Culture, Media and Sport

Arts

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps she is taking to support the arts sector to make an increased contribution to the economy. [154428]

Mr Vaizey: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport works with the Arts Council England and other partners to support the arts sector. Neither the Department nor Arts Council England exclusively work to increase the arts sector's contribution to the economy but, rather, to develop and sustain excellent art which can be enjoyed by as many people as possible. A happy consequence of the sector producing popular, world-leading arts and culture are the concomitant economic benefits. There were demonstrated by the recent report commissioned by Arts Council England and produced by the Centre for Economics and Business Research which presents an analysis of the contribution arts and culture makes to the national economy.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 801W

BBC

Ms Gisela Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will hold discussions with the BBC Trust to ensure that the implementation of Delivering Quality First is in line with the BBC Charter requiring representation of (a) the regions and (b) the West Midlands and Birmingham. [157332]

Mr Vaizey: This is a matter for the BBC Trust. Within the framework of the Charter and Agreement, the BBC is editorially and operationally independent of Government and there is no provision for the Government to intervene in the BBC's day-to-day activities.

The Midlands remains an important part of the BBC production landscape, with a range of BBC output produced in Birmingham, including The Archers, Doctors and Father Brown, and as well as broadcasting a number of local radio stations to different parts of the Midlands. In addition the headquarters for the BBC's 39 local radio stations, 42 online sites and England's 12 television regions is based in Birmingham, alongside BBC England's News and Sport online team. Birmingham is also the base for the BBC's regional news and current affairs programming for the Midlands, as well as being a key regional centre for the Asian Network.

Broadband

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what steps her Department is taking to achieve EU broadband targets. [154688]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 13 May 2013]: Central and local government are investing £1.2 billion in the Government's broadband programme, which will see a transformation of broadband services in the UK by 2015, contributing significantly to meeting the EU 2020 targets. A combination of commercial and public deployments will see much greater availability of superfast broadband; 100,000 more premises each week are gaining availability; and around 50,000 connections to superfast broadband are being taken up each week.

Stephen Mosley: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress she has made in ensuring that all mobile network operators are signed up to the Broadband Stakeholder Group Open Internet Code of Practice. [156247]

Mr Vaizey: Good progress has been made, with the majority of internet service providers and mobile network operators signed up to the Open Internet Code of Practice developed by the Broadband Stakeholder Group. We believe that greater consumer awareness will drive further signatories, and are pleased that all the major operators are signed up to the Broadband Stakeholder Group’s Traffic Management Transparency Code of Practice.

Stephen Mosley: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will publish a timeline by which all mobile network operators must sign up to the Broadband Stakeholder Group Open Internet Code of Practice. [156248]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 802W

Mr Vaizey: The Broadband Stakeholder Group’s Open Internet Code of Practice is a voluntary code, which has been signed up to by the majority of internet service providers and mobile network operators. As a voluntary code, Government will not be publishing a timeline by which operators must sign up.

However, the Government continue to urge all operators to become signatories to the code.

Broadband: Rural Areas

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport whether the independent assurance review of BDUK rural broadband contracts conducted by Grant Thorton identified differences in (a) charges, (b) subsidy and (c) other matters in the offers made by BT to the local authorities concerned. [154687]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 13 May 2013]: The independent assurance review is still in progress and has not yet reported its findings.

David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress she has made on rolling out rural broadband (a) through hard wired connections and (b) via satellite; and if she will make a statement. [157614]

Mr Vaizey: 22 (50%) of the BDUK local broadband projects have now signed contacts, which represents two-thirds of the BDUK allocated funding. The four most recently signed contracts were: Northumberland (17 April), Durham (26 April), Cheshire Councils (29 April) and West Sussex (15 May), with a combined BDUK funding allocation of £27.2 million. The first Cabinet went live in North Yorkshire in December 2012 and more have followed in Wales, Lancashire and Surrey. The number of additional premises passed supported by BDUK funding is now over 50,000. To date there have not been any additional satellite connections supported by BDUK funding, although a satellite service is already available to virtually everyone in the UK from commercial suppliers.

Culture, Practices and Ethics of the Press Inquiry

Mr Rob Wilson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the cost to the public purse was of fees paid to Ms Carine Patry Hoskins in her capacity as junior counsel to the Leveson inquiry on the Culture, Practice and Ethics of the Press. [156335]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 20 May 2013]:Carine Patry Hoskins acted as counsel to the Leveson inquiry from July 2011 until November 2012. Her total fees for this period were £218,606.

Heritage Lottery Fund

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much Heritage Lottery funding was allocated to each of the principal seaside towns in England in each of the last 15 years. [154586]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 803W

Mr Vaizey: The figures for Heritage Lottery funding to each local authority in England is published on the Department's website at the following link:

http://www.lottery.culture.gov.uk/Search.aspx

Internet

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what progress she has made on ensuring that internet operators and internet service providers sign up to the Government’s Open Internet Code of Practice; and what consequences there are for those who do not do this. [156905]

Mr Vaizey: Good progress has been made, with the majority of internet service providers and mobile network operators signed up to the Open Internet Code of Practice developed by the Broadband Stakeholder Group. The Government believe, that greater consumer awareness will drive further signatories, and are pleased that all the major operators are signed up to the Broadband Stakeholder Group’s Traffic Management Transparency Code of Practice.

Newspaper Press

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what (a) representations she has received and (b) discussions she has had on the No More Page 3 campaign. [155309]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 15 May 2013]:I hold regular discussions with a range of stakeholders in the media and press on a range of issues, including around representation of women in the media. In addition I have received a number of letters from hon. Members and other key interested parties on the No More Page 3 campaign.

Press: Regulation

John McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the timescale and process is for the Privy Council to consider the cross-party Royal Charter on press regulation; and if she will make a statement. [156032]

Paul Farrelly: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport when she expects that the royal charter on self-regulation of the press, as debated in the House on 18 March 2013, will be presented to the Privy Council. [157399]

Mr Vaizey: The 18 March cross-party royal charter meets the Leveson principles and has been agreed by the three main political parties. However, the Press Board of Finance (PressBoF) petitioned the Privy Council Office with a draft royal charter for the independent self-regulation of the press on 30 April 2013. As with all charter petitions, consideration will be given to the PressBoF charter against the criteria for charter petitions set out on the Privy Council Office’s website. The Government will not submit the cross-party charter while this consideration is ongoing.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 804W

Royal Shakespeare Company

Jonathan Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) what assessment she has made of the economic contribution of the Royal Shakespeare Company; [154438]

(2) what assessment she has made of the economic contribution of the Royal Opera House; [154439]

(3) what assessment she has made of the economic value to the UK of British orchestras. [154440]

Mr Vaizey: The economic contribution of the arts is measured in a number of ways. The Arts Council England recently published an independent report by the Centre for Economics and Business Research that showed arts and culture provided £5.9 billion of Gross Value Added in 2011. The UK's artistic and cultural sectors, combined with many world-class arts organisations remain a vital contributor to wealth generation, tourism and increasing the UK's reputation domestically and internationally for trade and visitors and Government continue to examine the value that this sector makes.

