relief road which assumes that for roads which are full traffic will grow at a reduced rate; 
(3) on what basis traffic modellers have ignored heavy goods vehicles in respect of the Birmingham northern relief road; and if he will make a statement; 
(4) what assessment he has made of the impact of an (a) untolled and (b) tolled west orbital road in respect of
Column 318the Birmingham northern relief road. 
Letter from Laurie Haynes to Ms Joan Walley, dated 23 March 1995:
You asked the Secretary of State for information about the traffic modelling used for the Birmingham Northern Relief Road. We are satisfied that the traffic model uses a robust methodology and has taken account of significant changes, such as the SACTRA report, which have arisen since the draft Orders were published. The ongoing public inquiry into the proposals has received much information on traffic flows and techniques. It will be for the Inspector to form his own judgement on that evidence.
The Original (February 1994) BNRR traffic forecasts assumed a tolled Western Orbital Route. The latest (November 1994) forecasts assume a WOR that will be free to motorists. The traffic impacts of these differing assumptions are contained in evidence placed before the inquiry.
HGVs are not ignored in the traffic model. Tests established the most appropriate methodology for the evaluation of the BNRR proposals; this ensures the most realistic estimate of HGV routing. Details of the methodology used have been presented to the inquiry. The traffic model takes account of the capacity of the roads in the area. Reduced growth rates have been assumed for all journeys with one or both ends in the conurbation, in line with assumptions made by local highway authorities in the conurbation.
Mr. Atkins: There are no plans to phase out HFCs, nor to set targets for phaseout. HFCs have been developed as alternatives to some ozone- depleting substances and are an important part of the solution to the problem of depletion of the ozone layer. However, HFCs are also greenhouse gases and the Government are discussing with industry the scope for voluntary agreements to limit HFC emissions and to ensure that HFCs are not used where emissions are unavoidable if safe, practical and more environmental acceptable alternatives are available.
Mr. Robert B. Jones: On 21 March my right hon. Friend announced the appointment of Sir David Cooksey to the chairmanship of the Local Government Commission, Official Report , column 145 . I believe Sir David has all the qualities required of the chairman, and I note that his appointment was immediately welcomed by the hon. Member for Holborn and St. Pancras (Mr. Dobson).
Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) if he will list the English counties, following the current reorganisation of local government, that will have no administrative function but will have a
Column 319lord lieutenant and sheriff; 
(2) if he will list the English counties, following the current reorganisation of local government, which are to be extended beyond their administrative boundaries for ceremonial purposes and where lords lieutenant and sheriffs will have jurisdiction over the wider area; 
(3) if he will list the English counties, following the current reorganisation of local government, that will have no functions. 
Mr. Robert B. Jones: Decisions have not yet been taken in all cases. However, I expect that the only county areas without any county councils but with their own lords lieutenant will be Berkshire and East Yorkshire. Most areas whose local authority is granted unitary powers will be deemed to be part of a neighbouring county area for ceremonial purposes.
In those areas for which structure orders have been made, North West Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset will be deemed to be part of Somerset; South Gloucestershire will be deemed to be part of Gloucestershire; North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire will be deemed to be part of Lincolnshire; York will be deemed to be part of North Yorkshire; and Hull will be deemed to be part of East Yorkshire. We are still considering the ceremonial arrangements for Cleveland.
Tyne and Wear
Hereford and Worcester
Isle of Wight
Mr. McGrady: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what discussions have taken place with his European ministerial counterparts concerning the need to reduce levels of air pollution. 
Mr. Atkins: I maintain regular contacts with my European ministerial counterparts on all aspects of environmental protection, including air pollution. Most recently, I met my European Community counterparts in Brussels on 9 March at the meeting of the Environment Council. We had a fruitful discussion on a number of issues related to air pollution, including the proposed directive on integrated pollution prevention and control and the proposed framework directive on ambient air quality assessment and management.
Mr. Atkins: The Government announced their strategic policies for managing air quality in the document "Air Quality: Meeting the Challenge", published on 19 January. Copies are available in the House Libraries. Those policies are aimed at delivering sustainable improvements in air quality throughout the UK. Proposals include a framework of national air quality standards, a new system of local air quality assessment and management and an action plan for transport.
