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Written Answers to Questions

Wednesday 20 June 2012

Prime Minister

Clyde Naval Base

Dr Julian Lewis: To ask the Prime Minister if he will visit HM Naval Base Clyde in order to assess its contribution to UK defence capabilities. [111774]

The Prime Minister: Government Ministers have made a number of visits to Her Majesty's Naval Base Clyde, the latest made by the Minister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Leicestershire (Mr Robathan), on 14 June 2012. As the largest military establishment in Scotland, the Naval Base makes a valuable contribution towards UK defence capabilities.

Low Associates

Ms Abbott: To ask the Prime Minister whether he has held discussions with the Secretary for State for Health about any potential conflict of interest arising from the Secretary of State's connection with Low Associates. [112317]

The Prime Minister: As set out in section 7 of the Ministerial Code, on appointment to each new office, Ministers must provide their permanent secretary with a full list in writing of all interests which might be thought to give rise to a conflict. The Secretary of State for Health, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), declared his wife's involvement with Low Associates to his permanent secretary and to the Cabinet Office and there is no conflict of interests with his ministerial duties. His wife's role is included in the List of Ministerial Interests published by the Cabinet Office.

Electoral Commission Committee

Alternative Vote

Simon Hart: To ask the honourable Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission what the costs were of the national referendum on the alternative vote, broken down by category of spend. [110936]

Mr Streeter: The final cost of the UK referendum on the parliamentary voting system will be published in a report by the Electoral Commission in the autumn, once all the claims from counting officers and regional counting officers have been agreed and processed.

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As of 7 June 2012, 376 of the 451 claims received from counting officers and regional counting officers for their services and expenses in respect of the referendum had been settled.

On the basis of the information received so far the total cost is expected to be £75,055,000. This can be broken down into the following categories, but does not include any costs incurred directly by local authorities or other organisations:

CategoryCosts (£)

Settled fee and expense payments to counting officers

50,130,000

Outstanding fee and expense payments to counting officers

8,214,000

Campaign mailings by the designated campaigns

8,530,000

Electoral Commission activities

7,912,000

Royal Mail sweep for postal votes on election day

269,000

Total

75,055,000

The cost of the Commission's own activities was £7,912,000. This includes the cost of fulfilling its statutory responsibilities and making grants of public money to the designated organisations appointed as lead campaigners for each of the referendum outcomes.

The Commission's autumn report will also analyse the overall costs of the referendum, including the costs charged by counting officers and regional counting officers, and review in detail the current fees and charges framework. Referendum spend will also be reported as part of the Commission annual accounts for 2011-12 which are currently being prepared.

Communities and Local Government

Affordable Housing

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many affordable homes there were at the end of each year from 1979 to 1997. [112454]

Grant Shapps [holding answer 18 June 2012]: Estimates of stock by tenure are given in Live Table 104 on the Department's website:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/housing/housingresearch/housingstatistics/housingstatisticsby/stockincludingvacants/livetables/

Figures on total affordable housing stock are not available, as some affordable housing schemes (shared equity, shared ownership) are classified as owner occupied housing.

The figures do show that between 31 March 1997 and 31 March 2010, there was a net decrease in social rented stock of 421,000 units.

Pauline Latham: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will estimate the net change in the total number of affordable housing dwellings in England, including demolitions, between 1997-98 and 2009-10. [112612]

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Grant Shapps: Estimates of stock by tenure are given in Live Table 104 on my Department's website.

http://www.communities.gov.uk/housing/housingresearch/housingstatistics/housingstatisticsby/stockincludingvacants/livetables/

Figures on total affordable housing stock are not available, as some affordable housing schemes (shared equity, shared ownership) are classified as owner occupied housing,

The figures do show that between 31 March 1997 and 31 March 2010, there was a net decrease in social rented stock of 421,000 units.

Non-domestic Rates

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate he has made of revenue from business rates in (a) 2011-12 and (b) 2012-13 in each local authority area; and if he will compare such figures with those used in the calculation of the distributable amount for 2012-13. [110906]

Robert Neill: Information on non-domestic rate income in England is provided by local authorities annually on the National Non-domestic Rates (NNDR) 1 form which is submitted to DCLG every February. These figures use national assumptions on the amount of revenue that authorities will be unable to collect and allowances to mitigate the historical differences between national non-domestic rates' budget estimates and outturn figures. The Department does not make separate estimates at local authority level.

Information from these returns, at local authority level, is published on the DCLG website at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/statistics/xls/1910477.xls

for 2011-12 and at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/statistics/xls/2150903.xls

for 2012-13.

Figures on the estimated total contribution to the non-domestic rates pool from the Distributable Amount calculations and from the local authority NNDRl returns are set out in the following table. The figures relate to the local list only: i.e. non-domestic rates collected by the 326 billing authorities in England. The Distributable Amount is not available at local authority level and Outturn data for 2011-12 are not yet available.

£ million
 Distributable amount calculationNNDR1Difference

2011-12

20,220

20,287

+87

2012-13

21,556

21,329

-227

The contribution to the pool derived from the Distributable Amount calculation for 2011-12 is different from that published on the DCLG website as it has been adjusted to reflect the change in methodology used to produce the Distributable Amount for 2012-13.

In relation to the implications for the business rates system for 2013-14 onwards, I note that as outlined in my answer to the hon. Member of 10 October 2011, Official Report, column 18W, our proposals for local

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business rate retention will ensure a fair starting point, so that no local authority is worse off at the outset of the scheme as a result of their business rates base. We are also ensuring there is protection for councils across the country, including a safety net for places in need of additional support.

Private Rented Housing

Oliver Colvile: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what his recommended measure is of private-sector rent levels. [R] [112595]

Grant Shapps: A number of measures exist, differing in terms of method, coverage and frequency.

Official statistics include (a) Valuation Office Agency figures and (b) the English Housing Survey.

Procurement

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the total (a) number and (b) value of contracts issued by (i) his Department and (ii) bodies for which he is responsible which were awarded to small and medium-sized enterprises was in the latest period for which figures are available. [111201]

Robert Neill: My Department's spend with small and medium-sized enterprises has been reported in the Cabinet Office report, “Making Government business more accessible to SMEs-One Year On”, which is available online at:

http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/resource-library/making-government-business-more-accessible-smes-one-year

Spending over £500 is published on my Department's website, which includes data on the size of the firm.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Animals: Roads

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to reduce the number of animals killed on the roads (a) where roads cross lines of animal migration and (b) in other cases. [112108]

Mike Penning: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Transport.

The Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Putney (Justine Greening), is responsible for the Strategic Road Network (SRN) in England. The Highways Agency improves, manages, and maintains the network on her behalf. Local highway authorities are responsible for deciding what arrangements are put in place for their local road network.

The Agency seeks to reduce the potential for animal fatalities by avoiding collisions or reducing their impact. This approach is taken where roads cross lines of animal migration and in all other instances.

The Highways Agency carries outwork to assess and mitigate the impact of the operation, maintenance and improvement of the SRN on wildlife patterns of movement.

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Mitigation includes encouraging animal crossings via tunnels, adapted farm crossings and underpasses. Such measures reduce the risk of animals being killed or injured on the network. Appropriate fencing and planting are also established to promote safe crossing points and direct animals away from the carriageway.

The Agency also undertakes research to better understand the effectiveness of such mitigation measures, in order to minimise the number of animal fatalities on the SRN and therefore reduce their impact. Further advice is published in the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges available online at

http://www.dft.gov.uk/ha/standards/dmrb/index.htm

Batteries: Recycling

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many household batteries are recycled every year; and what assessment she has made of the effect on the environment of such recycling. [112091]

Richard Benyon: Provisional data published by the Environment Agency in April showed that in 2011 the UK recycled around 7,900 tonnes of portable batteries, equivalent to a collection rate of 17.8%.

