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Planning

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what were the median and upper and lower decile periods between (a) the receipt and determination of planning applications, (b) appeals against refusal of planning permission and inquiries into those appeals, (c) inquiries into appeals against refusal of planning permission and inspectors' reports thereon and (d) publication of inspectors' reports and determinations by Ministers in the last year for which information is available. [72320]

Mr. McNulty: Available information for the last financial year (1 April 2001 to 31 March 2002) is as follows:

(a) Data are not collected from local authorities on the time taken to determine every planning application. Information from district authorities is collected on the number of applications decided within eight weeks of receipt, between eight and 13 weeks and over 13 weeks.

2001–02Percentage
Planning applications decided
Less than eight weeks65
Eight to 13 weeks18
More than 13 weeks17

(b) and (c)


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2001–02Upper decileMedian decileLower decile
(b) From start date (notice of appeal) to inquiry in weeks151931
(c) From start date to submission of report in weeks2858160

(d) Information on cases which fall to be determined by the Secretary of State (recovered appeals and called in planning applications) is available on the following basis:

Number of recovered appeals decided within eight weeks, between eight and 13 weeks, and over 13 weeks from receipt of inspector's report

2001–02Percentage
Recovered appeals cases determined by the Secretary of State
Less than eight weeks44
Eight to 13 weeks13
More than 13 weeks43

Number of called in planning applications decided within 13 weeks, between 13 and 20 weeks, and over 20 weeks from receipt of inspector's report

2001–02Percentage
Called in planning applications cases determined by the Secretary of State
Less than 13 weeks36
13 to 20 weeks18
More than 20 weeks46

Mr. Blizzard: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister when the proposals for the revision of Part M of the Building Regulations will be published for consultation. [72870]

Mr. Leslie: My officials, with the assistance of the Building Regulations Advisory Committee, have been preparing proposals for amendments to Part M of the Building Regulations relating to access for disabled people. The proposals for public consultation will be published during the summer recess. Copies will be placed in the Libraries of the House, and the document will be available online on the website of the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, and in hard copy on request. The document will be available in a range of formats to accommodate the needs of people with disabilities.

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what representations he has received on his proposals for planning reforms. [72091]

Mr. McNulty: The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has published a comprehensive statement on the outcome of consultation on the planning Green Paper and copies are available in the Library.

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what measures he intends to bring forward to use the planning system to raise the required density of dwellings in new developments. [72816]

Mr. McNulty: Planning Policy Guidance note 3: Housing, states in paragraph 58 that local authorities should "avoid developments that make inefficient use of land (those at less than 30 dwellings per hectare net)".

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The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister intends to intervene in planning applications for housing that involve a density of less than 30 dwellings per hectare.

Dr. Whitehead: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what assessment he has made of the way in which proposals to reconcile provision for the retention by local authorities of tariffs for the granting of planning permission on major developments as set out in the document, "Reforming Planning Obligations", can be implemented alongside proposals for the reform of the local authority capital finance system as set out in the document, Local Government Finance Formula Grant Distribution-A Consultation Paper. [70111]

Mr. Leslie: We do not consider that there is a significant relationship between proposals on the retention of receipts from planning tariffs and the options for reforming how revenue support for capital finance is distributed, as set out in the Formula Grant distribution consultation paper. Therefore no such assessment has been made.

Parish Councillors

Mr. Djanogly: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many resignations of parish councillors he has received notice of by reason of the new Model Code of Conduct for Parish Councils. [72806]

Mr. Leslie: I refer to the answer the Minister for Local Government, my right hon. Friend the Member for Greenwich and Woolwich (Mr. Raynsford), gave to the hon. Member for North Norfolk (Norman Lamb) on 21 June 2001, Official Report, column 629W.

Since that answer, some 20 more parish councillors (making around 50 in all) have written saying that they have resigned in response to the introduction of the code.

Mr. Djanogly: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister when he is intending to review next the new Model Code of Conduct for Parish Councillors. [72805]

Mr. Leslie: We will decide the timing and form of any review of the Model Code in the light of the experience of councils' adopting and implementing their own codes of conduct in accord with the Model Code.

Telecommunications Working Group

Mr. Norman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the remit is of the Telecommunications Working Group set up by his Department. [72803]

Mr. McNulty: The mobile phone operators have made a series of commitments to improve the handling of telecommunications development.

The Telecommunications Working Group was set up to update the existing Code of Best Practice for Telecommunications.

The terms of reference for the group are:


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National Land Use Database

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many local authorities have submitted returns to National Land Use Database; and which authorities have not made a submission. [72845]

Mr. McNulty: 344 local authorities submitted returns to the National Land Use Database, reporting on previously-developed sites in England in 1998. The following authorities did not make a return then:


227 local authorities have made a return updating the data to 31 March 2001. 135 authorities, as follows have not made a return for 2001:


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