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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the total external spending by his Department was on public private partnership consultants in each of the last four years; how many full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period; how many billed consultancy days there were per year; what the implied average cost of each PPP consultant was; how many consultancy firms were used by his Department over this period; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions which of the services of his Department have not been reviewed under the Better Quality Services Initiative; and when they will be reviewed. 
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Mr. Nicholas Brown: The Better Quality Services (BQS) programme was launched in 1998 and adopted by the Cabinet in the Modernising Government White Paper of 1999 as a means of delivering continuous improvements in the quality and effectiveness of Government activities and services. It requires all Government departments to review every activity and service over a five-year period starting in October 1999. The scheme covers all activities in Departments, Agencies and Executive Non Departmental Public Bodies, and is similar in remit to the Best Value programme in local government.
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Gillian Merron: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what discussions he has had with the Lord Chancellor's Department regarding the effect of shared residency orders on the benefit entitlement of non-resident parents when custody is divided equally. 
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Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what percentage of the total expenditure on working families tax credit went to each income decile in each year since the introduction of the working families tax credit; 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 16 April 2002]: The estimated distribution for working families tax credit (WFTC) in 200001 is shown in the table. Note that to derive their decile groups people are ranked by their net incomes including WFTC.
|Decile group of income(13)||Percentage of WFTC expenditure|
|7 to 10 (Top)(14)||10|
(12) Estimated from families reporting receipt of WFTC in the 200001 Family Resources Survey. The estimates are subject to sampling error. They are rounded to the nearest 1 per cent., but should not be taken as accurate to this level.
(13) Recipients of WFTC have been allocated to the decile group of income of the household in which they live (the household may include other people as well as the family in question). The decile group of each household is established by ranking individuals by the net income of the household, equivalised using the McClements scale. Net income is defined as including WFTC, after deducting tax and national insurance contributions, and before deducting housing costs.
(14) The small sample size means that separate reliable estimates for the four top decile groups are not available.
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Budget Red Book, if he will provide his estimate of how much lower grant in the contracted-out rebates is than was expected in the pre-Budget report; and if he will provide his estimate of higher receipt in the later years of the forecasts. 
Mr. Andrew Smith [holding answer 23 April 2002]: Lower growth in contracted out rebates than assumed in the pre-Budget report is estimated to result in an increase of £0.2 billion in net receipts from social security contributions in 200203. Estimates of higher receipts from Budget measures on a national accounts basis from 200304 are given in rows two to four of Table A.1 in the April 2002 Financial Statement and Budget report, and estimates of social security contributions as a percentage of GDP to 200607 are shown in Table C9.
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 23 April 2002]: The report of the Code of Conduct Group on Business Taxation to the ECOFIN Council on 29 November 1999 lists 66 tax measures in European Union member states and their dependent or associated territories which are considered to have harmful features. Nine of these are in the Channel Islands. The United Kingdom wishes to see the harmful aspects of all 66 measures removed.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of (a) how many employees in the United Kingdom are covered by private medical insurance schemes provided by their employer and (b) the additional cost to those employers of the rise in national insurance contributions. 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 29 April 2002]: Over 2 million employees receive benefit from private medical and dental treatment or insurance arranged and paid by employers. This does not include self-employed individuals, or company policies provided for retired employees or for employees with earnings below the P11D threshold.
An additional 1 per cent. class 1A national insurance contribution from 200304 on the amount of private medical and dental benefit provided by employers is estimated to raise around £10 million per year.
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|Department, agency or non-departmental public body||Cost of pay increase in 200102||Cost of forthcoming increase in 200203|
|HM Treasury||The cost is estimated to be £924,000 at the time of settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|Royal Mint||The cost is estimated to be £804,000 at the time of the settlement||Royal Mint do not propose to increase pay rates in 200203|
|National Savings and Investments||The cost is estimated to be £5,232 at the time of the settlement (includes accrued expenditure that is still in the process of being refined||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|ONS||The cost is estimated to be £2,387,000 at the time of settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been given|
|GAD||The cost is estimated to be £105,000 at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|DMO||The cost is estimated to be £82,000 at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|VOA||The cost is estimated to be £4.862 million at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|OGC||The cost is estimated to be £913,000 at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|Inland Revenue||The cost is estimated to be £34.3 million for staff below the SCS and £1 million for SCS staff at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|Customs and Excise||The cost is estimated to be £17 million at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
|Statistics Commission||The cost is estimated to be £10,000 at the time of the settlement||Costs cannot be given because the pay increase has not yet been agreed|
The Statistics Commission has been in existence for just under two years. The total salary costs are as follows: 200001 £135,528 (taken from published accounts); 200102 £199,000 estimated as 200102 accounts have not yet been published.
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