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The Advocate-General for Scotland (Lord Wallace of Tankerness): Cornwall is subject to Acts of the UK Parliament. Except for matters that are geographically limited, such as Private Acts of Parliament for infrastructure works, Acts of Parliament apply in Cornwall as they do throughout England. In particular, there is no power of veto in Cornwall in relation to the passing or application of Acts of the UK Parliament.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the nature and extent of counselling currently offered to women considering an abortion, including repeat abortions; and what plans they have to review the current provision.[HL10663]
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answers by Lord Howell of Guildford and Baroness Verma on 28 June (WA 383) and by Earl Howe on 29 June (WA 419), whether and what financial support provided to Indian health services has been used to procure ultrasound equipment; and whether that equipment has been used to support abortion on the grounds of sex.[HL10666]
Lord Taylor of Holbeach: Over 60,000 women die every year in India due to complications of pregnancy and childbirth. The British Government provide support to the health programmes of three poor states (Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Orissa) to improve the quality of services for maternal and newborn healthcare to reduce this unnecessary and tragic burden. Part of this support
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Through the Government of India's Reproductive and Child Health Programme the British Government support the Indian Government's efforts to implement their Pre-Conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques Regulation Act (PC&PNDT) which outlaws the practice of sex-selective abortion. For example, Madhya Pradesh is implementing enhanced monitoring of all use of ultrasound to ensure that it is not used for this purpose.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their assessment of the dental services on each Royal Air Force station in the United Kingdom; and whether they will place any relevant reports in the Library of the House.[HL10613]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Lord Astor of Hever): As part of the Joint Medical Command (JMC), the Defence Dental Service (DDS) is responsible for the provision of dental support to the Royal Air Force (RAF). Stations with a resident population in excess of 500 personnel have a dedicated team of RAF dental branch professionals who deliver a comprehensive service to meet the needs of the RAF. Where there are insufficient personnel to justify a resident team, arrangements are made to provide a visiting service or to access dental treatment from a DDS centre nearby. On occasion this may be sourced from DDS assets within Royal Navy or Army establishments. In all cases provision is made to ensure prompt access to emergency dental care. In common with the dental support provided to the other services, the performance indicators (PI) against which RAF dental services are measured are contained within the Defence Medical Service (DMS) strategic plan. Currently the services provided for RAF stations meet all relevant PIs.
The DDS operates a quality management system for clinicians and dental centres. This process requires that all clinicians are subject to periodic clinical quality assessment by an appointed clinician. All dental centres are subject to annual health care governance assessments using a Care Quality Commission accredited assessment process. This quality management process is managed by clinicians at regional headquarters, monitored by DDS HQ and assured by the inspector general on behalf of the surgeon general.
The healthcare governance assessment results are collated by DDS HQ to identify trends that highlight both best practice and areas for improvement, which can be subject to quality improvement initiatives. DDS HQ also submits to the JMC HQ an annual healthcare governance statement of internal control, identifying on a pan-DDS basis areas of good practice and areas for improvement. In a broader DMS context, DDS
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Although DDS healthcare governance assessment results are currently not published in the public domain in the format requested, the Healthcare Commission undertook an assessment of the DMS, including the DDS, in 2009 with the resulting report being placed in the public domain.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Baroness Wilcox): The UK Government are in frequent contact with other European member states, both at ministerial and official level, on a wide range of issues. The subject of artist's resale rights has been discussed many times, but to date there has been no widespread support for revisiting this legislation.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Sassoon on 20 June (WA 224), whether the Court of the Bank of England commissioned or received a report on the performance of the Court of the Bank of England in the run-up to and during the early stages of the global banking crisis.[HL10503]
The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): Like other boards, the Court of the Bank of England undertakes periodic surveys of its own effectiveness, covering the management of meetings, the degree of challenge and support to the executive and the quality of information provided. Such a survey was conducted in 2008 under the guidance of the chair of the non-executive directors' committee.
In relation to the banking crisis, the executive and non-executive members of the Court contributed to the analysis of the lessons from the financial crisis, both for the regulators and for central banks. This was reflected in Bank officials' speeches and public evidence to parliamentary committees from the start of the crisis. It also contributed to the previous Government's review during 2008.