Mr. Alan W. Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the level of (a) grant in aid, (b) internal income generated and (c) total budget for the National Rivers Authority for each year since its establishment. 
£ million |(a) |(b) |(c) |Income from |charges and |Total |Grant-in-aid |levies |expenditure<1> --------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1989-90 |74.3 |267.9 |<2>339.8 1990-91 |99.5 |274.9 |<2>368.7 1991-92 |83.9 |300.4 |<2>422.9 1992-93 |74.7 |335.9 |<2>428.6 1993-94 |61.2 |343.1 |<3>466.5 1994-95 |67.9 |295.6 |<3>455.4 Note: <1> Total expenditure does not equal the sum of grant in aid and income from charges and levies because of end year balances and flood defence capital grant. <2> Actual <3> Budget Sources: (a) DoE departmental reports (b) and (c) NRA corporate plan 1994-95
Mr. Alan W. Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the total number of people working (a) full time and (b) part time for the National Rivers Authority in each year since it was established. 
Mr. Atkins: The NRA does not separately record numbers of part-time staff. The data show permanent staff, including part-time staff, and temporary staff, including those working for limited periods and those on fixed term contracts:
|Permanent staff|Temporary staff ---------------------------------------------------------------- 31 March 1990 |6,382 |153 31 March 1991 |6,886 |476 31 March 1992 |7,568 |581 31 March 1993 |7,483 |758 31 March 1994 |7,072 |637
Mr. Alan W. Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list each of the major establishments which are part of the National Rivers Authority, giving number of employees and budget for (a) 1993 94, (b) 1994 95 and (c) 1995 96 in 1994 prices. 
Number of employees |(a)1993-94|(b)1994-95|(c)1995-96 Function |number |number |number --------------------------------------------------------- Water Quality |1,298 |1,279 |1,242 Water Resources |788 |802 |791 Flood Defence |3,094 |2,970 |2,948 Fisheries |526 |522 |511 Conservation |87 |92 |91 Navigation |85 |84 |84 Recreation |29 |31 |30 Support Services |1,451 |1,345 |1,326 National Centres |351 |397 |397 Total |7,709 |7,522 |7,420 Source: NRA.
The National Rivers Authority's budget for 1993 94, 1994 95 and 1995 96 at 1994 95 prices is:
Budget in 1994-95 prices |(a) |(b) |(c) |1993-94 |1994-95 |1995-96 Function |£ million|£ million|£ million -------------------------------------------------------- Water Quality |89.7 |88.1 |83.5 Water Resources |80.8 |75.4 |72.1 Flood Defence |255.4 |242.0 |237.7 Fisheries |24.5 |21.6 |21.1 Conservation |3.5 |3.5 |3.3 Navigation |7.5 |6.0 |5.8 Recreation |2.3 |2.1 |1.8 Other |12.2 |16.7 |12.2 Total |475.9 |455.4 |437.5 Source: NRA corporate plan 1994-95.
Ms Armstrong: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list for each regional water company (a) the net equity proceeds to Government as a result of privatisation, (b) the market value at the end of the first day of trading and (c) the current market value. 
Mr. Atkins: Information on the proceeds resulting from privatisation, the market capitalisation at flotation and movement in share values at the end of the first day's trading in shares in the 10 water holding companies in England and Wales, is contained in the National Audit Office report "Department of the Environment: Sale of the Water Authorities in England and Wales", a copy of which is in the Library. Current market values vary according to fluctuations in the share price of the companies. This information is not held by my Department.
Mr. David Shaw: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will bring forward legislation to require local authorities to disclose in their annual accounts (a) the number of staff employed, (b) their total remuneration, (c) the number of staff in receipt of remuneration in excess of £10,000 per annum in salary bands of £5, 000 and (d) the remuneration of the highest paid chief officer in a format similar to that used in company accounts. 
Mr. Robert B. Jones: There is a strong case for local authorities to publish details of the pay of their senior staff in broadly the same way as companies are required to publish details of the pay of their senior employees. However, I am keen to keep the new obligations on local authorities under control.
My Department is considering what information it would be appropriate for local authorities to publish and the best way for the local authorities to be encouraged to make that information public. Of course, no new stipulations would be introduced without consultation with the local authority associations.