Senior Civil Servants

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what process she plans to put in place for the appointment of a new Permanent Secretary for her Department. [156908]

Hugh Robertson: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is working with the Cabinet Office and CM I Service Commissioners on the recruitment of a new Permanent Secretary, and will conduct the process in line with the Civil Service Commissioners rules.

Ms Harman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport with reference to the announcement of the departure of her Department's Permanent Secretary, when she expects her successor to be appointed. [156909]

Hugh Robertson: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport expects to appoint a new Permanent Secretary in the summer.

Television: Hearing Impairment

Helen Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what assessment she has made of the level of compliance of television broadcasters in respect of their obligations on the subtitling of programmes; and what steps she is taking to improve the quality of subtitling. [157568]

Mr Vaizey: Access to the television for people with hearing loss has vastly improved in the last few decades. 90% of programming broadcast by the Public Service Broadcasters (PSBs)—BBC, ITV, Channel 4, S4C and Channel 5—is required to be subtitled. These broadcasters regularly exceed these obligations, delivering such services for up to 100% of programmes.

Many major non-PSB TV channels are required to subtitle at least 80% of their output. However, there are still many programmes that remain inaccessible due to

3 Jun 2013 : Column 805W

lack of subtitles or signed interpretation, or poor quality subtitles. Ofcom, the regulator with whom the responsibility rests for setting such obligations and monitoring compliance, are now in the process of reviewing issues affecting the quality of live subtitling, from the viewer's perspective, with a view to tackling these in conjunction with leading broadcasters. Following a period of consultation which closes on 25 July, Ofcom will publish a statement on the outcome of this work by early 2014.

Television: Licensing

Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if she will estimate the net savings to her Department in the event that the free TV licence for over 75s were to be withdrawn from those pensioners currently eligible to pay income tax at the (a) higher rate of 40 per cent and (b) additional rate of 45 per cent. [156274]

Steve Webb: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Work and Pensions.

The following estimates are based on Department for Work and Pensions expenditure forecasts combined with information on the tax paid by older people from Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs Survey of Personal Incomes.

AME savings from withdrawing the free TV licence for those aged 75 and over from different categories of tax payers, UK
£ million
 2013-14

(a) higher rate taxpayers (40%)

20

(b) additional rate taxpayers (45%)

<5

Total

20

These estimates assume that the take-up of the free TV licence for those aged 75 and over is distributed equally across the tax bands. The figures are expressed in cash terms and rounded to the nearest £5 million.

Video Games

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what estimate she has made of the total number of hours spent by children and young people playing video games in each of the last 10 years. [156445]

Mr Vaizey: My Department has made no such estimates. However, in their research document published in October 2012, “Children and Parents: Media Use and Attitudes Report”, Ofcom made estimates of the hours of game playing per week by children aged 5-15 as in each of the years from 2008 to 2012 as follows:

 Hours

2008

8.2

2009

7.9

2010

7.7

2011

9.2

2012

8.7

3 Jun 2013 : Column 806W

Communities and Local Government

Portas Pilots

6. Clive Efford: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of progress made by the Portas pilots and their effect on high streets. [157163]

Mr Prisk: This Government believe our high streets need to adapt to changing consumer habits, especially online.

The Portas pilots are testbeds for developing new ideas and are part of a comprehensive approach designed to strengthen local leadership, reform planning and parking policies, help small shops and boost local markets.

Business Premises

Karen Lumley: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps he is taking to speed up the planning process for converting unused office buildings into affordable homes. [156798]

Nick Boles: New permitted development rights to allow change of use from offices to residential without the need to submit a planning application came into force on 30 May 2013. They will provide badly needed homes for local people, regenerate town centres and brownfield land and will make a valuable contribution to easing our national housing shortage.

Disabled Facilities Grants

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many Disabled Facilities Grant applications per household were approved in each local authority in England in the last three years for which figures are available. [156283]

Mr Prisk: The Department for Communities and Local Government funds the Disabled Facilities Grant, which is administered by local authorities in England and provides adaptations to the homes of disabled people to help them to live as independently as possible in their own home.

The Department secured £725 million for the grant in the 2010 spending review for the period 2011-12 to 2014-15 and over the last two years the Government have invested a further £60 million in the Disabled Facilities Grant, bringing the total grant in 2011-12 to £200 million and in 2012-13 to £220 million.

The Department for Communities and Local Government does not collect information on the number of applications approved annually by each local authority, but does collect information on the number of grant adaptations completed each year by local authorities via returns on the Logasnet system. Data for 2009-10 to 2011-12 have been placed in the Library of the House. Data for 2012-13 will not be available until local authorities complete their annual returns in July 2013.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 807W

Employment Agencies

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) which agencies supply staff working in his Department; [157292]

(2) if he will ask all agencies supplying staff to his Department whether such staff are paid at least the living wage. [157294]

Brandon Lewis: The agencies that currently supply staff to the Department are Capita Resourcing Ltd, Michael Page Finance, Square One Resources, SBS (UK), Reed Specialist Recruitment, Premier London Ltd, Manpower UK Ltd and Certes Computing Ltd. All our agency staff for consultancy and contingent labour earn above the London living wage of £8.55 per hour and the UK living wage for outside London of £7.45 per hour.

Use of such staff for short-term or specialist work can be better value for money than hiring staff on permanent contracts. Notwithstanding, I refer the right hon. Member to my answer of 24 April 2013, Official Report, column 982W, on how we have made significant reductions to spending on consultancy costs and contingent labour.

Food Banks

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance his Department provides to local authorities on effective engagement with third sector organisations to ensure the provision and operation of good practice amongst food banks. [156543]

Mr Foster: This Department provides no such guidance to local authorities. Local authorities are quite capable of working effectively with the voluntary and community sector within their local areas—whether on the provision and operation of food banks or on anything else—without top down, heavy-handed instruction from central Government.

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of the level of local authority engagement with food bank providers in order to increase coverage and identify people and families in need of local authority assistance. [156888]

Mr Foster: DCLG has made no assessment of the level of local authority engagement with food bank providers. Government trusts local authorities to make their own decisions with regard to engagement with the voluntary and community sector in their local areas.

Fracking: Planning Permission

Roberta Blackman-Woods: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will consult on new planning guidance in respect of fracking. [156490]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 808W

Nick Boles: The Budget Statement reported that the Government will produce technical planning guidance on shale gas by July 2013 to provide clarity for councils, local residents and firms around planning for shale gas during the important exploration phase for the industry.

In line with the Principles set out by Lord Taylor of Goss Moor, our intention is that this guidance will be web-based. This means it will be a living resource. It will provide people with the opportunity to comment and feedback on its contents, and will make it easier to make any changes in the light of on-going practice and experience.