The Government published an impact assessment of the Waste Batteries and Accumulators Regulations 2009 which identified that recycling batteries benefits the environment by reducing carbon dioxide emissions, reducing the need to extract materials for primary battery production and ensuring that batteries are properly treated and do not end up in landfill where they can leak hazardous chemicals into the ground.

It is estimated that the amount of portable batteries recycled in 2011 has saved between 1,560 and 1,950 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent gases from being emitted into Earth's atmosphere.

Floods

Gavin Shuker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what estimate she has made of the overall cost to the economy of flooding in April and May 2012; [113130]

(2) what estimate she has made of the overall cost to the economy of the flooding in June 2012. [113132]

Richard Benyon: The Department has not made an estimate of the overall cost to the economy for the localised flooding incidents in April, May and June 2012.

Floods: Housing

Gavin Shuker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many homes were (a) at risk of flooding and (b) flooded in June 2012. [112392]

Richard Benyon: The information is as follows:

(a) The Environment Agency's latest published information estimates that there are 5 million properties at risk of flooding in England, of which 2.4 million are at risk from rivers and the sea.

The Environment Agency estimates that around 16,400 properties were protected from flooding from rivers so far this month.

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(b) The Environment Agency's records show that 23 properties have flooded from rivers in England so far this month. The Department has been notified that 360 properties were flooded from other sources, such as surface water and small watercourses. Both these provisional figures include homes, mobile homes and commercial and industrial property.

Pay

Mr Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many staff working for her Department, its executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies are employed through off-payroll engagements costing less than £58,200 per annum; and if she will make a statement. [110818]

Richard Benyon: The information requested is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Sharks: Conservation

Oliver Colvile: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will bring forward legislative proposals to ban the sale of shark fin soup. [111053]

Richard Benyon: The UK Government are aware of the conservation implications of the international trade in shark fins and the need for more stringent controls to ensure any such trade is rooted in sustainable fishing practices. While the UK opposes, and has banned, wasteful finning (removal and retention of shark fins at sea, but discarding the carcass), the Government does not oppose fisheries for species where scientific advice indicates that they can be sustainably exploited, but promotes full utilisation of the shark.

The UK cannot unilaterally take action to ban shark fin soup without contravening EU trade agreements and World Trade Organisation (WTO) obligations.

However, we are not complacent. We believe the market for shark fin products in the UK is on the decrease and we will continue to support campaigns like ‘Bite-Back’ that raise public awareness and change consumer and retailer behaviour.

We will also continue to work closely with the Shark Trust to ensure sharks are properly managed and conserved globally: We consider that the most effective means of protecting sharks is by continuing to press for a range of international conservation and management measures within the appropriate bodies. This includes pushing for changes within the EU and internationally to ensure all sharks are landed with their ‘fins naturally attached’ (thus removing the possibility of shark finning occurring) and supporting scientifically robust proposals for regulating the international trade in shark products through the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).

Justice

Community Orders: Reoffenders

Mr Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment he has made of the likely effect of community penalties on future reoffending rates. [112900]

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Mr Blunt: The proven reoffending rate for adults starting community orders in the 12 months ending June 2010 is 35.3%. For community orders, proven reoffending is when an offender commits an offence and receives a court conviction, caution, reprimand or warning in the one year follow-up period. Following this one year period, a further six months is allowed for cases to progress through the courts.

The Ministry of Justice has published a consultation “Punishment and reform: effective community sentences” which sets out a number of proposals to reform community sentences so that they are effective at both punishing and rehabilitating offenders.

As set out in the impact assessment, the consultation asks respondents for their views on how these proposals could work and the MOJ will assess the impacts when the final proposal is developed.

The impact assessment that the MOJ published alongside the consultation can be found on the following webpage:

https://consult.justice.gov.uk/digital-communications/effective-community-services-1

Data Protection: EU Action

Stephen Mosley: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when his Department plans to publish its response to the EC Data Protection Proposals published on 25 January 2012. [112520]

Mr Kenneth Clarke: The Ministry of Justice ran a call for evidence on the European Commission's data protection proposals between 7 February and 6 March this year. I plan to publish a summary of responses to this call for evidence before the summer recess.

Electronic Tagging

Mr Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether probation trusts will be allowed to compete for the electronic monitoring of offenders in the future. [112901]

Mr Blunt: The Ministry of Justice is currently undertaking a competition for new electronic monitoring contracts. This competition invited bids from any provider who could demonstrate that they meet the required standards. A shortlist of bidders has now been selected to move to the next stage of negotiations, with the new contracts scheduled to be awarded early in 2013. A similar open approach to potential bidders is anticipated for any future competitions for electronic monitoring.

EU Justice and Home Affairs

Mr Raab: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment his Department has (a) made and (b) published of the effectiveness of EU Council Framework Decision 2009/299/JHA in improving mutual recognition of judicial decisions between EU Member States. [112793]

Mr Kenneth Clarke: To date, the Government have neither made nor published any assessment of the effectiveness of EU Framework Decision 2009/299/JHA in improving mutual recognition of judicial decisions between member states. The UK must decide, no later than 31 May 2014, whether to accept full European

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Court of Justice jurisdiction over those EU police and criminal justice measures adopted before 1 December 2009 which have not been amended or replaced. This measure falls within the scope of that decision and will be reviewed accordingly.

Intelligence and Security Committee

Mr Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice with reference to clause 2 of the Justice and Security Bill [Lords], if he will publish the Memorandum of Understanding setting out the intelligence and security matters that the Intelligence and Security Committee may examine or otherwise oversee in time for Second Reading of the Bill in the Lords; and if he will make a statement. [112870]

Mr Kenneth Clarke: The memorandum of understanding (MOU) needs to be agreed between the Intelligence and Security Committee and the Prime Minister. We are starting this process of drafting and agreeing this document, and will do so in parallel with the Bill's passage through Parliament. Once we have an agreed draft of the MOU, it is our intention that it will be published, to help inform debate. We cannot commit to produce a first draft in time for Lords Committee stage but we will present one to Parliament as soon as possible.

Members: Correspondence

Mr Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when he plans to reply to the letter from the hon. Member for Basildon and Billericay of 5 April 2012 regarding a constituent, Mr Williamson. [112925]

Mr Djanogly: A reply has now been sent to the hon. Member. I apologise for the delay.

National Offender Management Service

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) on how many occasions an employee working for a probation trust or area has applied for and been given a post in the National Offender Management Service in each of the last five years; [112825]

(2) how many people from a probation trust or area applied for and were given a (a) permanent and (b) seconded post in the National Offender Management Service in each of the last five years. [112826]

Mr Blunt: This information is not available.

NOMS does not maintain central records of the previous employers of its employed staff and there are no plans to change this arrangement which would be costly.

There are currently no processes for recording secondments to NOMS by probation staff and no data are available on the numbers and employers of secondees in the past five years. This position is currently being rectified. At present there are 25 secondees from probation trusts working in NOMS Headquarters. Probation staff are deployed to work in prisons and young offender institutions.

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Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice on how many occasions the National Offender Management Service has published advertisements inviting people from probation areas or trust to apply for permanent or seconded posts in the National Offender Management Service in each of the last five years. [112827]

Mr Blunt: Records and details of past recruitment advertisement campaigns are held centrally, but the specific information could be obtained only at a disproportionate cost. Where we are specifically seeking applications from colleagues working in probation areas or trust, adverts are place on the Electronic Probation Information Centre (EPIC).

