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Mr. Cummings: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many abandoned motor vehicles were collected in the district of Easington in (a) 200001 and (b) 200203; and what the cost was to the local authority. 
The question on abandoned vehicles was asked for the first time in the 200001 Municipal Waste Management Survey. The numbers of abandoned vehicles reported by Easington district council are listed as follows:
Mr. Gray: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what plans he has to revise the guidance given in Circular 6/98 with regard to the definition of affordable housing and the site size thresholds which trigger affordable housing planning gain. 
Mr. McNulty: "Sustainable Communities: Building for the Future" announced our intention to update the existing guidance on planning for affordable housing and, in particular, consult on allowing local authorities to seek affordable housing on smaller sites where this is justified. Any revision of the definition in Circular 6/98 would form part of this update.
Mr. Raynsford: 2001 is the most recent year for which data are available. In 2001, of 5,687 fires in retail premises, 46 per cent. (2,474 fires) were malicious. Of 1,267 fires in agricultural premises, 38 per cent. (486 fires) were malicious. Malicious fires are those where malicious or deliberate ignition was proved or suspected.
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2001, the most recent year for which data are available. Malicious fires are those where malicious or deliberate ignition was proved or suspected.
(5) Figures for 2001 are provisional
Mr. Raynsford: In 2000 there were 62,964 malicious car fires in the UK (from a total of 82,002 car fires). In 2001 there were 70,107 such fires (from a total of 88,242 car fires). Data are not yet available for 2002. Malicious fires are those where malicious or deliberate ignition was proved or suspected.
Arson is one of the major fire threats facing us today. That is why in 1998 the Government commissioned a study into the arrangements for dealing with the problem of deliberate fire-setting. The study reported in 1999 and made a number of far-reaching recommendations; the most significant of which was the creation of the Government-led Arson Control Forum to provide the strategic direction to the national fight against arson. The forum was launched in April 2001. The forum is now taking forward a programme of preventative measures that address arson in its many guises. The forum continues to fund a number of locally based arson control initiatives and has issued guidance on a variety of arson related subjects.
Car fires comprise a considerable element of the deliberate fires problem and Government have taken a number of steps to address this. New powers will enable local authorities to remove unlicensed vehicles more quickly and tighten vehicle registration procedures. Also, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is looking at ways to improve the links between the Driver Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) and local councils to make it easier to trace the owners of derelict or abandoned vehicles.
Mr. Raynsford: In 2001, the most recent year for which data are available, there were 14,769 malicious fires on dwellings in the UK, an average of 40 per day. Malicious fires are those where malicious or deliberate ignition was proved or suspected.
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were since it was established; what the planned expenditure is for 200405; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Leslie: The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister was established as a result of the Machinery of Government changes on 29 May 2002. The forecast gross administration resource expenditure for the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, (including Government Offices but excluding its executive agencies) for 200203 is £269 million; and the planned gross administration resource expenditure for 200405 is £264 million. These figures exclude capital additions and related non-cash charges.
Mr. McNulty: Under the Government's proposals for home information packs, prospective buyers will be provided with key information about homes marketed for sale. Flood risk information is one of the items being considered for inclusion in the pack as part of the standard search arrangements. This proposal is set out in a consultation paper, "Contents of the Home Information Pack", published by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister on 31 March 2003.
Prospective buyers and their professional advisers can already investigate flood risk. The Environment Agency publishes Indicative Floodplain Maps. These are available on the Agency's website: www.environment-agency.gov.uk in the section entitled "What's in your backyard". Prospective home buyers and their professional advisers can interrogate this site by post code to see the area in which a property is situated is at flood risk. More detailed information can be obtained from the local Environment Agency area office and from specialist commercial search companies. New homes should increasingly be located in accordance with the stronger planning guidance we issued in July 2001 in PPG25, "Development and Flood Risk", which sets out a sequential approach to the type of developments compatible with different levels of flood risk. To complement this new guidance, DTLR published, in February 2002, "Preparing for Floods". This sets out interim guidance for improving the flood resistance of all domestic and small business properties. It provides practical advice for existing owners whose properties are at risk of flooding and for those involved in constructing new properties or renovating old ones in flood risk areas. The information it contains is also of value to professionals advising purchasers on the flood resistant capabilities of properties within the mapped areas of flood risk.
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Mr. McNulty: From 200405, funding for the provision of key worker housing will be integrated into the Housing Corporation's affordable housing programme and will target key public sector workers. The Housing Corporation expects to invite bids for key worker housing schemes at the same time as bids for other affordable housing schemes, in the autumn 2003. It will be made clear at that stage which key worker groups will qualify for assistance, taking into account the advice of regional housing boards.
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