ICT

Mr Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many (a) computers, (b) mobile telephones, (c) BlackBerrys and (d) other pieces of IT equipment were lost or stolen from his Department in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12 and (iii) 2012-13; and if he will make a statement. [156421]

Brandon Lewis: The information requested for 2012-13 is as follows:

2012-13
ItemLostStolen

Computers

0

5

Mobile telephones

0

0

BlackBerrys

1

5

I refer the hon. Member to my answer to him of 18 December 2012, Official Report, column 694W.

All departmental IT is fully security encrypted.

Land and Property

Stephen Barclay: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on how many occasions each local authority in England has sought a Section 215 notice under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 in each of the last three years. [157134]

Nick Boles: This information is not collected centrally. Local authorities have a discretionary power under section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to deal with derelict land and buildings.

Legal Costs

Sadiq Khan: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the highest day rate paid for external legal advice has been by his Department since 7 May 2010. [157281]

Brandon Lewis: The information requested is not held centrally. Legal advice is provided by counsel from the Attorney-General’s lists of Panel Counsel, who are approved to undertake government work, and whose fees are set under agreed guidelines. Legal advice is also provided by law firms through the Government Procurement Service. Fees may be charged on hourly or daily basis.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 809W

Sadiq Khan: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much his Department has spent on external legal advice from Queen's Counsels (a) between 7 May 2010 and 4 September 2012 and (b) since 4 September 2012. [157283]

Brandon Lewis: The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Costs for external legal advice are recorded against individual barristers or against their chambers. No record is kept if the barrister is a QC at the time of giving advice.

Local Government Finance

Jesse Norman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the spending power per head for (a) Herefordshire, (b) Shropshire, (c) Cheshire West and Chester, (d) Cornwall, (e) Wiltshire and (f) West Berkshire unitary authorities was in each of the last five years. [155932]

Brandon Lewis: Spending power has been calculated only for the years 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 (draft). Spending power and population figures for all local authorities in England have been published on our website at:

2013-14 settlement and draft 2014-15 settlement:

http://www.local.communities.gov.uk/finance/1314/settle.htm

2012-13 settlement:

http://www.local.communities.gov.uk/finance/1213/grant.htm

2011-12 settlement:

http://www.local.communities.gov.uk/finance/1112/grant.htm

Jesse Norman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the average spending power per head for English councils (a) in total and (b) in total without fire authority responsibilities was in each of the last five years. [155933]

Brandon Lewis: Spending power has been calculated only for the years 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14 and 2014-15 (draft). Tables for the average spending power per head and per dwelling for all local authorities in England and for all authorities excluding single purpose fire authorities are shown in the following table(1).

 2011-122012-132013-142014-15

£/head

    

England

1,002

951

950

918

England excluding single purpose fire authorities(2)

974

923

923

891

     

£/dwelling

    

England

2,288

2,186

2,216

2,141

England excluding single purpose fire authorities

2,222

2,121

2,152

2,079

(1) Figures are not comparable between years due to: (a) changes in responsibility for services for some authorities (b) a change in the definition of Spending Power for 2013-14 onwards (c) inclusion of Public Health Grant in 2013-14 and 2014-15 (2) It is not possible to exclude all fire responsibilities, as it is not possible to calculate spending power for authorities with responsibility for both fire and other services in relation to their fire responsibilities alone.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 810W

Every bit of the public sector needs to do its bit to tackle the deficit left by the last Administration, including local government which accounts for a quarter of all public spending.

Mortgages: Government Assistance

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many housing purchases using the Help to Buy Scheme announced in the 2013 Budget have been completed to date. [157284]

Mr Prisk: The Help to Buy: equity loan scheme will help up to 74,000 households purchase a newly built property by March 2016. There has been strong interest in the scheme with over 400 housebuilders registering to participate and purchasers placing over 1,500 reservations in the first month.

Help to Buy: equity loan sales figures fall under the ambit of official statistics, so we will be publishing them in accordance with the UK Statistics Authority's Code of Practice for Statistics.

New Businesses: Ethnic Groups

Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when he plans to publish his Department's report on BME Access to Finance. [157093]

Mr Foster: We aim to publish the report shortly.

Non-domestic Rates

Mark Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) when he expects to publish the regulations relating to property bids as defined in the Business Rates Supplements Act 2009; and what the reasons are for the time taken to publish the regulations; [156667]

(2) whether it remains his policy to introduce property bids as defined in the Business Rates Supplements Act 2009. [156751]

Brandon Lewis: Business Improvement Districts are an important tool for growth and this is already recognised by landlords who are voluntarily contributing to individual projects. In our response to the Portas Review, we committed to explore with industry experts how a formal property owner Business Improvement District scheme may be delivered within the provisions of the Business Rate Supplement Act 2009. Further to that work, we are aiming to issue a consultation paper shortly on how a scheme may work. Any legislation implementing a formal property owner Business Improvement District scheme will be subject to that consultation.

Pay

Mr Raab: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many employees in his Department were paid in excess of (a) £80,000 and (b) £100,000 in (i) 2012 and (ii) 2013. [156749]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 811W

Brandon Lewis: The number of employees in the Department for Communities and Local Government paid in excess of £80,000 and £100,000 per year is provided in the table. I have included comparative figures for 2009, 2010 and 2011 to assist my hon. Friend.

 £80,000 to £100,000£100,000+

2009

25

24

2010

18

19

2011

17

16

2012

14

15

2013

14

12

The figures for 2013 refer to the position as at the end of 30 April and reflect projected annual salary.

The Department's senior pay bill has fallen by 26% in cash terms from 2008-09 to 2011-12. This illustrates the scope for sensible savings in the public sector.

Hilary Benn: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether all directly employed staff in his Department are paid at least the living wage. [157293]

Brandon Lewis: My Department has no employees paid less than the relevant living wage either in London or outside London.

Planning Permission

Roberta Blackman-Woods: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent assessment he has made of the implementation of the National Planning Policy Framework and its effects on the average number of weeks local planning authorities take to decide (a) major and (b) minor planning applications. [154194]

Nick Boles: It is early days, but I refer the hon. Member to my answer of 25 April 2013, Official Report, column 1128W, on the positive changes to plan making, local decision-making and approvals since the National Planning Policy Framework came into effect.

There has been no substantive difference to decision times, but we recognise (before and after the publication of the framework) that some councils are still failing to follow statutory timetables.

Consequently, the Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013 contains provisions to work with councils to ensure they meet statutory deadlines for major planning applications; and we are reforming secondary legislation to take uncontroversial, small-scale applications (such as small extensions and change of use) out of the full planning system.

Roberta Blackman-Woods: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what status is given by planning authorities to draft neighbourhood plans, prior to referendum, in helping to determine planning applications within the neighbourhood planning area. [156209]

Nick Boles: Policies in an emerging neighbourhood plan may be a material consideration depending on the particular circumstances of the case. Until a neighbourhood plan has been through a referendum and becomes part

3 Jun 2013 : Column 812W

of the statutory development plan, any weight it could carry in determining planning applications remains a matter for the decision maker.