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice on how many occasions people working in the National Offender Management Service who were seconded from the probation service have transferred directly into the civil service in each of the last five years; and what the titles are of each of their posts. [112828]

Mr Blunt: Records detailing secondments into NOMS covering the past five years are not held centrally. However, NOMS is aware of one occasion within this period, on which it sought the permission of the Civil Service Commission to offer direct employment as civil servants to probation service employees who had been seconded to NOMS. The posts concerned were for Commissioning Managers in Regional Offender Managers' offices. IT specialists and four specific knowledge specialists whose departure would have undermined critical business continuity at the time. The posts were converted between 2007 and 2009.

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) what criteria are applied by the National Offender Management Service when seeking to transfer a seconded probation member of staff to the civil service; [112829]

(2) what arrangements govern the transfer process involving probation secondees entering the civil service; and what consultation on the process occurs with relevant organisations including the Probation Chiefs' Association and trade unions. [112830]

Mr Blunt: When filling permanent, employed posts externally, NOMS normally seeks to do so only through open competition. It therefore has no set criteria to determine when a secondee to NOMS should be made an employee without use of open competition. Such a measure would be very exceptional, and would be based on a judgment made at the time, relating to the particular circumstances of the case.

Neither, therefore, does NOMS have a developed procedure to follow in effecting such an appointment—other than that it would seek the permission of the Civil Service Commission before doing so, as required by the Commission's Recruitment Principles, and consult the individual and his or her employer.

Prisoner Escapes

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many offenders released on licence absconded after breaching their licence conditions in each of the last three years. [112875]

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Mr Blunt: From 1 April 2009 to 31 December 2011 a total of 43,041 offenders were recalled for breaching the terms of their licence. By 31 March 2012 42,605 had been returned to custody and 436 had not yet been returned to custody. This data is taken from Table 5.1 of the Offender Management Statistics Quarterly Bulletin available on the Ministry of Justice website at:

http://www.justice.gov.uk/statistics/prisons-and-probation/oms-quarterly

These figures have been drawn from administrative IT systems which, as with any large scale recording system, are subject to possible errors with data entry and processing.

Prisoners: Eating Disorders

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will estimate the proportion of prisoners that have dietary disorders; and if he will conduct an analysis of the incidence of such disorders among prisoners in comparison to the general population. [111646]

Mr Blunt: The National Offender Management Service (NOMS) does not hold central information on the proportion of prisoners that have a dietary disorder. Providing this information could be achieved only at a disproportionate cost.

Currently there are no plans to carry out analysis of dietary disorders among prisoners.

The policy on meals for all prisoners is maintained and developed by the National Offender Management Service (NOMS). Minimum specification and requirement relating to meals for prisoners is contained within a prison service instruction (PSI 44/2010) and its supporting operating guidance manual; it is applicable to all prisons.

NOMS has adopted and incorporated specific Government guidance issued by the Department of Health (DOH) and Food Standards Agency on eating a healthy diet. These initiatives are based on the recommendations from the Committee on Medical Aspects of Food and Nutrition Policy (COMA) and the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN).

Prisoners who have a medical condition must consult an establishment health care professional who will prescribe treatment including any specific dietary requirements. The catering departments in establishments are notified of any medical diets along with advice on how to meet any additional need.

Probation

Mr Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice by what mechanism introducing competitive tendering for the supervision of low-risk offenders will result in greater effectiveness. [112899]

Mr Blunt: On 27 March the Ministry of Justice published proposals to reform probation services to better punish and reform offenders and protect the public. We are seeking to extend competition in probation services, including to the supervision of lower risk offenders, to deliver more effective and efficient services.

We are consulting on the key issues in competing on the management of offenders and on where we should strike the balance in deciding how far to compete on

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offender management. The consultation closes on 22 June and we encourage a wide range of responses.

Mrs Moon: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) what the average duration was for which an offender managed under (a) level 2 and (b) level 3 multi-agency public protection arrangements remained at that level before being transferred to level 1 in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [113133]

(2) how many offenders are managed under (a) level 1, (b) level 2 and (c) level 3 multi-agency public protection arrangements; and if he will make a statement. [113134]

Mr Blunt: Data on the average duration for which offenders are managed under (a) level 2 and (b) level 3 multi-agency public protection arrangements (MAPPA) remained at that level before being transferred to level 1 are not recorded centrally. These data could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

The annual MAPPA report was published on the Ministry of Justice website on 27 October 2011 at the following address:

http://www.justice.gov.uk/statistics/prisons-and-probation/mappa

The number of offenders on 31 March 2011, managed at each level is shown in the table:

MAPPA management levelOffenders

1

48,650

2

2.649

3

190

Procurement

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the total (a) number and (b) value of contracts issued by (i) his Department and (ii) bodies for which he is responsible which were awarded to small and medium-sized enterprises was in the latest period for which figures are available. [111180]

Mr Kenneth Clarke: The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) has issued 570 contracts to small and medium enterprises from 1 April 2011 to 10 June 2012. The total value of the contracts issued is £506.7 million.

The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) does not hold contracts issued by its agencies centrally. This Information can be obtained only at a disproportionate cost to the Department, by a number of staff manually contacting and reviewing each agency.

Regulation

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many regulations his Department repealed between 1 February 2012 and 31 May 2012; and what estimate he has made of the saving to those affected in each case. [112930]

Mr Djanogly: Between 1 February 2012 and 31 May 2012, the Ministry of Justice had laid no statutory instruments which had a regulatory impact.

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Victim Support Schemes

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) what assessment his Department has made of the effect of having local victim and witness services organised and funded through police and crime commissioners; [112462]

(2) what evidence his Department used in developing its plan to regionalise Victim Support's national infrastructure; [112464]

(3) what estimate he has made of the change in the level of costs for Victim Support as a result of the proposed restructuring; [112465]

(4) what meetings he has held with Victim Support and other organisations in developing the proposal that victim support should be controlled by police and crime commissioners. [112463]

Mr Blunt: In the consultation document ‘Getting it right for Victims and Witnesses’ we set out our proposals for the commissioning of support services for victims and witnesses of crime. We proposed a mixed model in which some services would be commissioned at national level but the bulk would be commissioned at local level, the latter to be the responsibility of police and crime commissioners. Our proposals took account of input from organisations which support or represent victims and witnesses, including Victim Support.

I met with the chief executive of Victim Support on 14 May to discuss this and other issues.

The consultation closed on 22 April. We are considering the many points made by respondents and will publish a Government response to the consultation soon. When we do, we will also publish revised versions of the impact assessments and equality impact assessments which accompanied the launch of the consultation in January.

Young Offender Institutions

Seema Malhotra: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the cost to the public purse was of imprisoning a young offender in the latest year for which figures are available. [112503]

Mr Blunt: The average price per place, for the different sectors of the children and young people's secure estate as of 1 April 2012, are set out in the following table:

 Average cost per place 2012-13 (£)(1)

Secure children’s home

212,000

Secure training centre

178,000

Under 18 young offender institution

60,000

(1) To the nearest £000

These figures are based upon the prices that the Youth Justice Board pays for those services it commissions in young people' secure custodial facilities as at 1 April 2012. They are not intended to represent the total price of providing custody and related services to young people. They do not include VAT where it is applicable.