The Bank highlighted, in particular, the need for a resolution regime for banks, better regulation of bank liquidity and revised liquidity insurance arrangements that could be drawn without risk of stigmatising
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To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have had any discussions with the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) following the BIS's recent published view that United Kingdom monetary policy was not sustainable.[HL10572]
The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Bank of England has operational responsibility for setting the official Bank rate to meet the Government's inflation target. The independence of the MPC is critical to ensuring the credibility and success of United Kingdom monetary policy. The current views of the MPC-including on the outlook for inflation and the stance of monetary policy-are explained in the Bank of England's May 2011 Inflation Report.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have any proposals to increase regulatory oversight of non-banking financial companies, or "shadow banks", to redress the imbalance caused by a tightening of regulation and capital requirements for banks. [HL10573]
Lord Sassoon: At the Seoul G20 summit in November 2010, leaders agreed to "strengthen regulation and oversight of shadow banking1". This work is being taken forward by the Financial Stability Board, through a task force chaired by Lord Turner of Ecchinswell.
The group published a document in April 2011 that set out early findings, including views relating to monitoring and mapping of shadow banking and the range of regulatory options that may be applied to aspects of shadow banking. It is available online at: http://www.financialstabilityboard.org/publications/r_11041 2a.pdf.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Sassoon on 14 February (WA 101), what charges have been made to date by Ernst and Young for their work on the administration process and recovery of money from Heritable Bank plc, Kaupthing Singer and Friedlander and the Landsbanki Resolution Committee; and how much has been so recovered to date.[HL10690]
The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): Information on administration costs can be found in the relevant administrator's reports. The most recent reports can be found at the following links:
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Henley on 20 June (WA 225-6), whether English Nature has carried out a regulatory impact assessment of the cost to all concerned of complying with the European Union protected species directive in relation to bats. [HL10629]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): As explained in the previous Answer, the costs of compliance with the requirements of the directive can vary considerably on a case by case basis and such costs are not centrally collected. While the transposing regulations have been subsequently amended to reflect the terms of the directive better, its requirements have remained the same. Since its transposition, therefore, no regulatory impact assessment of the costs of compliance with the requirements of the directive as regards bats has been made.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Browning on 24 May (WA 427-8), whether they will consider amending
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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): The Government will listen to the view of the House of Commons and are sympathetic to the motion for a ban. We will continue to look carefully at how this could be introduced; there are legal difficulties that we cannot ignore but which we are continuing to explore.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): Until recently EU Regulation No. 259/2008 required each member state to publish common agricultural policy (CAP) payment information relating to all recipients, i.e. to both legal persons (e.g. companies) and natural persons (e.g. individual beneficiaries). However, in November 2010 the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled that the publication of data on natural persons in the form required by the regulation should cease. In order to give immediate effect to the judgment, and as a temporary measure, the European Commission amended the regulation (by Regulation 410/2011) such that each member state is now required to publish only the information relating to legal persons.
In the coming weeks Defra will publish information about UK CAP payments made to legal persons between 16 October 2008 and 15 October 2010 under all CAP schemes: i.e. market schemes, the single payment and other direct aid schemes and rural development schemes. CAP payment information relating to natural persons will not be published.
The European Commission now intends to review the legislation with the aim of restoring the former level of transparency about all recipients of CAP scheme funding, while still taking account of the CJEU judgment. The UK will continue to press the Commission to bring forward new legislation that will maximise transparency and openness in the use of EU funds. The UK has consistently supported the provision of information relating to payments under the CAP.
The UK CAP payments website, where this data will be published as soon as the data on natural persons has been separated out, can be found at: http://cap-payments.defra.dov.uk/.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans are in place to ensure that local authorities are meeting their legal obligations on equality following the High Court judgment that Birmingham City Council were in breach of the Disability Discrimination Act 2005 by restricting care to those with critical needs.[HL10487]
Baroness Verma: Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010 places a legal obligation on public bodies, including local authorities, to consider the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations. The equality duty came into force on 5 April 2011, replacing the disability equality duty under the Disability Discrimination Act 2005 and similar duties relating to race and gender equality.
As was the case for the previous public sector equality duties, the Equality and Human Rights Commission is the statutory body with powers to assess compliance with the equality duty and to take legal proceedings against public bodies that are failing to comply.