Unless material considerations indicate otherwise, decision takers may give weight to relevant policies in emerging plans according to the stage of preparation of the plan; the extent to which there are unresolved objections to relevant policies; and their degree of consistency with the policies in the National Planning Policy Framework.

Planning Permission: Fees and Charges

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of the practice of local authorities charging for the discharging of conditions set in planning consents. [157456]

Nick Boles: Fees for the discharge of planning conditions were introduced in April 2008 under the last Administration. Further guidance on the application of such fees is set out in paragraphs 123 to 131 of the Department's Circular 04/2008: Planning related fees.

The overall fee regime for planning services is kept under review. The Department is updating its guidance on the use of conditions as part of Lord Taylor's review of planning guidance.

Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012

Hazel Blears: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps his Department is taking to implement the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 in its procurement procedures; and what guidance he has given to his Department's executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies on implementation of that Act. [154526]

Brandon Lewis: My Department has received central guidance from Cabinet Office in a Procurement Policy Note (PPN10/12) dated 20 December 2012, has updated its internal guidance to ensure that economic, social and environmental considerations are considered and included within business cases prior to commencement of relevant procurements, and is rolling out training and awareness sessions. The central procurement policy note was issued to my Department's arm's length bodies on 4 January 2013.

Religious Hatred

Mr Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether he plans to continue support for the Tell Mama national project to support victims of anti-Muslim prejudice beyond October 2013. [157478]

Mr Foster: We have given the Tell Mama project £374,564 of funding to establish itself as a sustainable community organisation. I have been very impressed by the progress they have made in their first year of operation to monitor anti-Muslim hatred, increase reporting and ensure victims receive support. I am confident that they will be able to build on the financial foundation we provided and continue to provide this service to the community.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 813W

Reservoirs: West Yorkshire

Jason McCartney: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether the Butterley Reservoir Spillway, Marsden will remain a grade II listed building when Yorkshire Water's proposed spillway works goes ahead. [156681]

Nick Boles: I cannot comment on the specific case as it may come before the Secretary of State for a decision at a later date. However, I can respond in general terms.

Any works to a listed building which will affect its special architectural or historic interest will require listed building consent. In determining such applications local planning authorities are required to take account of national planning policy. This states that substantial harm to or total loss of a grade II listed building should be exceptional.

A building will remain listed at the commencement of any works, unless, after full assessment, it is decided by the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport that it has lost its special interest.

Tenancy Deposit Schemes

Pamela Nash: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many applications to the tenancy deposit protection schemes were made by (a) landlords and (b) tenants; and how many deposits were subsequently approved and paid back in (i) Wales, (ii) England, (iii) Scotland, (iv) Northern Ireland and (v) the UK in each year since 2007. [156850]

Mr Prisk: In England and Wales, more than 7 million deposits have been protected under the tenancy deposit protection schemes authorised by my Department since their launch in 2007 up to the end of March 2013. During this time there have been 91,802 cases dealt with by the free alternative resolution service offered by each of the schemes. Both parties have to agree to use this service or it is open to either party to choose to have the case heard in court instead. The disputed amount of the deposit is paid back in full, apportioned between the landlord and tenant according to the decision made by an independent adjudicator.

The schemes that operate in Scotland and Northern Ireland are the responsibility of the devolved authorities.

Training

Priti Patel: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many officials in (a) his Department and (b) the non-departmental public bodies for which he is responsible enrolled in publicly-funded training courses in each of the last five years; what the total cost has been of such courses; and what the monetary value was of the 10 highest training course fees in each such year. [155423]

Brandon Lewis: This Government has taken a series of steps to save taxpayers' money and improve the overall quality of the training provision.

Civil Service Learning was established in April 2011 in response to a wide ranging review of the delivery of training across the civil service. The new model is delivering

3 Jun 2013 : Column 814W

better value out of its investment in training, reducing duplication in procurement and making greater use of the external market to provide the training which the civil service requires.

The following table shows spending on the category 'training' over the five years requested. The dip in spending in 2011-12 was a consequence of the transition from the old regime to Civil Service Learning.

 Investment in training (£)

2008-09

2,080,738

2009-10

2,309,137

2010-11

1,312,688

2011-12

377,521

2012-13

767,549

The number of departmental staff who enrolled to undertake publicly funded courses is provided for years 2011-12 and 2012-13 only as records of staff numbers were not centrally held before this time.

 Number of staff enrolled for training courses

2011-12

260

2012-13

1,883

The monetary value of the 10 highest training course fees for years 2011-12 and 2012-13 is:

 Course Name£

2011-12

Whitehall in Government programme

6,500

 

ITIL V3 Foundation Course

6,480

 

National School of Government—Introductory Course for Lawyers

5,280

 

Windows Server Courses (4 course passport)

4,000

 

National School of Government—Legal Training

3,360

 

Introduction to Operational Research

3,125

 

SAP Administration Course

3,000

 

Netbackup7.0 for UNIX

2,900

 

BPP Professional Skills Course (legal training)

2,594

 

SAP Java Training

2,500

   

2012-13

Major Projects Leadership Academy—Said Oxford Business School(1)

30,000

 

Legal Practice Course

13,326

 

Leading to Transform

5,211

 

SAP Business Warehouse (Implementation Role)

6,108

 

SAP Business Warehouse (Implementation Role)

5,148

 

Senior Leaders Scheme Cohort 1

5,187

 

Whitehall in Government programme

4,500

 

SAP TBW10 BW-Enterprise Data Warehousing

2,210

 

SQL Server 2008: A comprehensive Hands-On Introduction

2,144

 

BPC430 SAP Business Objects Planning and Consolidation

2,080

(1) The Major Projects Leadership Academy builds the skills of senior project leaders across Government to deliver complex projects, to help save taxpayers' money from complex projects going over-budget and behind schedule and to reduce the over-reliance on expensive external consultancy. https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/managing-major-projects-more-effectively Note: Figures are not centrally held for the Department's arm's length bodies.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 815W

Wind Power: Planning Permission

Dan Rogerson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many planning applications for wind turbines have been overturned on appeal where the decision has been taken by the Secretary of State in (a) Cornwall and (b) England in each year since 2008. [156563]

Mr Prisk [holding answer 21 May 2013]: In Cornwall, since 2008, no planning applications for a wind turbine have been overturned on appeal by the Secretary of State.

In England, since 2008, 11 planning applications for wind turbines have been overturned on appeal by the Secretary of State.

 CornwallEngland

2008

0

0

2009

0

6

2010

0

3

2011

0

2

2012

0

0

2013

0

0

Scotland

Mr David Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what legislation his Department has sponsored which has devolved powers to the Scottish Parliament and powers within such legislation since 1998. [156224]

David Mundell: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Scotland Office.

The Scotland Office is responsible for maintaining and strengthening the devolution settlement; together with lead policy Departments we have delivered a programme of Scotland Act orders that have provided additional powers to the Scottish Parliament, as well as delivering the Scotland Act 2012, which enhanced the devolution settlement and provided the largest transfer of financial responsibility since 1999.

