Previous Section Index Home Page

Statutory Benefits (Crewe and Nantwich)

Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many people in the constituency of Crewe and Nantwich have been awarded (a) attendance allowance, (b) back to work bonus, (c) business start up, (d) child benefit, (e) child maintenance bonus, (f) child support maintenance, (g) cold weather payment, (h) community care grants, (i) council tax benefit, (j) disability living allowance, (k) incapacity benefit, (l) income support, (m) industrial injury disablement benefit, (n) invalid care allowance, (o) maternity allowance, (p) severe disablement allowance, (q) social fund crisis loans, (r) stakeholder pensions, (s) statutory maternity pay, (t) statutory sick pay and (u) winter fuel payments since May 1997. [156256]

Mr. Bayley: The information is not available in the format requested as information on awards of benefit at constituency level is limited. Such information as is available is in the table.

Benefit PeriodNumber of awards
Attendance Allowance(14)1 June 1997-30 November 20001,600
Council Tax Benefit(15)April 1997--March 20008,100
Disability Living Allowance(14)1 June 1997-30 November 2000900
Incapacity Benefit(14)1 June 1998-30 November 20002,700
Winter Fuel Payment(16)1999-200018,700

(14) Figures are taken from 5 per cent. sample data.

(15) Information on awards of Council Tax Benefit is in respect of the Crewe and Nantwich borough council area. Figures are taken from the Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit Management Information System Quarterly Administration Returns. Data refers to benefit claims, which may be a single person or a couple.

(16) Figures are taken from the Matching Intelligence Data Analysis Service Winter Fuel Payment exercise and are rounded to the nearest hundred.

(17) The Winter Fuel Payment figures for 2000-2001 are provisional. They are taken from a payment run in November 2000 and will be an underestimate of the actual payments made.

Child Poverty (Shrewsbury and Atcham)

Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many children lived in poverty in Shrewsbury and Atcham on (a) 1 May 1997 and (b) the latest available date; and if he will make a statement. [154655]

Mr. Bayley: Poverty and social exclusion are complex multi-dimensional issues, affecting many aspects of people's lives--including income, health, housing, the quality of their environment and opportunities to learn. There is no single measure that can capture the complex problems that need to be overcome.

6 Apr 2001 : Column: 319W

However a number of these aspects have seen significant improvement in Shrewsbury and Atcham since 1997. Between February 1997 and August 2000 the number of children in families in receipt of out of work benefits has fallen from 3,100 to 2,300.

In Shropshire the proportion of 11-year-olds achieving level 4 or above at Key Stage 2 has risen in English from 62 per cent. in 1997 to 79 per cent. in 2000 and in mathematics from 61 per cent. in 1998 to 77 per cent. in 2000.

The annual report, "Opportunity for all", available in the Library, sets out and monitors the Government's strategy for tackling poverty and social exclusion.


Foot and Mouth

Ms Oona King: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what representations he has received from the RSPCA regarding animal welfare during mass slaughter programmes. [156967]

Mr. Morley: Mr. Chris Laurence, Chief Veterinary Officer of the RSPCA, wrote to my right hon. Friend the Minister on 22 March seeking assurances concerning the welfare of animals destined for slaughter as a result of FMD. Subsequently officials from the RSPCA have visited Great Orton on two occasions to witness the disposal of animals at risk from FMD. I understand that both were satisfied that the welfare of the animals prior to slaughter remained a primary concern of the teams involved in their disposal. I recently met the RSPCA and other welfare organisations to discuss slaughter and other welfare matters.

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action his Department is taking to relieve pressure from banks on farmers and businesses affected by the foot and mouth crisis. [155426]

Mr. Meacher: I have been asked to reply.

On behalf of the Rural Task Force I have met representatives of the clearing banks to discuss issues raised by the impact of foot and mouth disease on rural businesses.

The banks have made it clear to me that they understand the problems being faced by businesses from all sectors affected by the foot and mouth outbreak. Wherever possible they are keen to support their customers and any customers in difficulty or expecting problems to arise should contact their manager locally as soon as possible to discuss the options that may be available.

6 Apr 2001 : Column: 320W

The banks have also told me that they recognise that there will be longer term viability issues for some businesses arising as a result of the foot and mouth outbreak and that they will be pleased to work with the Government's Small Business Service to explore options including extension of the scope of the Small Firms Loans Guarantee Scheme to assist businesses in these circumstances.


South East England Development Agency

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what action he proposes to take following delays by SEEDA in its appraisal of SRB Round 6 projects; and if he will make a statement. [156686]

Ms Beverley Hughes: The Eastbourne Regeneration partnership "Reborn" was successful in its bid for Round 6 funding through the Government's Single Regeneration Scheme and was awarded £5 million by SEEDA in July 2000. The partnership, in common with all other partnerships, was required to show that each of the proposed projects could demonstrate sound financial viability and value for money. Thirteen projects were put forward by the partnership but were originally lacking in sufficient detail to meet the requirements of the SRB Scheme. Considerable time was spent by SEEDA with the partnership in addressing and resolving these issues. As a result of the additional time spent by SEEDA on these particular projects there have been delays elsewhere which SEEDA has also addressed.

I am satisfied that SEEDA has acted properly in ensuring that these projects meet the required standards specified in the SRB Scheme thereby ensuring the proper stewardship of public funds being invested in the region. I do not believe that there is any further action to take in this matter.


Mr. Beggs: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how many projects to solve sewage problems have received EU financial support through Regulation (EEC) No. 1655/2000 of the European Parliament during (a) Phase 1, (b) Phase 2 and (c) Phase 3. [156737]

Mr. Robert Ainsworth: Three UK sewage projects have received funding from the LIFE Programme since it began in 1992. Two were funded during the first phase of the LIFE Regulation, which ran between 1992 and 1995. The third was funded during the second phase between 1996 and 1999. The third phase runs from 2000 to 2004. As yet no awards have been made during this phase.

In 1992 the LIFE Programme contributed euro 711.554 to a Wetland Reedbed Treatment of Sewage put forward by the Fife Regional Council. The project ran from January 1993 to March 1997. In the same year the programme contributed euro 352.537,28 towards a Continuous Microfiltration System put forward by a company called MEMCOR based in Derbyshire. This project ran from December 1992 to April 1996.

6 Apr 2001 : Column: 321W

The third project was from a company called Montgomery Watson Ltd., in Buckinghamshire, and was funded in 1995. The project ran from April 1995 to April 1997, and the programme contributed euro 301.254,48. The project aimed to demonstrate a sustainable, affordable wastewater strategy using aquatic/marginal plants for smaller communities of the European Union, and was based in Northern Greece.

Further information about these projects and ones which have received funding in other member states can be found on the European Commission's website, where there is a searchable database with information about all 600 plus projects selected under LIFE I and II.

The website can be found at life/envir/database.htm

Next Section Index Home Page