To help public bodies comply with the equality duty, the Government Equalities Office has published guidance explaining what the equality duty requires. The Equality and Human Rights Commission also plans to produce a statutory code of practice and more detailed guidance for public bodies.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Verma on 17 May (WA 301), whether any proposals for changes to the Equality Act 2010 would be subject to public consultation before they were introduced.[HL9473]
Baroness Verma: Any proposals for changes to the Equality Act 2010 generated by the Red Tape Challenge would receive careful consideration, including an assessment of whether they are proportionate, practical,
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To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Verma on 15 June (WA 192-3), what estimates they have made of the cost of implementing the new Section 149 Equality Act duty to have due regard to the need to eliminate discrimination, advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations, and of the cost of collating and publishing the required workforce diversity information; and what are the annual cost and staff numbers involved in effecting the previous process requirements.[HL10598]
Baroness Verma: On 27 June, the specific duties regulations were laid before Parliament and most of the information requested is in the regulatory impact assessment published alongside the regulations. On the specific questions, we estimate that the implementation of the new equality duty resulted in a one-off transitional cost to the public sector of around £2.7 million. The new duty is expected to result in a net benefit thereafter to the public sector of between £14 million and £25 million (mid-point estimate £19 million) each year compared to the cost of complying with the previous race, disability and gender equality duties, which had recurring costs of £39 million to £45 million each year. The benefit is a result of reduced bureaucracy-the removal of requirements to publish equality schemes, for example.
We also estimate that around 1,100 full-time equivalent staff were required per annum across the public sector to implement the previous duties. The implementation of the new equality duty will require approximately 500 fewer full-time equivalent staff per annum.
To encourage public bodies to be transparent, the new draft specific duties regulations would require public bodies with 150 or more staff to publish workforce information demonstrating their compliance with the equality duty. However, the draft regulations do not prescribe any particular data to be published and it will be for each public body to decide exactly what information it publishes. We expect all large public bodies to have workforce monitoring processes in place. We therefore estimate that there will be no additional costs to public bodies from this requirement.
Lord Taylor of Holbeach: Since May 2010, training for Ministers has been centrally funded by the Core Learning Programme. Under this programme, departments made payments in 2010 to cover a wide
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These figures are also available in table format on the National School's website at http://www.nationalschool. gov.uk/policy/MinisterialProgramme/Table.asp.
Lord Taylor of Holbeach: The Cabinet Office undertakes a large amount of research and data collection across the department. The results of much of this research is published on the Cabinet Office website (www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk). However, relevant units
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To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the latest valuation of the government art collection; how many pieces it contains; how many staff are dedicated to its supervision and maintenance; what is the annual cost of its supervision and maintenance; and how many pieces in an average year are openly accessible to the general public.[HL10469]
Baroness Rawlings: The government art collection (GAC) has no current market valuation or estimated valuation. An accurate current monetary value of a work of art can be accurately assessed only at the time of purchase or sale, or by professional valuation. The collection is not actively traded, and it would not be a justifiable expenditure of public funds to have the whole collection valued professionally. The GAC contains 13,619 works.
There are 15 permanent staff posts, including 14 full- time staff and two job shares. All but one of these posts is specialist in nature. The GAC's programme budget for the current financial year, 2011-12, is £347,000. This has been reduced from £540,000 (which included £194,000 capital) for 2010-11 and covers transport and installation, conservation, framing, photography, copyright and website costs.
The GAC's prime and specific remit is to promote British art, history and culture through the display of works of art in the representational areas of over 400 UK government buildings in this country and all over the world. Some two-thirds of the collection's holdings are out on display at any one time. Each year these works of art are seen by many thousands of visitors to these buildings. Because of this unique role, it is not possible to provide a meaningful average annual figure for the number of works that are accessible by the general public.
The GAC runs at least three tours of its premises per month for up to 20 members of the general public each time, and take part in the annual museums at night weekend in May and open house weekend in September. These tours take the form of an introduction to the history and role of the GAC and a tour round its premises and a sample of the works of art that are on the premises at that point, which are changing on a constant basis.