Further devolution to the Scottish Parliament is principally achieved by way of amendments to schedules 4 and 5 of the Act. Since 1998 the following changes to those schedules have been made. These are presented in summary form.

Amendments to schedule 4 of the Scotland Act 1998

Power to modify the Scotland Act 1998 regarding financial assistance for opposition parties in the Scottish Parliament.

Powers to modify certain provisions of the Scotland Act 1998 requiring any sum to be payable out of the Scottish Consolidated Fund.

Power to provide that proceedings brought in a court or tribunal against a member of the Scottish Government under the Scotland Act 1998 on human rights grounds have to be brought before the end of a limitation period (since repealed by Scotland Act 2012).

Amendments to schedule 5 of the Scotland Act 1998

Political parties

The making of payments to any political party for the purpose of assisting members of the Parliament to perform their parliamentary duties.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 816W

Referendum

A power to allow the Scottish Parliament to conduct a referendum on the independence of Scotland from the rest of the United Kingdom, subject to certain conditions.

Financial and economic matters

Powers to set a rate of income tax to be paid by Scottish taxpayers, and taxes in relation to land transactions and landfill.

Home affairs

The interception of any communication made to or by a person detained at a place of detention.

The regulation of air weapons.

Trade and industry

Powers in relation to business associations which are social landlords, including in relation to winding up proceedings and procedures giving protection from creditors.

Powers to provide financial assistance for the provision of services (other than postal services and services relating to money or postal orders) to be provided from public post offices.

Transport

Powers to impose requirements on Scottish public authorities about the preparation and submission of strategies relating to the provision of rail services.

Powers to transfer functions of passenger transport executives or passenger transport authorities relating to rail services, and the allocation of such functions among relevant authorities.

The promotion and construction of railways which start, end and remain in Scotland.

Power to impose requirements on Scottish public authorities about the preparation and submission of strategies relating to the provision of air services.

Social security

Powers to provide occasional financial or other assistance to or in respect of individuals for the purposes of meeting an immediate short-term need, arising out of exceptional services, to avoid risk to the individual’s well-being, or enabling qualifying individuals to establish or maintain a settled home.

Employment

Fire safety on construction sites and on certain premises, including those concerned in the manufacture or storage of chemicals, explosives or flammable materials.

Amendment to part 1 of the Scotland Act 1998

Elections

Power to make provision as to the conduct of elections for membership of the Scottish Parliament, and the questioning of such an election and the consequences of irregularities. Made by the Scotland Act 2012 and yet to be brought into force.


Treasury

Arck

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the effects of the collapse of Arck LLP on customers of Yorkshire Bank. [156830]

Sajid Javid: Under the Government's new framework for financial regulation, prudential regulation of deposit takers is the responsibility of the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA). It is the role of the PRA to assess the impact of the insolvency of Arck LLP on Yorkshire Bank and its customers.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 817W

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps he is taking to ensure that a full investigation is carried out into the collapse of Arck LLP and an assessment is made of the liability of Yorkshire Bank. [156831]

Greg Clark: The Serious Fraud Office is currently investigating allegations of serious fraud involving investments made in Arck LLP, HD Administrators LLP, and other related companies.

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) is investigating a number of complaints in relation to Yorkshire Bank's role as custodian to Arck LLP. It is the role of the FOS to determine the level of detriment suffered by individual investors as a result of any regulatory breaches made by Yorkshire Bank.

The Government will be closely following the outcome of these investigations.

Banks: Loans

Mr Thomas: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what progress he has made in his discussions with banks about publishing their lending data by postcode; and if he will make a statement; [156990]

(2) if he will request the Financial Conduct Authority to conduct detailed scrutiny of recent levels of lending by UK banks in areas of deprivation; and if he will make a statement. [157001]

Greg Clark: The Financial Services Act 2012 provides the FCA with a requirement to advance its objective of promoting effective competition in the interest of consumers. In particular, the FCA may have regard to the ease with which consumers who may wish to use financial services, including in areas of social and economic deprivation, can access them.

The Government are working with the industry—through the British Bankers Association (BBA) and other interested parties-to secure a commitment from the banks that they will publish postcode-level lending data by institution. If it is not possible to reach a satisfactory industry led agreement, the Government will introduce amendments to the Banking Reform Bill to ensure that the data are published.

Banks: Pay

Mr Meacher: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the level of bonuses was in each of the last five years at each of the top five UK banks. [155895]

Greg Clark: This information is not held centrally. Banks have been required to publish aggregate data on bonuses since the introduction of the Capital Requirements Directive (CRD3) in 2010. These prudential “Pillar 3” disclosures concern senior management and risk-taking staff (code staff), and are publicly available on the website of each bank.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 818W

Charity Research Support Fund

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will continue to support the Charity Research Support Fund for the spending review period 2015-16. [157287]

Sajid Javid: The Chancellor of the Exchequer will present the outcome of the spending review to the House on 26 June.

Disclosure of Information

Mr Meacher: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish details of all cases of whistleblowing currently being investigated by his Department; how many such cases are not being investigated; and for what reason historical cases of offshore tax evasion have only recently been investigated. [156266]

Mr Gauke: HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) may investigate cases where it is alleged that information held by HMRC that identifies a person has been unlawfully disclosed by a Revenue and Customs official. HMRC does not investigate cases where it is clear that whistleblowers make a lawful disclosure using the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998.

The timing of any tax evasion investigation is dependent on when HMRC receives information that indicates suspicions that tax evasion has taken place. In relation to the major direct taxes there are timescales for the submission of relevant information to HMRC and those deadlines must have been passed before any investigation can be started.

Mr Meacher: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will conduct an inquiry into the recent claims made that officials in his Department used powers under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 to discover the identity of a departmental whistleblower; whether such an action would be in breach of his Department's data protection guidelines; and if, at the end of such an inquiry, he will name the individuals responsible and bring forward a prosecution under the Public Disclosure Act 2012. [156267]

Mr Gauke: HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) may investigate cases where it is alleged that information held by HMRC that identifies a person has been unlawfully disclosed by a Revenue and Customs official. HMRC does not investigate cases where it is clear that whistleblowers make a lawful disclosure using the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998.

HMRC has assured me that when using the powers granted under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA), HMRC properly addresses the requirements of both necessity and proportionality and works within the established safeguards set out in the legislation. HMRC's use of RIPA powers is monitored by annual inspections by the Interception of Communications Commissioners Office and by the Office of the Surveillance Commissioners.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 819W

Electricity Generation

Dr Whitehead: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what his estimate is of the proportion of the amount specified for the levy control framework in 2020 that will be allocated (a) to continuing funding of Renewables Obligation and Contract for Difference commitments for existing low carbon plant and (b) to new entrants. [156382]

Michael Fallon: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

DECC's estimates do not explicitly differentiate between existing plant and new entrants. However, by comparing current expenditure with modelled spend in 2020-21, it is possible to provide an indication of their respective shares of the budget.

Renewables Obligation spend in 2012-13 was around £1.9 billion (2011-12 prices).

