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NATIONAL PARK AUTHORITIES, WALES

Lord Gainford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Lucas: My right honourable Friend the Secretary of State for Wales has today announced in

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another place that he has issued advice to the local authorities in Wales about the national park authorities which he intends to establish for the three national parks in Wales should the Environment Bill receive Royal Assent. A copy of this advice has been placed in the Library of this House.

The advice also covers the interaction between the national park provisions in the Local Government (Wales) Act 1994 and the Environment Bill, and the effect that local government reorganisation will have on the process of establishing Welsh national park authorities.

Further guidance will be issued once the Environment Bill is enacted, and comments are being sought from the local authorities and other bodies in the interim.

The national park authorities in Wales will operate with the same purposes and duties, and with the same relationship towards their constituent local authorities as those in England.

SCIENCE BUDGET

Lord Gainford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What is the distribution of the Science Budget in 1995–96.

The Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Earl Howe): My right honourable Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and the Director General of Research Councils have discussed the allocations and have

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decided that, subject to parliamentary approval of the Supply Estimates in due course, the Science Budget of £1,281.675 million should be allocated as follows:

Allocations for 1995–96 £ million
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council 161.631
Economic and Social Research Council 61,232
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council 365,702
Medical Research Council 277.809
Natural Environment Research Council 155,483
Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council 196,367
Council for the Central Laboratory of the Research Councils 1,500
Additional Funding for LINK schemes (to be allocated to Research Councils in due course 3,000
Royal Society 20,786
Royal Academy of Engineering 2,617
OST initiatives 2,250
Research Council's Pension Scheme 33,298
Total 1,281.675

In making these allocations, my right honourable friend needs to ensure that momentum is maintained with implementing the Science, Engineering and Technology White Paper Realising Our Potential. He has, therefore, decided that some 5 per cent. of the Science Budget should be targeted to priority initiatives aimed specifically at taking White Paper issues forward. Further details are set out in the paper Allocation of the Science Budget 1995–96, copies of which have been placed in the Library of the House.

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