The GAC is currently holding the first in a series of five consecutive exhibition displays at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in London, to September 2012. These five displays will then tour as a single unit to Birmingham and Belfast in 2012-2013. Since the first display opened in early June 2011, at least 17,000 visitors have seen it. This current display contains 25 works of art, and
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The GAC has just published the first book about the collection's role, Art, Power, Diplomacy: The Untold Story of the Government Art Collection. This illustrates some 125 individual works of art in the collection, plus many contextual photographs. Almost the entire collection is accessible by the worldwide public on a constant basis through the GAC's website, which gives general information about the GAC as well as features on specific aspects of its role (www.gac.culture.gov.uk). Additionally, the collection's entire holding of paintings is accessible in the BBC "Your Paintings" website (www.bbc.co.uk/arts/yourpaintings) operated via the Public Catalogue Foundation (PCF). The PCF published a hard copy volume on the GAC's holdings of paintings in January 2008.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have for informing general practitioners and health workers of the latest research highlighting the dangers arising from addiction to benzodiazepines and other prescribed drugs.[HL10700]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): On 11 May, the day of publication of the National Addiction Centre's and National Treatment Agency's research reports, a departmental official gave a presentation on them at a training event about addiction to medicine, which was organised with the Royal College of General Practitioners. Officials have been working with the college and other interested parties to develop plans for further dissemination, including via the internet and training materials.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will issue public warnings of the risks of addiction to prescribed drugs, including printed notices in hospitals, surgeries, post offices and council offices; and, if so, when.[HL10701]
Earl Howe: A range of guidance materials has already been provided to general practitioners and pharmacists for use with their patients regarding the risks of dependency associated with prescription and over-the-counter medicines. For details on this, I refer the noble Earl to the Written Answer given on 20 June 2011 (Official Report, col. WA 245).
In addition, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency plans to use its publication for healthcare professionals, Drug Safety Update, to highlight the report of the National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse on addiction to medicines. The article will include a reminder to healthcare professionals about the risks of addiction associated with the use of benzodiazepines and codeine-containing analgesics.
Possible further action will be discussed as part of the work we will be leading to involve relevant organisations and interested individuals to determine what needs to be done in the light of the information contained in the reports published on addiction to medicines.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what research is being carried out to establish the difference between the hereditary and non-hereditary conditions of essential tremor and to ensure the appropriate treatment of both conditions.[HL10707]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): Government investment in health research in England is made principally by the department through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Medical Research Council (MRC).
The NIHR and the MRC are not currently supporting any research directly related to establishing the difference between the hereditary and non-hereditary conditions of essential tremor. However, as part of a broad portfolio of research on neurological disorders, such as Parkinson's disease, the MRC has supported a number of projects that aim to improve the understanding of the condition. The following are examples of current projects in this area:www.mrc.ac.uk/ResearchPortfolio/Grant/Record.htm?GrantRef= G0701698&CaseId = 12091; andReprogramming the Nervous System through a Wearable Neurostimulation Device, Professor S N Baker, Newcastle University (£407k, April 2009-October 2012): http://www.mrc.ac.uk/ ResearchPortfolio/Grant/Record.htm? GrantRef=G0801705&CaseId= 14274.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): Information is not held on which companies supply surgical instruments to which National Health Service organisations. However, a list
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NHS Supply Chain contract at a national level on behalf of the NHS, although NHS trusts are not bound to procure goods through NHS Supply Chain. It is estimated that NHS Supply Chain accounts for 10 to 15 per cent of all surgical instruments supplied into the NHS by value. The remaining proportion will be supplied directly through a variety of different procurement models established by NHS organisations and served by many of the same suppliers as supply through NHS Supply Chain. The suppliers under contract to NHS Supply Chain will, though, account for a significant proportion of sales of surgical instruments to the NHS overall.
The principal responsibility for ensuring that regulatory standards are met rests with the supplier. Manufacturers of surgical instruments must ensure that their devices meet the relevant safety, quality and performance requirements laid down in the EU medical devices directive before they are placed on the United Kingdom market.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has a post-market surveillance and enforcement role in the regulation of devices placed on the market in the UK and will assess all allegations of non-compliance brought to its attention. An extensive and well-known system for the user reporting and the assessment of incidents of device failures exists, and if there is evidence that devices placed on the market are not compliant with the requirements of the directive, the MHRA has a range of powers and sanctions available under the Consumer Protection Act to deal with the problem.
|NHS Supply Chain surgical instruments supplier-suppliers and contracts|
Earl Howe: Manufacturers of surgical equipment must ensure that their devices meet the relevant safety, quality and performance requirements laid down in the European Union medical devices directive prior to placement on the United Kingdom market. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has a role in the surveillance and enforcement of the regulation of devices placed in the UK and will assess all allegations of non-compliance brought to its attention.