The modelling underpinning the January 2013 Energy Bill Impact Assessment suggests that total spending on the Renewables Obligation and Contracts for Difference will be approximately £6.4 billion in 2020-21 (excluding small-scale Feed-in-Tariffs), an increase of approximately £4.5 billion (2011-12 prices). We would expect all of this additional spend to support new low-carbon plant.

Financial Services

Alun Cairns: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent representations his Department has received on the Connaught Income Series 1 Fund; and what consideration he has given to role of the Financial Conduct Authority in respect of that fund. [155224]

Greg Clark: Treasury Ministers and officials receive regular correspondence on a wide range of issues. We cannot disclose details of specific representations.

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has kept HM Treasury officials informed about developments in relation to the failure of the fund. However, the fund itself and many of the parties involved are not regulated by the FCA.

Green Investment Bank

Mark Lazarowicz: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will allow the Green Investment Bank access to capital markets. [156495]

Michael Fallon: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

The Green Investment Bank has been allocated £3 billion for the period to March 2015. Decisions about its funding requirements for the 2015-16 period will be taken in due course. The question of whether or not the bank should be allowed to borrow funds from the capital markets remains under consideration.

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Mrs Gillan: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the National Audit Office’s report on HS2 and its identification of a £3.3 billion shortfall. [156701]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 820W

Danny Alexander: The Department for Transport will respond to the Public Accounts Committee in the usual way once the committee has examined the National Audit Office report. (HM Treasury has made no assessment of the National Audit Office report.)

Local Government: Rural Areas

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what role city deals will play in helping rural areas; and if he will make a statement. [157250]

Greg Clark: In July, 2012 the Government announced city deals with the eight core cities. City deals do not solely focus on their principal urban areas and we expect the benefits to be shared across the cities' wider economic functional area.

More generally, the Government confirmed on 18 March in their response to Lord Heseltine's report "No Stone Unturned in pursuit of Growth" that building on the experience of city deals it will be negotiating "Growth Deals" with all 39 Local Enterprise Partnerships to enter into force in April 2015. This will ensure that every part of England is able to share in the benefits of our decentralising approach, for which city deals are the trailblazers.

London Finance Commission

Dr Offord: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what discussions he has had with the Mayor of London on the recent report to him made by the London Finance Commission. [156609]

Danny Alexander: The Chancellor of the Exchequer, along with other Treasury ministers, will carefully consider the recommendations of the London Finance Commission.

Mortgages: Government Assistance

Ann McKechin: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer with reference to the answer of 25 April 2013, Official Report, columns 1148-9W, on mortgages: Government assistance, if he will confirm whether or not non-EU citizens will be barred from applying for the mortgage guarantee scheme. [156259]

Sajid Javid: The mortgage guarantee scheme is a new scheme, and the Government need to get the design right. Details on the Help to Buy: mortgage guarantee scheme will be announced in due course by HM Treasury.

John Healey: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer with reference to Table 2.1 of the Budget 2013, Red Book, HC 1033, March 2013, for what reasons the equity loan component of Help to Buy is classed as a transaction and so does not count towards public sector net borrowing; whether an independent body has confirmed such an assessment; and if he will place in the Library a copy of any such confirmation. [157096]

Sajid Javid: The Help to Buy equity loan scheme provides buyers with a maximum 20% equity loan, which they can use to purchase a new build home worth up to £600,000. The loan will be interest free for the first five years and repayable once the home is sold or after 25 years.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 821W

The Office for National Statistics has confirmed that the Government's previous equity loan scheme (FirstBuy) is a financial transaction and that the Help to Buy: equity loan scheme should be treated in the same way.

Natural Capital Committee

Dr Offord: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment his Department has made of the value of extending the establishment of the Natural Capital Committee. [155271]

Richard Benyon: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

The Natural Capital Committee (NCC) is an independent Committee that reports to the Economic Affairs Committee. The NCC is due to be formally reviewed by the Government, including consideration of the value of extending the Committee's term, by the end of 2014.

Non-domestic Rates

Graham Jones: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether charging for the use of a car park which was originally designated as free to use affects the rateable value of the land. [156312]

Brandon Lewis: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for Communities and Local Government.

When valuing a car park at the antecedent valuation date, the Valuation Office Agency has regard to the levels of charges/free parking generally available in the locality, the size of the car park and other physical factors. More information can be found at:

http://www.voa.gov.uk/corporate/Publications/Manuals/RatingManual/RatingManualVolume5/sect200/rat-man-vol5-s200-pn1-2010.html

The rating assessment of a property is an assessment of its open market rental value as at a set date. For the current rating lists this is 1 April 2008 (antecedent valuation date).

Whether a specific occupier chooses to charge or not does not affect the rental value of a car park and therefore would not alter the assessment of that property.

Notwithstanding, physical changes to a car park may entail “material changes of

circumstance” which may or may not affect the valuation. However, each case will depend on its individual circumstances. Further guidance can be found at:

http://www.voa.gov.uk/corporate/publications/Manuals/RatingManual/RatingManualVolume2/sect5/b-rat-man-vol2-s5.html

Pay

Mr Bain: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 15 May 2013, Official Report, column 279W, on income tax, what estimate he has made of the number of households containing children and with only one adult earning above the threshold for income tax who will earn above £150,000 in 2013 and in the 2014 financial year. [156702]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 822W

Mr Gauke: Due to the limitations in survey data for high-income households, this information is not available.

Mr Bain: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 15 May 2013, Official Report, column 279W, on income tax, what estimate he has made of the number of households containing children and with two adults each earning above the threshold for income tax who will both earn above £150,000 in 2013 and in the 2014 financial year. [156703]

Mr Gauke: Due to the limitations in survey data for high-income households, this information is not available.

PAYE

Mr Byrne: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many businesses will be enrolled on real time information by October 2013. [157402]

Mr Gauke: HMRC expect that the vast majority of PAYE schemes will be reporting PAYE in real time by October 2013.

A small number of schemes, such as care and support employers and employers with a religious objection to filing electronically will not start reporting PAYE Real Time Information until April 2014.

Personnel Management

Priti Patel: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many officials in his Department were employed in human resources functions in each of the last five years; at what grades such staff were employed; and what the total cost of his Department’s human resources functions was. [156677]

Sajid Javid: The information requested can be found in the following table which shows staff (full-time equivalents) and costs for each financial year as at 31 March.

 Number of staffCost (£000)Deputy directorRange ERange DRange CRange B

2008-09

43

3,900

1

14

7

14

7

2009-10

45

3,300

1

14

4

12

12

2010-11

32

2,100

1

9

4

10

8

2011-12

25

1,900

1

7

4

6

7

2012-13

22

1,700

1

7

4

5

5

Information is collected centrally on HR headcount and cost on a quarterly basis as part of the programme tracking for Next Generation HR. Cost savings for the Next Generation HR programme across Whitehall Departments is set against a baseline of 2008-09. HR activities that should be counted fall within the definition provided by the Cabinet Office publication Common Areas of Spend which can be found on the following website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/common-areas-of-spend-data-definitions

3 Jun 2013 : Column 823W

Private Equity

Mr Meacher: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will set up an inquiry into how private equity firms marked their assets; and whether they misused fee waivers in order to avoid tax. [156316]

Mr Gauke: The Government are fully committed to tackling tax avoidance, taking all necessary steps to protect the Exchequer. HMRC regularly reviews all areas of the tax system to identify where aggressive tax avoidance is taking place.