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Culture, Media and Sport

Arts: Greater London

Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what estimate he has made of the number of theatres and arts venues that ceased trading in the Greater London area in 2011. [112799]

Mr Vaizey: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has made no such assessment. Arts Council England (ACE) invests in arts in England and makes funding decisions independently of Government. ACE is aware of examples of venue closures; however, comprehensive lists of closures are not currently collated.

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what estimate he has made of the number of music venues that have ceased trading in the Greater London area in 2011. [R] [112837]

Mr Vaizey: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) has made no such assessment. However, the Government wants to see live music thrive and has honoured its Programme for Government pledge to remove red tape affecting live music by supporting the Live Music Act 2012. This Act will remove costs and bureaucracy for live music performers and venues and will come into force this autumn in England and Wales.

Arts Council England has informed DCMS that the following three music venues ceased trading and remained closed in Greater London in 2011:

The Luminaire (closed 31 December 2010)

The West End of London Barfly

The Cock Tavern Theatre

Arts: North East

Grahame M. Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what estimate he has made of the number of (a) theatres, (b) arts venues and (c) music venues that have ceased trading in the North East in 2011. [112768]

Mr Vaizey: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has made no such assessment. Arts Council England (ACE) invests in arts in England and makes funding decisions independently of Government. ACE is aware of examples of venue closures; however, comprehensive lists of closures are not currently collated.

Film and Television

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the contribution to the economy of foreign exchange earnings from the UK film and television industry. [112823]

Mr Vaizey: Information on total foreign exchange earnings is not available. However, the annual Department for Culture, Media and Sport Creative Industries Economic Estimates publication includes figures for the total exports

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of services for different creative industries sectors. In 2009, exports of services were estimated to be £2.1 billion for the TV and radio sector and £1.6 billion for film, video and photography.

Mobile Phones

Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what discussions he has had with those responsible for establishing the 4G mobile network in the South West on the potential risk of interference to existing Freeview television users. [R] [111946]

Mr Vaizey: I have had no specific discussions with mobile operators with regard to 4G networks in the south-west.

However, the potential risk of interference is not specific to the south-west and could occur anywhere in the UK. Mobile operators will be required to take measures to manage the risk of interference wherever it occurs, and will need to meet the same standards of service throughout the UK.

On 21 February 2012 the Government announced a £180 million scheme to fund solutions to the potential problem of interference caused to TV reception by the new mobile services to be offered in the 800 MHz spectrum.

A single implementation body (referred to as ‘MitCo’) will be set up to manage the delivery of this scheme and provide support to Freeview consumers. This will be owned by the new 800 MHz licensees and the £180 million funding will come from them. Government will bear the risk of any overspend and there will be a 50:50 gain share of any underspend between new licensees and Government when MitCo is closed down.

Ofcom took account of this scheme in its second consultation on coexistence issues between television services and mobile services in the 800 MHz band published on 23 February 2012.

Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what discussions he has had with Ministers in the Northern Ireland Executive and the Irish Government on the harmonisation of mobile roaming charges between the UK and Ireland. [112706]

Mr Vaizey: There have been no discussions between the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, my right hon. Friend the Member for South West Surrey (Mr Hunt), and Ministers of the Northern Ireland Executive or the Irish Government, on harmonising mobile roaming charges.

The issue is one that is recognised by operators in Northern Ireland and the Republic and certain operators have taken measures to reduce the impact on consumers of roaming charges, for example by introducing an “All Ireland” tariff. Under the new European Roaming III Regulation, which comes into effect on 1 July 2012, prices charged for roaming will decrease, dropping to rates much closer to domestic tariffs.

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Public Sector: Pay

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what the (a) highest, (b) median, (c) median full-time equivalent and (d) lowest full-time equivalent salary was paid by (i) his Department and (ii) its public bodies in (A) 2010-11, (B) 2011-12 and (C) 2012-13. [112471][Official Report, 4 July 2012, Vol. 547, c. 9MC.]

Mr Vaizey: The information requested is set out in the following table:

£
 HighestLowestLowest FTEMedianMedian FTE

2010-11

228,883

19,436

6,827

34,498

33,034

2011-12

228,883

19,836

3,901

35,481

34,729

2012-13

228,883

19,836

3,901

35,582

34,769

The highest salary was paid to the director general in the Government Olympic Executive. Their remuneration details are published annually in the Department's Annual Reports and Accounts. This information is also disclosed on the Department's transparency website.

We do not hold this information for our arm’s length bodies. Accordingly, I have asked their chief executives to respond to the hon. Member.

Copies of the replies will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Sports Nutrition

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what discussions his Department has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the potential effect on (a) sports and (b) the London 2012 Olympics of the proposals to charge VAT on sports nutrition products. [112516]

Hugh Robertson: The Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, my right hon. Friend the Member for South West Surrey (Mr Hunt), meets regularly with the Chancellor of the Exchequer, my right hon. Friend the Member for Tatton (Mr Osborne), to discuss a wide range of issues, but this issue has not been raised.

Scotland

Scottish Independence

12. Anas Sarwar: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on Scottish representation on the Monetary Policy Committee in the event of Scottish independence. [111828]

Michael Moore: I have regular discussions with Cabinet colleagues, including the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the right hon. Member for Tatton (Mr Osborne), on a wide range of issues. It is for the Scottish Government to answer questions relating to what independence would

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1012W

mean when it comes to such important issues, such as the question of currency and the role of the Bank of England.

Scottish Government: Tax Raising Power

13. Mrs McGuire: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what discussions he has had with ministerial colleagues on the transfer of tax raising power to the Scottish Government as part of the implementation of the Scotland Act 2012. [111829]

Michael Moore: I have regular meetings with ministerial colleagues on a range of issues. The Joint Exchequer Committee which oversees the implementation of the finance provisions of the Act met on 18 June and both the UK Government and the Scottish Government are committed to the successful implementation of the Scotland Act 2012.

Cost of Living

14. Fiona O'Donnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps he is taking to lower the cost of living in Scotland. [111830]

David Mundell: The actions we have taken to reduce the deficit and rebuild the economy have secured stability and positioned the UK as a relative safe haven, with interest rates near record lows, benefiting businesses and families.

Scottish Agricultural Industry

15. Neil Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what assessment he has made of the effect on the agricultural industry in Scotland of recent progress on the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy. [111831]

David Mundell: CAP reform is of great significance to the agricultural industry in Scotland. I support the efforts of the Minister for Agriculture and Food, my right hon. Friend the Member for South East Cambridgeshire (Mr Paice), to push for a settlement that takes account of the range of interests right across the UK.

I will have the opportunity to discuss this with Scottish farmers and producers tomorrow at the Royal Highland Show.

Transport

Atos

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what the total monetary value is of each contract between her Department and Atos; [111166]

(2) when each contract between her Department and Atos was most recently (a) agreed, (b) renewed and (c) extended. [111167]

Norman Baker: The Department for Transport currently has four contracts with Atos. Details of these are listed below.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1013W

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1014W

Department BUTitle and PurposeStart dateEnd dateEstimated let ValueComments

DFT(c)

Transport Direct

16/01/2003

31/03/2006

£66,000,000

Note: the Department received a financial contribution from the ODA towards the development of the Olympics Spectator Journey Planner during this period, which was developed as part of TD's contract with Atos.

 

Extension 1

01/04/2006

31/03/2007

  
 

Extension 2

01/04/2007

31/03/2009

  
 

Extension 3

01/04/2009

31/03/2011

  
 

Extension 4

01/04/2011

31/03/2013

  
      

HA

ICT Services

01/05/2011

11/12/2012

£33,000,000

The Highways Agency has one current contract with Atos for ICT Services. The total monetary value is estimated at £33M for the period 1 May 2011 to 11 Dec 2012.