A system is in place for the user reporting and assessment of incidents of device failures. In the event of evidence emerging that devices placed on the market are not compliant with the requirements of the directive, the MHRA has a range of powers and sanctions available under the Consumer Protection Act to deal with the problem.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the average payment of housing benefit by borough in the Greater London area; and what are the average rents in the (a) social, and (b) private, rented sectors in those boroughs.[HL10608]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Hanham): The table below provides a list of the average weekly housing benefit by local authorities in London-March 2011:
|Average weekly amount (4)|
Information on registered social landlords' average weekly rents is collected through the regulatory and statistical return survey by the Tenant Services Authority. The average weekly rent as at 31 March each year in each local authority is published on the Department for Communities and Local Government website. The link for this table is given below:
Average weekly rents for local authority dwelling units are collected from housing revenue account subsidy forms. The average weekly rent as at 31 March each year is published on the Department for Communities and Local Government website. The link for this table is given below: http://www.communities. gov.uk/documents/housing/xls/1777605.xls/ http://www. communities.gov.uk/documents/housing/xls/1777599.xls.
The department's English housing survey produces estimates of private rented sector market rents for England and for regional areas. The link for this table is given below: http://www.communities.gov.uk/documents/ housing/xls/1806330.xls.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will investigate the suspension and subsequent treatment of seven Bahraini trainee air pilots at an aviation academy in Gatwick to ascertain whether British laws have been broken.[HL9664]
The Minister of State, Home Office (Baroness Browning): The published guidance for international students here under tier 4 of the points-based system who are sponsored by their Government or another overseas body makes it clear that they are expected to leave the country if their sponsorship comes to an end.
The UK Border Agency is clear that passengers seeking entry for more than three months under the tier 5 concessions of the points-based system must obtain an entry clearance prior to travelling to the UK. Non-visa nationals who seek entry in this category for a period of less than three months are required to obtain a certificate of sponsorship before travelling to the UK.
The UK Border Agency is clear that passengers seeking entry for more than three months under the tier 5 concessions of the points-based system must obtain an entry clearance prior to travelling to the UK. Non-visa nationals who seek entry in this category for a period of less than three months are required to obtain a certificate of sponsorship before travelling to the UK.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what further action the European Union delegation to Israel can take to protect the rights of children in the light of the alleged ill-treatment of children in East Jerusalem that breaches the European Union Guidelines on Children in Armed Conflict and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child.[HL10528]
The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The EU is following closely the situation in East Jerusalem and is concerned by the series of recent actions by the Israeli authorities. Based on recent discussions by the EU Heads of Mission in Jerusalem, the high representative proposed that an EU démarche be carried out with the Government of Israel at the earliest opportunity. This was carried out on 3 July and particular stress was laid on the need to avoid provocative or unilateral acts that would tend to undermine trust and confidence between the parties, and further complicate the search for a basis for the renewal of negotiations. This démarche had been cleared by all 27 EU member states.
The EU welcomes the recent decision by the Israeli Supreme Court to grant the same amount of subsidies to schools in West and East Jerusalem. Furthermore, the EU expresses its hope that the school curriculum
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The UK, along with EU partners, regularly raises our concerns with the Israeli Government about the application of due process and the treatment of Palestinian detainees, including where children are involved.
The noble Baroness may be interested to hear that alongside our existing projects, our consulate general in Jerusalem has recently secured funding to fund the UK Bar Committee for Human Rights to come to the Occupied Palestinian Territories in September 2011 to research a report about the treatment of children arrested and detained in the Israeli military court system.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that any successor government to the present regime in Libya has regard to the rights of Tuaregs living in Libya, and their claims to citizenship.[HL10482]
The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The Tuaregs, like all Libyans, should be able to enjoy the full rights of citizenship, regardless of colour, gender, ethnicity or social status.