Revenue and Customs

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer for what reason members of the public are liable for the cost of random enquiries carried out by HM Revenue and Customs into their tax affairs when they are not found to be at fault; and if he will make a statement. [157507]

Mr Gauke: HMRC is responsible for the collection and management of the taxes it administers. HMRC carries out checks into returns to make sure that taxpayers are paying the right amount of tax at the right time and receiving the right allowances and tax reliefs. HMRC does not reimburse the normal day-to-day costs people incur in complying with their legal obligations. This includes the cost of normal communications, of clarifying or verifying matters, and preparing returns and the costs arising from inquiries and interventions. A random inquiry is just like any other compliance check and is undertaken in a way proportionate to the risks addressed. Inquiries are closed down promptly if no additional tax is due. A taxpayer can ask a Tribunal for an inquiry to be closed if they believe it is kept open too long.

Scotland

Mr David Hamilton: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the legislation his Department has sponsored which has devolved powers to the Scottish Parliament and powers within such legislation since 1998. [156236]

David Mundell: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Scotland Office.

The Scotland Office is responsible for maintaining and strengthening the devolution settlement; together with lead policy Departments we have delivered a programme of Scotland Act orders that have provided additional powers to the Scottish Parliament, as well as delivering the Scotland Act 2012, which enhanced the devolution settlement and provided the largest transfer of financial responsibility since 1999.

Further devolution to the Scottish Parliament is principally achieved by way of amendments to schedules 4 and 5 of the Act. Since 1998 the following changes to those schedules have been made. These are presented in summary form.

Amendments to schedule 4 of the Scotland Act 1998

Power to modify the Scotland Act 1998 regarding financial assistance for opposition parties in the Scottish Parliament.

Powers to modify certain provisions of the Scotland Act 1998 requiring any sum to be payable out of the Scottish Consolidated Fund.

3 Jun 2013 : Column 824W

Power to provide that proceedings brought in a court or tribunal against a member of the Scottish Government under the Scotland Act 1998 on human rights grounds have to be brought before the end of a limitation period (since repealed by Scotland Act 2012).

Amendments to schedule 5 of the Scotland Act 1998

Political parties

The making of payments to any political party for the purpose of assisting members of the Parliament to perform their parliamentary duties.

Referendum

A power to allow the Scottish Parliament to conduct a referendum on the independence of Scotland from the rest of the United Kingdom, subject to certain conditions.

Financial and economic matters

Powers to set a rate of income tax to be paid by Scottish taxpayers, and taxes in relation to land transactions and landfill.

Home affairs

The interception of any communication made to or by a person detained at a place of detention.

The regulation of air weapons.

Trade and industry

Powers in relation to business associations which are social landlords, including in relation to winding up proceedings and procedures giving protection from creditors.

Powers to provide financial assistance for the provision of services (other than postal services and services relating to money or postal orders) to be provided from public post offices.

Transport

Powers to impose requirements on Scottish public authorities about the preparation and submission of strategies relating to the provision of rail services.

Powers to transfer functions of passenger transport executives or passenger transport authorities relating to rail services, and the allocation of such functions among relevant authorities.

The promotion and construction of railways which start, end and remain in Scotland.

Power to impose requirements on Scottish public authorities about the preparation and submission of strategies relating to the provision of air services.

Social security

Powers to provide occasional financial or other assistance to or in respect of individuals for the purposes of meeting an immediate short-term need, arising out of exceptional services, to avoid risk to the individual’s well-being, or enabling qualifying individuals to establish or maintain a settled home.

Employment

Fire safety on construction sites and on certain premises, including those concerned in the manufacture or storage of chemicals, explosives or flammable materials.

Amendment to part 1 of the Scotland Act 1998

Elections

Power to make provision as to the conduct of elections for membership of the Scottish Parliament, and the questioning of such an election and the consequences of irregularities. Made by the Scotland Act 2012 and yet to be brought into force.

Tax Allowances: Married People

Andrew Griffiths: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what estimate he has made of the potential financial effect on (a) married couples with children and (b) married couples without children of allowing the transfer of personal allowances between married couples; [157010]

3 Jun 2013 : Column 825W

(2) what estimate he has made of the cost of making the personal allowance transferable between couples; [156971]

(3) what estimate he has made of the proportion of people who are married who would benefit from a transferable personal tax allowance; and if he will make a statement. [156970]

Mr Gauke: The Government are committed to recognising marriage in the tax and benefit system and will bring forward proposals in due course.

The financial effect on recipients, the cost and the number of beneficiaries will depend on the final policy design.

Taxation: Multinational Companies

Mr Tom Clarke: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what discussions he has had with other EU Finance Ministers to ensure that multi national corporations do not abuse financial regulations in minimising their tax obligations. [156600]

Mr Gauke: The Chancellor of the Exchequer regularly meets with other EU Finance Ministers and a wide range of issues are discussed. As was the case with previous Administrations, it is not the Government’s practice to provide details of such meetings.

Taxation: Retail Trade

Anas Sarwar: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what steps his Department is taking to ensure a level playing field in tax payments for high street and online retail businesses. [157289]

Mr Gauke: The UK Government have led the call for international action to address the issue of corporate tax base erosion and profit shifting by multinationals, including in relation to the taxation of digital goods and services. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has been tasked with identifying possible options for reform and will be presenting an action plan to the G20 in July this year.

As regards VAT, sales made over the internet are treated in exactly the same way as offline sales. Sales made by non-VAT registered retailers over the internet are not liable to VAT, but VAT-registered online sellers are obliged to charge and account for VAT in the same way as offline businesses.

Tobacco: Smuggling

Stephen Williams: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much his Department has spent on salaries for full-time equivalent staff allocated to tackling tobacco smuggling (a) in total, (b) engaged in detection, (c) engaged in investigations and (d) working on intelligence matters in the latest year for which information is available. [157435]

Sajid Javid: I regret that it is not possible to provide a detailed breakdown of the total HM Revenue and Customs spent on salaries for full time equivalent staff allocated to tackling tobacco smuggling in the way

3 Jun 2013 : Column 826W

requested. To the extent that we are able to break down expenditure on tobacco related activity, this is detailed as follows.

HMRC ActivitySalary cost 2012-13 (£)

Investigation (includes detection, criminal investigation, and specialist civil investigation)

23,654,527

Risk and Intelligence

8,446,533

Other

3,633,330

Total

35,734,390

Note: Figures are provisional.