      

VOSA

ICT Managed Services (IS2003)

01/01/2003

31/12/2011

£100,000,000

ICT Managed Services (IS2003) which was signed in 2002, with service commencement in January 2003, for an initial period of 9 years with two further extension options of 3 years each.

 

Extension

01/01/2012

01/04/2014

 

The ICT Managed Services (IS2003) contract was extended in line with the first three year extension option in April 2010 taking the duration to December 2014, from the initial term expiry of December 2011.

      
 

MOT Computerisation (MOTC)

01/01/2005

30/09/2015

In the Region of £230m over the ten years of the contract

This is a PFI contract for the MOT Computerisation (IVIOTC) solution signed in 2000, with contractual service commencement in January 2005, originally with Siemens IT Solutions and Services Ltd (at that time known as Siemens Business Services Ltd) who were subsequently acquired by Atos SA in February 2011.

Biofuels

Mr Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what her policy is on proposals from the European Commission to increase the ratio of biofuels. [111367]

Norman Baker: The Renewable Energy Directive agreed by Member States in 2008, set a target for the UK to source 10 per cent of energy used in transport from renewable sources by 2020.

The Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation implements the Directive by setting targets to increase the use of renewable fuels in UK road transport with the aim of reducing carbon emissions. It places an obligation on fuel suppliers to ensure that a certain proportion of fuel supplied is biofuel (4.5% in 2012/13 rising to 5% from 2013/14 onwards).

Genuinely sustainable biofuels have a role to play in efforts to tackle climate change, but it is crucial that this sustainability is assured and genuine greenhouse gas savings realised. Urgent action is needed to address indirect land use change in the Renewable Energy Directive and we have called on the European Commission to come forward with a proposal as soon as possible. Meanwhile, we amended the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation in December 2011 to ensure that biofuels supplied meet the mandatory sustainability requirements set out in the Directive.

Coastal Areas

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress her Department has made with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency on the coastal risk assessments required by the Civil Contingencies Act 2004. [111901]

Mike Penning: Each year central Government, through the Cabinet Office, issue National Risk Assessment Guidelines. These contain six maritime risks relating to fire, flooding, collisions, sinking and stranding of vessels and release of polluting and hazardous materials from vessels or off-shore installations. As a national organisation, Her Majesty's Coastguard has produced a National Risk Assessment to address the six maritime risks. This is published in each Community Risk Register and is up-dated every two to three years, or when a major incident may affect the likelihood or impact scoring.

Heathrow Airport

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport with reference to the answer of 16 April 2012, Official Report, column 53W, on aviation, if she will publish her Department's analysis on whether air services at Heathrow adequately serve important countries for UK exports. [110496]

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1015W

Mrs Villiers: London is currently one of the best connected cities in the world. In 2011 there were more scheduled flights from Heathrow to both India (over 5,500 scheduled flights) and China (over 4,500 scheduled flights when Hong Kong is included) than any of its continental rivals. There were also over 1,000 scheduled flights from Heathrow to Brazil. New direct routes are opening up from London to the emerging economies including Heathrow to Guangzhou (China Southern Airways, June 2012) and Gatwick to Beijing (Air China, May 2012). We intend to consult later in the summer on a draft sustainable framework for UK aviation. Alongside this we intend to publish a call for evidence on maintaining the UK's international aviation connectivity, which we expect will include this analysis.

Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what arrangements her Department has made with the Maritime Coastguard Agency to implement the final report on the Red Tape Challenge submitted to the Reducing Regulation Committee. [112001]

Mike Penning: The deregulatory options emerging from the maritime Red Tape Challenge are being examined as part of the inter-Departmental challenge process. Once this has been concluded, later in the summer, the Department will consult the Reducing Regulation Committee on its deregulatory approach, following which a detailed implementation plan will be developed in conjunction with the Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

Motor Vehicles: Registration

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many requests were made to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency for details of registered keepers of vehicles in each of the last three years; and what proportion of these requests were from the operators of car parks on private land. [112423]

Mike Penning: The following table provides the total number of requests for registered keeper details received at the DVLA for each of the last three years. It is not possible to break down this information to provide only the requests from operators of car parking companies on private land.

 Total inquiries

2009

17,379,410

2010

17,257,261

2011

14,878,644

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport under what criteria the DVLA will release details of registered keepers of vehicles. [112424]

Mike Penning: Information about the keepers of vehicles registered in Great Britain by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) may be disclosed where it is fair and lawful. Specific legislation allows for the registered keeper details to be disclosed to the police, local authorities and customs officers. Information can also be disclosed to those who have a reasonable cause for requiring it. This is primarily where the vehicle has been involved in

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1016W

an incident where there may be liability on the part of the user. The DVLA has safeguards in place to ensure that data are disclosed only to legitimate organisations and are not misused by the recipient.

Private Hire Vehicles: Greater London

Julie Elliott: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps she is taking to promote competition in the private hire industry in London. [112952]

Norman Baker: The Law Commission is currently consulting on the law around taxis and private hire vehicles. This is a good opportunity for those with an interest in the taxi and private hire vehicle licensing regime to feed in their views and to help shape the future of the industry.

The Department will be considering the Commission's consultation document and will be responding in due course.

Railways: East of England

Ben Gummer: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much funding the Greater Anglia franchise has received in cross-subsidies from other franchises in each year since 2004-05. [112924]

Mrs Villiers: Rail franchise subsidy or premium payments are determined on an individual franchise basis, with no account taken of any other franchise, whether operated by the same owning group or not.

The Department does not have any information about any cross-subsidy between franchises as this is a commercial matter for the relevant owning group(s).

Railways: Franchises

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what the cost was to (a) her Department and (b) Network Rail of administering Schedule 8 payments as part of the delay attribution process in the rail sector, in each of the last five years; [112002]

(2) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the TransPennine Express rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112004]

(3) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Southern rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112005]

(4) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Northern rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112006]

(5) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Greater Anglian rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112007]

(6) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the London Midland rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112008]

(7) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Cross-country rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112009]

(8) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Gatwick Express rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112010]

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1017W

(9) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the East Midlands rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112011]

(10) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the South Eastern rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112012]

(11) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Midlands rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112013]

(12) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the Great Western rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112014]

(13) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the West Coast rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112015]

(14) what the cost was to the public purse of determining delay attribution for the East Coast rail franchise in each year since the current franchise began; [112016]

(15) what the cost was of work on delay attribution in the rail sector in each of the last five years; and how many full-time equivalent staff are employed in (a) her Department and (b) Network Rail working on delay attribution. [112017]

Norman Baker: Delay attribution is part of the process of managing operational performance within the rail industry and is for individual operators and Network Rail to administer. As such, any cost to the public purse is subsumed within overall industry costs, and is not identifiable by the Department.

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much has been (a) received and (b) paid out by Network Rail in Schedule 8 payments as part of the delay attribution process in the rail sector in each of the last five years. [112003]

Norman Baker: The information requested is not held by the Department. Schedule 8 is a contractual element within the Track Access Agreement between Network Rail and each operator, and is overseen by the Office for Rail Regulation.

Shipping

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many Ministers from her Department attended the Posidonia international shipping conference in Athens from 8 to 12 June 2012; what the cost to the public purse was of ministerial attendance; and if she will place in the Library a copy of the Ministerial itinerary for the conference. [R] [112833]

Mike Penning: Details of ministerial overseas visits are routinely published every quarter and information covering the period up to the end of December 2011 can be accessed on the Department's website via the following link:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/publications/ministerial-transparency

Information covering the period up to the end of June 2012 will be published in due course.