We have raised the need for an inclusive, democratic, future for Libya with the National Transitional Council. Its published views for a democratic Libya set out its commitment to make this a reality.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Hanham on 24 May (WA 418), when they expect to publish the written representations to the 2011-12 local government finance settlement online.[HL10586]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Hanham): We intend to make available this large volume of documents before the House rises for the Summer Recess.
Lord Taylor of Holbeach: The National Citizen Service is being piloted in a range of locations across England in summer 2011. Twelve organisations are leading delivery consortia to provide National Citizen Service opportunities for approximately 10,000 young people this year. The Government intend to expand the programme to reach 30,000 young people in summer 2012, the second year of the pilot phase, and have commissioned an independent evaluation to assess the success of the programme and to inform decisions about the further extension of the National Citizen Service. During the pilot phase, the Government are testing the approach in urban, suburban and rural locations, and at different scales to assess the effectiveness of different delivery approaches. The locations of the scheme in 2012 will be subject to the outcomes of a commissioning process for National Citizen Service delivery provision. Funding for the two-year pilot phase has been allocated to the Cabinet Office (Office for Civil Society). Decisions regarding the extension of the scheme beyond 2012 will be taken in light of the experience of the pilots and the outcomes of the independent evaluation.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the ability of the new waterways charity to sustain and improve the quality of the existing network of canals and rivers through private donations.[HL10545]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Henley): Targeted market research and modelling for British Waterways indicates that fundraising from sources such as regular donors or legacies could be worth up to £8.5 million (net) after 10 years, based on 130,000 regular donors taking part.
Lord Henley: The Government's recent consultation "A New Era for the Waterways" makes the following suggestions as to the key charitable purposes of the new charity, which could be included in its constitution:
Lord Henley: Certain stakeholders currently pay for their use of the waterways, and this will continue under the new charity. The largest group are the boat licence fee payers but others include anglers and residents.
The new waterways charity will be able to generate income from a variety of new charitable and commercial sources, for example through fund-raising by the communities that live alongside the waterways. Government have committed to supporting the new waterways charity through a long-term funding agreement and by transferring the British Waterways commercial property portfolio to the charity, for the purposes of generating income for the waterways.
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much the Peterborough Primary Care Trust has received from its strategic health authority in special funds over and above its annual resource allocation in each of the past three years in order to meet its statutory duty in each financial year to contain revenue expenditure within approved revenue resource limits.[HL10561]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): In each of the past three years, Peterborough Primary Care Trust has received only its own annual resource allocation. However, in 2009-10, the primary care trust ended the year with a deficit of £13 million.
Peterborough Primary Care Trust continues to improve its underlying finances, achieved by making the best use of its services, and has agreed plans in place to clear its legacy debt, in respect of the 2009-10 deficit, by 2012-13.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what proportion of NHS staff employed on 1 April 2010 employed on strategic health authority and primary care trust functions will remain employed as of (a) 1 April 2011, (b) 1 April 2012, and (c) 1 April 2013.[HL10521]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): The National Health Service Information Centre monthly workforce statistics state that 250,509 people were employed in strategic health authorities (SHAs) and primary care trusts (PCTs) at the end of March 2010. The corresponding figure for the end of March 2011 is 215,214. This is a reduction of 14.1 per cent.
The impact assessment, published alongside the Health and Social Care Bill, estimated that 60 per cent of staff employed in SHAs and the non front-line parts of PCTs would transfer to the new organisations. This is assumed to have been completed by April 2013.
The impact assessment is available at: www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsLegislation/DH_123583.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have been advised that the BBC will need to pay extra contributions to address its pension fund deficit as stated by the chairman of trustees in his foreword to the 2010 BBC pension scheme annual report; and whether they will approve those coming out of the licence fee.[HL10509]
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment have they made of (a) the report Pub is the Hub: Evaluating the Impact of Initiatives 2011, and (b) the case for a statutory code of practice for pub tenants and pub owners.[HL10616]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Hanham): (a) The Evaluating the Impact of Initiatives 2011 report provides a clear demonstration of the excellent work that Pub is the Hub undertakes, providing innovative solutions that help communities and pubs work more
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The Government support communities that, often with the help of organisations such as Pub is the Hub, are stepping in to save their local pub from closure. To support their efforts, the Government are giving communities increased powers to get involved. Through the Localism Bill, we aim to ensure that community organisations have a fair chance to bid to take over assets and facilities that are important to them, including local pubs. The department will also undertake a public consultation into the issue of restrictive covenants on pubs, with a focus on the impact they have on local communities.
