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Telecommunications Working Group

Mr. Norman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will list the representatives of (a) the mobile phone network industry, (b) central and local government and (c) other organisations sitting on the Telecommunications Working Group. [69483R]

Mr. McNulty: Members of the Telecommunications Working group are:

Christopher BowdenOffice of Deputy Prime Minister
Charlotte SewellOffice of Deputy Prime Minister
Jim DaviesDepartment for Trade and Industry
George HookerDepartment for Health
Russell Kent-SmithRadiocommunications Agency
Kevin O'DellDepartment for Education and Skills
Peter RobertsNational Assembly for Wales
Lee SearlesLocal Government Association
Gerry AnsellLondon borough of Waltham Forest
Ian FletcherWycombe district council
Graham JonesLondon borough of Harrow
Phil JoyceLeeds city council
John WalkerCity of Westminster
Jane EvansHutchison 3G
Peter Foster02
Alan Freeman02 (also Airwave)
Nick GreerVodafone
Adrian MangerT Mobile
Adrian ReeveOrange
Saleem ShamashCrown Castle
Nicole HughesFederation of Electronic Industries

In addition, the following people do not attend meetings but receive and comment upon working group papers:

Alan CameronScottish Executive
John LindenDepartment for the Environment Northern Ireland
Norman SmithHealth and Safety Executive

Right to Buy

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what criteria he plans to use for the redistribution of the pooled right to buy receipts from local authorities; and if they will include land value and development costs. [69257]

Mr. McNulty: We will be consulting on the operation of the new arrangements for pooling a proportion of future local authority housing capital receipts shortly.

Social Services

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the standard spending assessment was for each social services authority in England in each year from 1990–91 to 2001–02; and what it is projected to be for the financial year 2002–03, adjusted for inflation at current values. [69714]

Mr. Leslie: A table showing the information requested for both total SSA and personal social services SSA has been placed in the Library of the House.

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House of Commons Journal

Ian Lucas: To ask the hon. Member for Roxburgh and Berwickshire, representing the House of Commons Commission, if the House of Commons Commission is collaborating with the History of Parliament Trust and the Humanities Research Institute of the University of Sheffield in producing an electronic version of the House of Commons Journal. [68885]

Mr. Kirkwood: I understand that in February 2001 the Trustees of the History of Parliament commissioned the Humanities Research Institute of the University of Sheffield to create a searchable electronic text of Volume 1 of the House of Commons Journal, covering the period 1547 to 1628. This was intended as a pilot study in digitising the contents of the early Journals of the two Houses, which are of great historical value but have hitherto suffered from lack of an adequate index. The electronic text of Volume 1, which has now been submitted to the Trustees, will be of particular use in the preparation of the 1604–1629 section of the History.

I also understand that, as a follow-up to the pilot study, the Trust has collaborated with the Institute of Historical Research and the Victoria County History in a successful bid to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for funding for a larger pilot project in digitisation of historical sources; this project will include the digitisation of a further volume of the Journal of this House.

History of Parliament Trust

Ian Lucas: To ask the hon. Member for Roxburgh and Berwickshire, representing the House of Commons Commission (1) if he will make a statement on the size of the House of Commons Commission's grant in aid to the History of Parliament Trust for each year since 1995–96; [68883]

Mr. Kirkwood: The House of Commons Commission provides funds for the work of the History of Parliament Trust in line with the Trust's three-year financial plans and annual estimates. These plans allow for the work of the Trust to proceed at its present level of activity. Since 1999, the House of Lords has also provided support for the Trust. These grants in aid cover the whole of the Trust's running costs, and represent a significant subsidy.

The table shows the grant in aid made to the Trust since 1995–96:

Grant in aid

YearHouse of CommonsHouse of LordsTotal

The retail price charged for the Trust's publications represents only the cost of printing and distribution of the volumes, rather than the costs of the research, which are met by the grant in aid from the Houses of Parliament. This mechanism provides more certainty of support for the research work, while indirectly subsidising the cost of the publications. I understand that there are no plans for a specific retail price subsidy. The pricing policy has always been governed by the need to strike a balance between affordability and the need to make some financial return on sales, recognising that the great majority of sales are likely to be to institutions rather than to individuals. By the standards of academic publications, the History's volumes are reasonably priced and are affordable by university libraries, country record offices and public libraries.

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Sue Doughty: To ask the Chairman of the Administration Committee (1) if she will state the total volume of paper purchased by the House in the last 12 months; what proportion of this comes from recycled sources; and what plans there are to increase this proportion; [65616]

Mrs. Roe: The Administration Committee has oversight of the provisions of stationery for use by Members. The House's policy is to use recycled products where practicable and cost-effective; there are no plans to change the policy.

The House does not keep central records of paper used by the six House Departments; but we estimate that some 80,000 reams (200 tonnes) were used during 2001–02 at a cost of approximately £1.5 million. Over 50 per cent. of the paper used was recycled and chlorine-free. Within these figures, major users were the Vote Office (9,100 reams) and the Serjeant at Arms Department (45,000 reams).

The Serjeant at Arms Department has been providing recycled stationery to Members of Parliament for a number of years. All Members' stationery purchased through the House's central stationery contract (both paper and envelopes) is made from recycled paper. During 2001–02 approximately 162 tonnes of stationery were purchased at a cost of around £1 million. The amounts were:

DescriptionQuantityVolume (tonnes)
Bespoke paper(9)15,00047
Photocopier paper(9)30,00075

(9) Reams

In 1998, on the recommendation of the Committee, recycled paper was introduced for all letterhead paper and envelopes purchased by Members of Parliament. All virgin pulp papers were withdrawn. Recycled photocopier paper has been supplied for a number of years.

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As part of the "local paper for London" scheme organised through the BioRegional Development Group, Evolve Business photocopier paper has been introduced. Members now use this paper in their parliamentary and constituency offices and in photocopiers on the parliamentary estate.

For information on the purchase and use of other goods and materials from renewable or recycled sources, I refer the hon. Member to replies given by the hon. Member for Roxburgh and Berwickshire (Mr. Kirkwood), representing the House of Commons Commission, to the hon. Gentleman the Member for Hazel Grove (Mr. Stunell) on 11 July 2002, Official Report, columns 1116–17W.

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