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many officials from (a) her Department and (b) the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1018W

attended the Posidonia international shipping conference in Athens from 8 to 12 June 2012; what the cost to the public purse was of (i) officials' attendance and (ii) the MCA's corporate stand; and if she will make a statement. [R] [112834]

Mike Penning: Two departmental officials and two MCA officials attended at a cost of £6,349.65. There was no MCA stand at Posidonia.

Shipping: Pollution

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions her Department has held with the European Maritime Safety Agency, and what work it has conducted with that Agency, to co-ordinate oil spill response within the EU. [111997]

Mike Penning: The Department for Transport and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) routinely communicate with EMSA across a broad range of maritime pollution issues. This includes meetings concerning all aspects of oil and hazardous and noxious substances pollution response at sea. Another key element is CleanSeaNet which provides satellite imagery of probable pollution detected whilst providing a deterrent to possible polluters. The Department and MCA also participate in a number of EU programmes which involve EMSA aimed at furthering cooperation and best practice in contingency planning for and response to maritime pollution.

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether her Department has liaised with the Oil Spill Prevention and Response Action Group on her Department's decision to allow ship-to-ship transfers to take place off the coast of Southwold. [111998]

Mike Penning: The Department did not liaise with the Oil Spill Prevention and Response Advisory Group on the Merchant Shipping (Ship-To-Ship Transfers) (Amendment) Regulations 2012. The primary reason was that the group's focus concentrated on oil drilling practices in the UK, in advance of the conclusion of investigations into the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig incident in the Gulf of Mexico in April 2010. The Group's work did not impact on the separate issue of the transfer of oil cargo between ships, the subject of the 2012 Regulations.

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions she or officials in her Department have had with (a) maritime industry bodies and (b) foreign Governments about the Oil Spill Prevention and Response Action Group since May 2010. [112000]

Mike Penning: The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) was a member of the Oil Spill Response and Advisory Group (OSPRAG) when it was set up in May 2010 until it concluded its work in September 2011. Following the conclusion of OSPRAG, the Oil Spill Response Forum (OSRF) was set up in order to finish the few remaining outstanding OSPRAG tasks. The MCA has had a range of discussions with a number of national and international partners; both Government and industry, where they have presented and taken forward the findings from OSPRAG.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1019W

Tugboats: Scotland

Mr MacNeil: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much has been spent from the public purse on emergency towing vessels in the waters around Scotland in each year since 2005. [112703]

Mike Penning: The following table details the cost of emergency towing vessels in the waters around Scotland in each of the financial years since 2005. The annual variability arises from fluctuations in fuel costs, port dues and levels of activity.

Financial year£

2005-06

5,327,351

2006-07

5,569,042

2007-08

5,589,862

2008-09

5,705,843

2009-10

5,497,043

2010-11

5,048,743

2011-12

4,316,341

2012-13 (until the end of May 2012)

650,157

Mr MacNeil: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much has been spent from the public purse on temporary emergency towing vessel contracts in each month since withdrawal of funding for permanent cover. [112704]

Mike Penning: The information is not available on a month by month basis due to the structure of the contracts. The total cost of the contracts for temporary provision of the emergency towing vessel from 17 October 2011 to 31 May 2012 has been £3,783,212. The total cost reflects fixed and variable costs (including fuel costs and port dues which vary according to the level of activity).

Education

16-19 Bursary Fund

Mr Hepburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) what assessment he has made of the effect of the 16 to 19 Bursary Scheme on the number of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds remaining in education; and if he will make a statement; [110289]

(2) how many students in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the north-east and (d) nationally have applied for the 16 to 19 Bursary Scheme in each year since its inception; [110492]

(3) how many people in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the north-east and (d) nationally receive payments under the 16 to 19 Bursary Scheme in each year since its inception; [110493]

(4) what the average payment to students who have applied to the 16 to 19 year old Bursary Scheme was in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the north-east and (d) nationally in each year since its inception. [110494]

Mr Gibb: This year, we estimate that between 18,000 and 20,000 of the most disadvantaged young people (those in local authority care or those who have recently

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1020W

left care; those in receipt of income support; and the most severely disabled young people) will have received annual bursaries of £1,200 to help with the costs of continuing in further education or training. This is more than they would have received under the previous education maintenance allowance scheme.

It has not yet been possible to carry out an assessment of the effects of the 16-19 Bursary Fund because the scheme has only been operating for eight months. Government statistics are being collected on young people's participation and the Education Funding Agency is also monitoring bursary take up. However this information will not allow us to assess the impact of the bursary from the many other factors known to affect young people's participation. For this reason an independent evaluation of the 16-19 Bursary Fund has been commissioned, which will assess the impact of the bursary including its effects on disadvantaged students. This will be complete by the end of 2014.

Information on the number of students that apply for funding under the bursary scheme is held by schools, colleges and training providers and is not collected nationally. Information on the number of students receiving payments is being collected by the Education Funding Agency and should be available in early 2013.

For similar reasons, it has also not been possible to assess how many people have received payments from the 16-19 Bursary Fund to date. The Government has asked providers for data, including the numbers of young people who have received Bursary Fund payments during the academic year, and this should be available in early 2013. The data are being collected at local authority level, so data on the number of Bursary Fund recipients in the Jarrow constituency will not be available.

It is also not possible at present to ascertain how much on average, young people have received. The Government has asked schools, colleges and training providers for data, including the numbers of young people who have received Bursary Fund payments during the academic year, and this should be available in early 2013. The data will show how many young people have been supported by the Bursary Fund and this information should enable average payments to students to be calculated, but for the reasons set out above, data will not be available on a constituency basis.

Northern Ireland

Bill of Rights

Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when he plans to bring forward legislative proposals for a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland; and if he will make a statement. [112645]

Mr Swire: The Government remains committed to resolving this issue in a way that commands broad support in Northern Ireland, and continues to make efforts to achieve this. The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, my right hon. Friend the Member for North Shropshire (Mr Paterson), wrote to party leaders in Northern Ireland, including the hon. Lady, raising the possibility of work being taken forward by the Northern Ireland Assembly on this. So far, he has had no responses to this suggestion.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1021W

Pay

Rachel Reeves: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what the (a) highest, (b) median, (c) median full-time equivalent and (d) lowest full-time equivalent salary was paid by (i) his Department and (ii) its public bodies in (A) 2010-11, (B) 2011-12 and (C) 2012-13. [112475]

Mr Paterson: The information is as follows:

(A) 2010-11

FTE£

Highest salary

120,006

Median salary

26,127

Lowest salary

14,880

(B) 2011-12

FTE£

Highest salary

110,000

Median salary

24,158

Lowest salary

15,440

(C) 2012-13

Ministry of Justice pay levels for 2012-13, which my Department follows, have yet to be set, so FTE salary information cannot be provided.

My Department has two non-departmental public bodies—the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission and the Parades Commission for Northern Ireland. The hon. Member may wish to write to these Commissions directly.

Regulation

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many regulations his Department repealed between 1 February 2012 and 31 May 2012; and what estimate he has made of the saving to those affected in each case. [112929]

Mr Paterson: As my Department has responsibilities chiefly for constitutional, electoral and national security matters it has not repealed any regulations during this period.

Work and Pensions

Health Insurance

Gordon Henderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many staff working in his Department are entitled to private health care as part of their remuneration package. [111259]

Chris Grayling: The Department for Work and Pensions does not provide private health care to its employees as part of their remuneration package.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1022W

Low Associates

Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether his Department has received any representations from Low Associates since May 2010. [111592]

Chris Grayling: We have no record of any approaches or representations from Low Associates to Ministers or officials.