The Government are also helping to support community pubs by extending the temporary increase in small business rate relief until 30 September 2012, reforming licensing regulations to make is easier to play live music, scrapping the 10 per cent rise in cider duty and banning the sale of alcohol below cost price, helping to stop the worst instances of deep discounting in shops.
(b) The Office of Fair Trading's final decision on the Campaign for Real Ale's supercomplaint regarding the use of tied agreements concluded that the pub sector in the UK is competitive overall and it has not found evidence of competition problems that are having a significant adverse impact on consumers.
The Government have been monitoring the implementation of new voluntary codes of practice by the industry. The Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee is currently undertaking a further inquiry into how the industry has self-reformed within the timeframe set out in 2010. The Government will be interested in the committee's findings and will respond accordingly once the process is complete.
Earl Attlee: The National Passenger Survey monitors customer satisfaction with all aspects of rail service quality, and is published biannually by Passenger Focus. All franchises have punctuality and performance benchmarks set out in their passenger charters. The public performance measure for each operator is published by the Office of Rail Regulation quarterly and is available at http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk/server/show/nav.2026#ppm. For the new InterCity West Coast franchise, which is the next major franchise to be let, the Government will require the franchisee to achieve passenger satisfaction targets in key areas, and publish the results at stations and online.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Statement by Earl Atlee on 19 May (WS 100-01), whether they have plans to assess railway incidents, including the frequency of disruptions and the lack of opportunities for diversions. [HL9461]
Earl Attlee: Rail incidents, disruptions and diversion opportunities are operational issues for which Network Rail (NR) and train operators are responsible. The Department for Transport does not have operational responsibility over the railway, unlike the motorway network for which the department through its agency (Highway Agency) maintains operational responsibility.
The department is aware that NR and train operators have in place pre-agreed contingency plans which provide for maintaining operations as best as possible when incidents occur that disrupt services. These plans are regularly reviewed and updated, and take account of diversionary opportunities.
To ask Her Majesty's Government when the work of the Highway Agency on the A184 White Mare Pool intersection, which began in February 2010 at an original estimated cost of £2.9 million, will be complete; what will be the estimated final cost; and how late is the completion date in comparison to the original timescale.[HL10840]
Earl Attlee: Following the serious delays to these essential maintenance works, the traffic restrictions on the A184 have now been removed and the remainder of works on site will be complete by 10 August 2011. The contractual implications of the overrun are still being assessed by the Highways Agency. The completion date is 38 weeks over the original programme.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Hill of Oareford): The UK assumes the presidency of the European schools in August 2011. As holder of the presidency, the UK will be responsible for managing inherited business which will include: a follow up of the Court of Auditors' report on the system; increased autonomy for European schools; and pedagogical issues including ongoing reform of the European baccalaureate.
A priority for the UK presidency will be to review progress on the reform agenda adopted in 2009. This will include the funding of the system, cost sharing among member states and ensuring that the European schools concept is able to change and adapt to new economic conditions.
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many of the schools which were awarded grade 1 in their penultimate Ofsted inspection were awarded in their subsequent inspection (a) grade 2, (b) grade 3, and (c) grade 4.[HL10686]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Schools (Lord Hill of Oareford): These are matters for Ofsted. John Goldup, national director of development and strategy, has written to the noble Lord on behalf of HM Chief Inspector. Copies of his replies have been placed in the House Libraries.
The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Howell of Guildford): The Government take the issue of modern slavery very seriously. The Home Office will shortly be publishing the Government's strategy on human trafficking. It will set out the Government's plan for combating human trafficking, which is a modern form of slavery. This will fulfil a commitment in the coalition programme for government to tackle human trafficking as a priority. The strategy will have four key aims: improved identification and care for the victims of trafficking, international action to stop trafficking happening in the first place, a stronger border at home to stop victims being brought in to the UK, and tougher law enforcement action to tackle the criminal gangs that orchestrate the crime.