Column 323authority housing stock in all district authorities in East and West Sussex. 
East and West Sussex |(b)<1> Net revenue |(b)<2> Total capital |expenditure |expenditure |(a) Total staff as |1993-94 outturn |1993-94 |(c)<3> Dwelling |at |stock |March 1994 |£000 |£000 |as at 1 April 1994 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brighton |1,845 |23,378 |14,945 |10,507 Eastbourne |666 |10,970 |7,834 |4,771 Hastings |787 |10,440 |5,648 |4,671 Hove |555 |11,357 |4,763 |3,505 Lewes |429 |8,563 |3,748 |3,923 Rother |375 |8,579 |4,738 |3,355 Wealden |520 |13,013 |6,179 |3,849 Adur |472 |6,048 |3,431 |3,316 Arun |586 |13,634 |8,234 |4,202 Chichester |n/a |13,516 |9,087 |6,436 Crawley |816 |10,448 |5,602 |10,389 Horsham |558 |9,505 |13,713 |5,435 Mid Sussex |n/a |9,333 |2,875 |0 Worthing |645 |9,567 |3,609 |2,705 Notes: <1><2>Revenue expenditure and capital expenditure cannot be added together to give a "total" expenditure figure at an individual authority level. This is because some of the capital expenditure is funded from revenue. <1>Net revenue expenditure is expenditure on recurring items including the running of services and capital financing. It excludes spending funded by special and specific grants and income from licence fees, etcetera. This is the expenditure figure to compare to standard spending assessment. <2>This is gross capital expenditure on all services, including housing, and includes expenditure reimbursed by grants and expenditure financed from revenue. <3>Includes dwellings owned by the named local authority but which are situated outside of this local authority's area.
Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement on his proposals for local authority participation in companies and for amending the capital finance regulations. 
Mr. Curry: The Local Authorities (Companies) Order 1995 and the Local Authorities (Capital Finance and Approved Investments) (Amendment) Regulations 1995 have today been laid before Parliament. These implement the package of proposals to encourage closer partnership between local authorities and the private sector, announced by my right hon. Friend on 31 October 1994.
The Local Authorities (Companies) Order 1995 establishes a regime for local authority participation in companies, under which those companies, including companies limited by guarantee, which are led by the private sector will be subject to few controls other than those applicable generally under the Companies Acts. We are providing in the regime transitional provisions for local authority companies established before 1 April 1995, and we are also allowing certain exemptions.
The Local Authorities (Capital Finance and Approved Investments) (Amendment) Regulations 1995 make a number of changes to the local authority capital finance rules, with the intention of promoting the use of private finance.
The order and regulations laid take account of extensive consultation conducted by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Wales with the local authority associations, individual local authorities, and other interested parties. The main changes made following this will:
Column 324free authorities of all subsequent capital finance impact from a company's operations provided it leaves the public sector, permanently, by 31 March 1996.
increase to 75 per cent. the usable proportion of receipts of sale of local authority shareholdings in airport companies arising before 1 April 1997, and in bus companies arising before 31 March 1996. This was announced by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Transport on 3 March, Official Report, column 732 . allow authorities holding leases of non-housing property taken out before 1988 to extend them for up to 10 years without capital costs.
allow authorities to transfer assets to companies in return for a mixed consideration of cash and shares, without needing to set resources aside in relation to the shares.
The regulations also introduce other beneficial changes which reflect consultations with and representations from local authorities. These will:
allow authorities to renew, for up to two years without capital cost, leases on privately owned homes expiring after 20 December 1994. This will enable authorities to continue present arrangements by renewing short-term leases on good quality homes in the private rented sector, rather than using bed-and-breakfast hotels to provide temporary accommodation. The use of bed and breakfast accommodation has fallen by 43 per cent. over two years.
allow costs of computer software to be capitalised.
In addition, there are many clarificatory and drafting changes. I will also be laying before Parliament later in the year further regulations which will have the effect of increasing to 90 per cent. the usable proportion of local authorities' receipts from sales of car parks and retail property arising between 1 September 1995 and 31 August 1996.
Thus local authorities and prospective private sector partners can now look forward to a total of four targeted