Occupational Pensions

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 17 May 2012, Official Report, column 290W, on occupational pensions, what steps his Department has taken to seek the views of (a) stakeholders in the development of the first evaluation report of the impact of the workplace pension reforms, (b) the agency worker industry in the development of the first evaluation report and (c) the agency worker industry in the development of future reports. [111243]

Steve Webb: The workplace pension reforms baseline evaluation report will be published in July 2012 at:

http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd5/rrs-index.asp

The baseline report aims to describe the landscape before the implementation of the reforms. This will be the first in a series of annual reports on the impact of the reforms as outlined in the Department's evaluation strategy.

The baseline report and subsequent reports will reflect the views of a range of stakeholders. To inform the scope of the evaluation, views were gathered during workshops held in March 2012, which were attended by national bodies representing the agency sector, alongside other key stakeholders including industry providers, academics and research organisations. The outcomes of the workshops and a full list of organisations consulted will be published in the report.

Analysts from the Department have also been working with stakeholders to identify information sources that can be used to measure the impact of the reforms on different sectors and groups and ways to enhance the analysis. A list of information sources will be included in the baseline report.

Stakeholder views will continue to be taken into account over the course of the evaluation programme.

State Retirement Pensions

Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the effect on pensioners of the phasing out of payment of the state pension by cheque. [112461]

Steve Webb: We have sought the views of key customer representative groups, such as the RNIB and Age UK, to help us understand the needs of existing cheque payment users. Their feedback, along with that of pensioners themselves, has played an important role in helping us design the simple payment, to ensure that it is fully accessible.

The simple payment will still allow pensioners to have easy access to their cash at a convenient outlet, and will provide the flexibility required for use by those who rely on someone else to collect their money for them.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1023W

Universal Credit

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps his Department has taken to prevent fraudulent claims via online access to universal credit. [111125]

Chris Grayling: Universal credit will be protected by comprehensive and sophisticated cyber defence and counter-fraud systems.

There are a number of activities underway in Government to prevent fraud and error through the online channel, as this the key to being “digital by default”.

The DWP is developing the integrated risk and intelligence service for the purpose of identifying fraudulent universal credit claims at the point of contact using the latest tools and techniques now common in other sectors.

In recognition of the very different threats faced when conducting business on line we are investing in the following to support universal credit:

The creation of strong cyber defences to protect our infrastructure and data from malicious software

Our data analytics capability is being enhanced to risk assess transactions before they enter the system and allow us to fast track low risk customers for payment, and route high risk claims to an appropriate fraud intervention prior to the claim being paid.

Business, Innovation and Skills

Business: Yorkshire and the Humber

Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how much was invested in enterprises in (a) the area currently covered by City of York Council and (b) Yorkshire and the Humber by (i) Yorkshire Forward and (ii) the Regional Growth Fund (A) in cash terms and (B) at 2012 prices in each year since Yorkshire Forward was created. [111413]

Mr Prisk: Information on disbursements to enterprises in the City of York could be made available only at disproportionate cost. Yorkshire Forward's net expenditure across its region since it was created in cash terms and at 2010-11 prices (the latest available) was:

£ million
 CashEquivalent in 2010-11 prices

1998-99

1

1

1999-2000

121

155

2000-01

125

159

2001-02

207

260

2002-03

211

258

2003-04

244

292

2004-05

288

335

2005-06

294

334

2006-07

313

344

2007-08

300

323

2008-09

292

305

2009-10

320

329

2010-11

172

172

2011-12

172

172

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1024W

From the first and second rounds of the regional growth fund (RGF), bids to the value of £44.4 million and £134.6 million respectively were successful from the Yorkshire and Humber region. The third round bids are currently being assessed. The RGF has spent £31.8 million in 2011-12 and £38,709 in 2012-13 (to date) in the region.

Business: Young People

Debbie Abrahams: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what funding his Department provides to entrepreneurs aged 16 and 17 years old. [111058]

Mr Prisk [holding answer 14 June 2012]: The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) provides funding to a number of organisations, including the National Association of College and University Entrepreneurs, working with schools and colleges to raise enterprise awareness and to build enterprise capability amongst all young people. Funding is focused upon supporting schools and colleges to provide hands-on enterprise experience as the evidence shows that this has the greatest impact upon perceptions of enterprise as a viable career option.

BIS has recently launched a pilot scheme to test demand for start-up lending amongst 18 to 24 year olds and more information on this scheme can be found at:

www.startupbritain.org/loans

Start-ups typically raise finance from a diverse range of informal and formal sources. For those seeking help in identifying more formal sources of finance:

www.businesslink.gov.uk

provides a searchable database at:

http://improve.businesslink.gov.uk/resources/business-finance-finder

Conditions of Employment

Mr Umunna: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what official meetings Adrian Beecroft had as part of his review of employment law. [110602]

Norman Lamb: This is a matter for Mr Beecroft.

Employment Agencies

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment his Department has made of the role of the agency worker industry in (a) tackling unemployment, (b) promoting job creation and (c) protecting a flexible, skilled workforce in the UK. [111242]

Norman Lamb: We believe that the agency worker industry provides an important but relatively small range of employment opportunities. The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC's) latest Recruitment Industry Trends reported that there were around 1 million temporary agency workers in the UK in 2010/11, compared with around 29 million people in employment overall.

The indication is that agency work enables some people to return to work. Evidence from the Government's Labour Force Survey suggests that in 2011, over half of

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1025W

agency workers who had been in their current job for 12 months or less had not been in paid employment or self-employed prior to entering that post.

There is also evidence that the agency worker industry leads to some workers initially taken on temporarily from an agency being made permanent employees at the firm they have been hired by. The latest REC Recruitment Industry Trends reports that slightly under half of agencies (44%) recorded some movement of their workers into permanent employment with the hiring firm.

Temporary agency workers are represented in all the main occupational groups. In the fourth quarter of 2011 the Labour Force Survey showed that over 25% of temporary agency workers were in managers, directors and senior officials, professional or associated professional and technical occupation groups, while 22% were in elementary occupations.

Information on the agency worker industry is taken from a number of sources which is not always compatible.

Regional Growth Fund

Sir Alan Meale: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what grants have been allocated through the Regional Growth Fund to organisations in Northamptonshire, Rutland, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire to date. [112311]

Mr Prisk: Given in the following table is the amount of regional growth fund grants allocated to organisations in Northamptonshire, Rutland, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire from the first two bidding rounds.

RegionAmount (£ million)

Northamptonshire

Nil

Rutland

Nil

Leicestershire(1)

26

Lincolnshire(1)

13

Nottinghamshire(1)

3

Derbyshire(1)

46

(1) Includes the addition of Leicester, North Lincolnshire, North East Lincolnshire, Nottingham and Derby as part of regions specified. The definition for ceremonial counties have been used as opposed to county councils.

Sir Alan Meale: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many Regional Growth Fund bids have been negotiated and agreed in each region to date; and what the monetary value is of those bids. [112312]

Mr Prisk: Given in the following table is the regional breakdown of bids agreed from round one and two of the regional growth fund.

RegionNumber of finalised bidsAmount (£ million)

North West

18

74

North East

33

38

Yorkshire and Humber

12

64

West Midlands

12

164

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1026W

East Midlands

1

2

London, South East and East of England

3

43

South West

10

75

Nationwide

7

231

Health

Action on Smoking and Health

Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much was paid by his Department to Action on Smoking and Health in 2011-12; and how much his Department has allocated in 2012-13. [112824]

Anne Milton: Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) received funding of £150,000 in 2011-12 through the Department's ‘Section 64 General Scheme of Grants to Voluntary and Community Organisations'. The Grant was awarded for a project to ‘Work to support delivery of the Tobacco Control Plan for England'.