Travel

Priti Patel: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many officials in (a) his Department and (b) the non-departmental public bodies for which he is responsible claimed reimbursement for travel subsistence expenses in each of the last five years; what the total cost was of such claims; and what the monetary value was of the 20 highest subsistence claims in each such year. [155417]

Sajid Javid: The total number of officials who have claimed reimbursement for travel, subsistence and expenses during the past five years within the Department and its non departmental bodies was 1,850; the total cost was £2,978,469. The following table provides a breakdown of these costs by financial year.

All staff must refer to the Department's travel and subsistence guidance when making expense claims, which is in place to ensure that public money and other resources are used properly and efficiently. The Treasury's rules on travel and expenses spending were tightened in July 2010 by the Chancellor and the Permanent Secretary.

Financial yearReimbursement claimed (£)

2008-09

625,412

2009-10

688,235

2010-11

585,308

2011-12

557,237

2012-13

522,277

The 20 highest claims in each year can be found in the following table.

 Highest claims (£)

2008-09

5,729.53

 

3,465.76

 

3,285.00

 

3,156.08

 

3,006.56

 

2,888.64

 

2,792.03

 

2,526.90

 

2,014.89

 

1,797.90

 

1,724.07

 

1,723.82

 

1,708.75

 

1,645.62

 

1,606.53

 

1,574.18

3 Jun 2013 : Column 827W

 

1,554.77

 

1,535.94

 

1,506.44

 

1,499.78

Total

46,743.19

  

2009-10

5,061.30

 

4,567.62

 

4,023.29

 

3,827.45

 

3,717.04

 

3,461.88

 

3,445.92

 

3,387.00

 

3,088.01

 

2,938.64

 

2,721.25

 

2,516.76

 

2,483.20

 

2,416.53

 

2,391.14

 

2,265.66

 

2,229.04

 

2,159.26

 

2,065.00

 

2,037.44

Total

50,546.34

  

2010-11

3,051.16

 

3,051.16

 

2,844.38

 

2,805.98

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,667.22

 

2,162.65

 

2,096.55

 

1,961.54

 

1,961.54

 

1,961.54

 

1,961.54

 

1,937.11

Total

46,748.97

  

2011-12

4,683.00

 

4,683.00

 

2,900.25

 

2,900.25

 

2,900.25

3 Jun 2013 : Column 828W

 

2,900.25

 

2,550.09

 

2,550.09

 

2,550.09

 

2,462.62

 

2,462.62

 

2,084.45

 

2,084.45

 

2,081.69

 

2,028.41

 

1,821.65

 

1,784.84

 

1,784.84

 

1,784.84

 

1,776.84

Total

50,774.52

  

2012-13

4,958.10

 

2,789.11

 

2,569.29

 

2,192.42

 

2,192.42

 

2,192.42

 

2,043.08

 

1,970.40

 

1,934.00

 

1,923.52

 

1,912.58

 

1,892.78

 

1,891.99

 

1,830.88

 

1,830.88

 

1,830.88

 

1,802.78

 

1,630.85

 

1,630.85

 

1,630.85

Total

42,650.08

Note: The Royal Mint Advisory Committee has been excluded from the data for NDPBs as the Committee is not funded by the Treasury.

VAT: High Speed 2 Railway Line

Mrs Gillan: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the HS2 project will be subject to VAT; and if he will make a statement. [156699]

Danny Alexander: HM Revenue and Customs will determine whether HS2 Ltd can reclaim VAT on relevant future expenditure in accordance with the usual rules for VAT recovery.

Welfare Tax Credits

Mr Bain: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 15 May 2013, Official Report, column 279W, on income tax, what estimate he

3 Jun 2013 : Column 829W

has made of the number of households containing children and with only one adult earning above the threshold for income tax who will

(a)

be in receipt of tax credits and

(b)

not be in receipt of tax credits in the (i) current and (ii) 2014 financial year. [156719]

Mr Gauke: The following table gives the number of households containing children, and only one adult earning above the personal allowance, who are and are not in receipt of working or child tax credits. This includes households with both single and couple parents.

 2013-14 (personal allowance = £9,440)2014-15 (personal allowance = £10,000)

Not in receipt of tax credits

1,289,000

1,345,000

In receipt of tax credits

1,641,000

1,588,000

All

2,931,000

2,963,000

Figures are rounded to the nearest thousand; totals may not sum due to rounding. HM Treasury’s modelling

3 Jun 2013 : Column 830W

assumes full take of the benefits to which an individual is entitled; therefore, all households with children with incomes below the personal allowance are entitled to child tax credits.

Health

Abortion: Young People

Mr Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many and what proportion of abortions were performed on (a) children under 13 years old, (b) 13 to 15 years olds and (c) 16 to 18 year olds in the smallest geographical NHS area for which information is available in (i) 2012, (ii) 2010 and (iii) 2008. [156534]

Anna Soubry: Data are set out in the following tables. Data for 2012 are not yet available; data for 2011 (the most recent published) have been shown instead.

Abortions: totals, rates and percentages, by age groups under 19 and strategic health authority 2008
  Total abortionsPercentages of total
  Under 1313 to 1516 to 18Total allUnder 1313 to 1516 to 18All ages

England and Wales

 

7

4,106

26,541

195,296

0

2

14

100

          

England

 

7

3,877

25,115

186,218

0

2

13

100

 

North East

1

240

1,240

7,482

0

3

17

100

 

North West

0

608

3,875

25,019

0

2

15

100

 

Yorkshire and the Humber

1

478

2,583

16,699

0

3

15

100

 

East Midlands

1

314

1,906

12,409

0

3

15

100

 

West Midlands

0

464

3,037

20,476

0

2

15

100

 

East of England

1

312

2,288

16,460

0

2

14

100

 

London

3

603

4,587

48,679

0

1

9

100

 

South East Coast

0

281

1,899

13,248

0

2

14

100

 

South Central

0

250

1,537

11,934

0

2

13

100

 

South West

0

327

2,163

13,812

0

2

16

100

Wales

 

0

229

1,426

9,078

0

3

16

100

Abortions: totals, rates and percentages, by age groups under 19 and strategic health authority 2010
  Total abortionsPercentages of total
  Under 1313 to 1516 to 18Total allUnder 1313 to 1516 to 18All ages

England and Wales

 

2

3,716

22,870

189,574

0

2

12

100

          

England

 

2

3,499

21,664

180,942

0

2

12

100

 

North East

1

217

1,016

7,029

0

3

14

100

 

North West

0

553

3,395

24,933

0

2

14

100

 

Yorkshire and the Humber

1

407

2,130

15,547

0

3

14

100

 

East Midlands

0

291

1,551

11,869

0

2

13

100

 

West Midlands

0

455

2,576

20,331

0

2

13

100

 

East of England

0

313

2,155

16,829

0

2

13

100

 

London

0

502

3,911

46,686

0

1

8

100

 

South East Coast

0

255

1,783

13,200

0

2

14

100

 

South Central

0

194

1,301

11,533

0

2

11

100

 

South West

0

312

1,846

12,985

0

2

14

100

Wales

 

0

217

1,206

8,632

0

3

14

100