29 Oct 2002 : Column 685W

Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 29 October 2002

INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Microcredit Summit

Paddy Tipping: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development who will represent her Department at the Microcredit Summit +5 being held in Washington from 10 to 13 November. [77359]

Clare Short: : DFID will be represented at the Summit by its Chief Enterprise Development Adviser, David Stanton. We have also invited funding applications to enable prospective participants from developing countries to attend the event.

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER

Business Improvement District

Brian Cotter: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what assessment he has made of provisions to alter the voting majority relating to the proposed business improvement districts outlined in the draft Local Government Bill. [76829]

29 Oct 2002 : Column 686W

Mr. Raynsford: The Transport, Local Government and the Regions Select Committee recommended that a threshold of two thirds of the number of businesses eligible to vote should vote in favour before a Business Improvement District proposal proceeds. A number of other proposals were also made during the consultation on the draft Local Government Bill. We have considered all the proposals that have been made and will announce our conclusions shortly.

Detrunking

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what additional monies will pass to the (a) shire counties and (b) unitary authorities on detrunking. [76271]

Mr. Jamieson: I have been asked to reply.

At the time responsibility for a road passes to a local authority (or very shortly after) it receives revenue funding for routine maintenance in the form of Special Grant under section 88B of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 and support for capital maintenance in the form of supplementary credit approvals. The value of this support is determined by a generalised engineering assessment, with allowance made for local factors such as type of road, level of traffic and the cost of winter maintenance.

Fire Facilities (East Sussex)

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many emergency calls were responded to by the fire brigade in each of the last five years in (a) East Sussex and (b) Eastbourne. [77889]

Mr. Raynsford: The table contains information on incidents attended by East Sussex Fire Brigade for the last five years for which data are available. Incident data are not available below brigade area level.

Fires

Total incidentsAll firesPrimary fires(1)Secondary firesChimney firesFalse alarmsSpecial services(2)
199613,2324,6092,4671,7264165,4813,142
199713,3044,2662,4841,5142686,0213,017
199812,5174,0062,6191,1452425,5652,946
199913,2864,7372,9571,5602205,3513,198
200014,2904,8453,0131,6032295,7203,725

(1) Including additional Xlate" call and heat and smoke damage incidents

(2) Special service incidents related to financial years 1996–97, 1997–98, 1998–99, 1999–2000 and 2000–01.


Fire Fatalities

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many lives were lost due to fires in (a) East Sussex and (b) Eastbourne in each of the last 20 years. [77891]

Mr. Raynsford: The following table shows fatal casualties in fires attended by East Sussex Fire Brigade for the period 1982–2000. 2000 is the latest year for which data are available. Fire casualty figures by brigade area are not available prior to 1982. Data cannot be broken down below brigade area level.

YearFatal casualties
19826
198312
198415
198513
198615
198711
19887
19899
199015
199116
199215
199310
19945
19959
19969
199711
199811
19995
2000(3) 6

(3) Provisional


29 Oct 2002 : Column 687W

Fire Service Cover

Mr. Heath: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what information he has (a) received and (b) requested from (i) chief fire officers and (ii) the Chief Inspector of Fire Brigades on their assessments of the adequacy of fire cover in fire authority areas during a firefighters' strike. [77110]

Mr. Raynsford: The provision of MOD emergency fire cover has been planned centrally in consultation with the Chief Inspector of the Fire Service and locally in consultation with Chief Fire Officers to maximise the effectiveness of call-outs and the availability of a range of firefighting capabilities. The emergency cover would not replicate the firefighting capabilities of the Fire Service, but would aim to minimise the danger to human life. The command and operational structure for emergency cover has been designed to enable maximum flexibility and use of available resources, and there will be a continuous dialogue between the emergency services and Chief Fire Officers.

Mr. Heath: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what level of cross-border co-operation he anticipates between neighbouring fire authorities during a firefighters' strike. [77112]

Mr. Raynsford: In the event of a firefighters' strike, the command and operational structure for emergency fire cover has been designed to enable maximum flexibility and use of available resources, whether from within a county or from assets deployed nearby in neighbouring counties. The fire crews will use a number of temporary stations across counties but the deployment of fire fighters will be based on the assessment by the military in consultation with others such as the police of how best to respond to an emergency in the quickest time possible. The extent to which retained firefighters continue to work will also be taken into account in determining how best to deploy military fire crews.

29 Oct 2002 : Column 688W

Homelessness

Tim Loughton: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister pursuant to the answer of 21 October 2002, Official Report, column 61W, what recent guidance produced by his Department in connection with the Connexions service he has issued to homelessness agencies working with vulnerable young people; and on what date it was issued. [78197]

Mrs. Roche: XWorking Together—Connexions and youth homelessness agencies" outlined effective models of developing the Connexions Personal Adviser role in partnership with homelessness agencies.

The report was launched in October 2001 and has been distributed at conferences discussing youth homelessness issues since then.

Local Government Finance

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will introduce a mechanism for ensuring local government ring-fence monies for waste management as part of the new spending assessment. [77513]

Mr. Raynsford: Our policy is to restrict ring-fencing to cases which are high priorities for Government and where we cannot achieve our policy goal by specifying output or outcome targets; any new ring-fenced grant schemes will also be time-limited. We will announce the results of the review of local government revenue grant distribution in early December. There may also be changes to waste management funding arrangements following detailed consideration of the Prime Minister's Strategy Unit's report on the subject.

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what proportion of spending by (a) Hampshire county council, (b) Fareham borough council, (c) Durham county council, (d) Durham city council, (e) English county councils and (f) district councils was financed bycouncil tax payers in (i) 1997–98, (ii) 1998–99, (iii) 1999–2000, (iv) 2000–01 and (v) 2001–02. [78171]

Mr. Raynsford: The proportion of revenue expenditure financed from the council tax for the above local authorities and class of authorities in the years 1997–98 to 2001–02 was:

Income from council tax as a percentage of spending

1997–981998–991999–20002000–012001–02
Hampshire county council3233353433
Fareham borough council4535394335
Durham county council2325242423
Durham city council3430343635
English county councils2830303030
English district councils3539384038

Source:

1997–98 to 2000–01 Revenue Summary Returns. 2001–02 Budget Estimate Return


Local Government Finance

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the implications are for the detrunking programme of the local government finance formula grant distribution. [76270]

Mr. Jamieson: I have been asked to reply.

Decisions on which methodology is to be used for the local government finance formula grant distribution will not impact on the detrunking programme.


Next Section Index Home Page