ASH has made an application for funding in 2012-13 for a project proposal ‘Supporting the Tobacco Plan for England 2012-13'. The Department is currently considering this application.

Alcoholic Drinks: Children

Tracey Crouch: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children between the ages of (a) 12 and 14, (b) 14 and 16 and (c) 16 and 18 living in (i) Medway unitary authority, (ii) Tonbridge and Malling unitary authority and (iii) Chatham and Aylesford constituency were receiving treatment for alcohol dependency in the latest period for which figures are available. [112847]

Anne Milton: It is not possible to provide the number of people receiving specialist alcohol interventions living in Tonbridge and Malling Unitary Authority or Chatham and Aylesford constituency. The number of 12 to 17-year-olds receiving specialist alcohol interventions in Kent and in Medway unitary authority is given in the following table.

Age12-1314-1516-17Total

Kent

*

46

67

*115

Medway

*

6

8

*15

Note: All numbers under 5 have been suppressed to protect clients identification. Where totals could be derived, figures have been rounded to the to nearest 5 and marked with an asterisk ‘*’. Source: 2010-11 National Drug Treatment Monitoring System data for Primary alcohol clients in Kent and Medway Drug and Alcohol Action Team areas

Within these statistics, a young person's age is determined when they first start treatment or if they are already in treatment at the start of the year.

Young people and their treatment needs differ from adults. Very few young people develop dependency. Those who use drugs or alcohol problematically are

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1027W

likely to be vulnerable and experiencing a range of problems, of which substance misuse is one.

The majority of young people accessing specialist alcohol interventions have problems that require psychosocial, harm reduction and family interventions, rather than treatment for addiction. Most young people need to engage with specialist alcohol interventions for a short period, often weeks, before continuing with further support elsewhere within an integrated young people's care plan.

Brain Cancer

Andrew Stephenson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will take steps to ensure that guidelines on identifying the signs and symptoms of brain tumours and on referral of patients for assessment are integrated into general practice and emergency medicine practice; [112646]

(2) what steps he is taking to implement National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidance on best practice on brain tumours. [112700]

Paul Burstow: Since its publication in 2005, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidance ‘Referral guidelines for suspected cancer’ has helped clinicians to identify and refer patients with symptoms of suspected cancer, including brain tumours. This guidance has been designed for professionals and agencies including general practitioners, nurse practitioners, ophthalmic practitioners, out-of-hours services, NHS Direct and clinicians in accident and emergency departments.

‘Improving Outcomes for People with Brain and Other Central Nervous System (CNS) Tumours’, published by NICE in 2006, sets out best practice recommendations on the treatment, management and care of patients with brain tumours.

Our Cancer Outcomes Strategy makes it clear that both sets of NICE guidance will continue to be a feature of all commissioned cancer services. Cancer Networks are working with the NHS to support compliance with Improving Outcomes Guidance. Peer review measures for brain and CNS tumours are supporting the NHS to evaluate services for patients with brain tumours and to drive improvement across the service.

Cancer

Andy Burnham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health with reference to the Commissioning Outcomes Framework, what recent assessment his Department has made of the effect on cancer survival rates of the proposals to seek improvements in five year survival rates only for colorectal, lung and breast cancer. [109538]

Mr Simon Burns: The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has been asked to develop recommendations for indicators for the Commissioning Outcomes Framework to measure the quality and outcomes of services commissioned by clinical commissioning groups.

NICE’s independent Commissioning Outcomes Framework Advisory Committee met on 21 and 22 May

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1028W

to review and consider the evidence base on the indicators published as part of NICE’s consultation in February 2012.

NICE intends to publish the recommendations of its Advisory Committee in August 2012. It will then be for the NHS Commissioning Board to decide on the final indicator set to use for the Commissioning Outcomes Framework.

Mr Virendra Sharma: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how and by whom he proposes that the NHS Commissioning Board will be held to account for the commissioning of specialist cancer services. [112601]

Paul Burstow: The Secretary of State for Health, the right hon. Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), will hold the NHS Commissioning Board (NHSCB) to account for the outcomes set out in the NHS Outcomes Framework and for the quality of the services that it commissions directly.

No final decisions have yet been taken on which services the NHSCB will directly commission from April 2013. Work is currently under way with national health service commissioners in developing the list of services. Ministers expect to be in a position to set out an initial list in the summer. This will then be subject to consultation with the NHSCB before regulations are made.

Sir Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent discussions his Department has had with the NHS Commissioning Board Special Health Authority on how the National Cancer Patient Experience Survey could be used to improve patient care and services; and if he will make a statement. [112832]

Mr Virendra Sharma: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he plans to take to ensure that the results of the forthcoming National Cancer Patients Experience Survey will be used to improve patient care and services. [112600]

Paul Burstow: The fieldwork for the National Cancer Patient Experience Survey is finished and analysis is under way. National and trust level reports are expected to be published in the summer.

The Department will make the national and trust level reports widely available to drive and inform local service improvement. The reports will provide a breakdown of the experience of cancer patients across a number of stages in the cancer care pathway and will include analysis of improvement levels since the 2010-11 survey. The trust level reports will provide benchmarked data nationally and between teams so that priority improvement areas can be identified.

The National Cancer Action Team has worked with cancer networks over the last year to use the results of the 2010-11 survey to drive service improvements and will continue this work using the results of the 2011-12 survey.

The Department is encouraging stakeholders in the third sector who are planning to use the survey results to identify and share best practice in patient care and services to support service improvement activity.

20 Jun 2012 : Column 1029W

All the quantitative data will be sent to the National Data Archive at Essex University and will be freely available for access by researchers to undertake a series of analyses under the rules of the archive.

No specific discussions have taken place with the NHS Commissioning Board (NHSCB) Special Health Authority on how the National Cancer Patient Experience Survey could be used to improve patient care and services in the future. However, from April 2013 onwards, decisions about the survey will be the responsibility of the NHSCB.

Care Homes

Sarah Newton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health with reference to the letters from his Department of 25 January and 18 April 2012, what reports he has received of local authorities negotiating with care homes on behalf of people self-funding their care. [112769]

Paul Burstow: Local authorities, as autonomous public bodies, have discretion to decide how best to arrange residential care for their populations. They are not required to notify the Department whether they arrange residential care on behalf of those who fund their own care and do not do so. The Department does not, therefore, hold the information requested.

Dental Services

Ben Gummer: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of NHS dentists correcting substandard work by dentists trained overseas given temporary registration by the General Dental Council; [112529]

(2) how many dentists trained overseas were given temporary registration by the General Dental Council in each of the last five years. [112530]

Mr Simon Burns: This information is not held centrally. The General Dental Council (GDC) approves the temporary registration of selected overseas dentists under longstanding arrangements whereby these dentists obtain training and experience of working in the national health service, which, on returning home, they use to the benefit of their local health services. Dentists with temporary registration can practise only under the supervision of a GDC registered consultant. Given that the number of temporary registrants is not large and we would normally expect their supervisors to correct any substandard dentistry as part of their supervisory role, we doubt if the costs are disproportionate to the benefits of the arrangements.

The number of temporary registrations approved by the GDC in each of the last five years ending 31 December is given in the following table.

 Number

2007

214

2008

309

2009

294

2010

238

2011

192