While the issue of human trafficking is a Home Office lead, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) supports the UK Border Agency, the Serious and Organised Crime Agency and other law enforcement agencies in their work to tackle organised immigration crime, including the trafficking of people. Our migration delivery officers based in a number of posts overseas gather information and report trends. We also manage a cross-government fund that has financed projects to
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The Government are also a strong supporter of the work of the UN Special Rapporteur for Contemporary Forms of Slavery, Ms Gulnara Shahinian. The UK led the UN Human Rights Council resolution to renew the mandate of the special rapporteur in 2010 for a further three-year term. My honourable friend the Minister of State, Jeremy Browne, met Ms Shahinian in December 2010, and the FCO has made contributions of £20,000 in 2010 and £25,000 in 2011 towards her mandate.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Earl Howe): The additional funding for social care has been allocated in two distinct ways, through formula grant to local authorities and from the National Health Service to local authorities.
In 2011-12, an additional £530 million was allocated to local government in addition to existing departmental grants for social care. In order to support local flexibility and to reduce administrative burdens, this funding was allocated to local authorities through the local government formula grant. Formula grant is not hypothecated for different services and it is therefore not possible to determine how much of the additional funding through local government has been allocated for social care. However, we do receive local authorities' budgeted spend on adult social care through the revenue account data returns in June of each year. These data are publicly available.
In addition to funding through formula grant, the Government provided a specific allocation of £648 million to primary care trusts (PCTs) for 2011-12 for measures that support social care, which also benefit health. As part of our planning and assurance processes for 2011-12, we are holding strategic health authorities (SHAs) to account for ensuring that arrangements are in place between local authorities and PCTs for the funding to be transferred and objectives for the investment agreed.
Local authorities and the NHS have been working together to agree how this funding should be best used to support social care services. NHS planning assurance showed that all SHAs had confirmed there were local plans in place to agree the transfer. We will continue to get information on the progress of the money as the NHS financial reporting year progresses.
In addition to this funding, the Government allocated £150 million to PCTs in 2011-12 to develop local reablement services in the context of the post-discharge
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In 2010-11, by making efficiency savings to central programmes, the department made available an extra £162 million to local health and care services to spend in 2010-11 on front-line services. In addition, £70 million was made available for reablement services in 2010-11.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what would be the cost to the Exchequer in 2010-11 and 2025-2026 if the cap on individuals' contributions to their social care proposed by the Dilnot commission was set at £100,000 rather than the £35,000 used in the commission's report.[HL10776]
Earl Howe: The commission's report provided a range of costs for a capped costs system, from £1.7 billion for a cap at £25,000 to £0.8 billion for a cap at £50,000. These costings are for 2010-11, and assume that people in residential care contribute £10,000 per annum for general living costs. The Government are now considering the recommendations, and do not have alternative costings available.
The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): The Government believe in a fair tax system and keep all taxes under review. Any changes are considered as part of the normal Budget process and in the context of the current economic climate.
The Budget 2011 set out the next steps in realising the Government's vision of a fair, simple and efficient tax system that rewards work, saving and personal responsibility. This supports the Government's strategy to increase social mobility in the UK.
The Commercial Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Sassoon): This Government are fully committed to tackling tax avoidance. We have set out a clear strategy and reported on the action being taken to put it into practice in the Budget document Tackling Tax Avoidance.
Tackling Tax Avoidance announced two new pieces of work to strengthen defences against tax avoidance. The first is a proposal to remove the cash-flow advantage that tax avoiders can get by using high-risk avoidance schemes. The second is to undertake a rolling review of high-risk areas of the tax code. The initial areas identified for complete review are income tax losses and unauthorised unit trusts. Later Budgets will announce further areas.
Since the 2011 Budget, proposals on the above have been published for consultation on the HMRC website at: http://customs.hmrc.gov.uk/ channelsPortalWebApp/channelsPortalWebApp. portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=pageLibrary_ ConsultationDocuments&columns=1&id =CURRENTCONSULTATIONS.
Lord Sassoon: The latest tax gap estimates were published in September 2010 in Measuring Tax Gaps 2010, available on the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) website at: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/stats/measuring-tax-gaps-2010.htm.pdf.
In addition, avoidance exists in other taxes and taxpayer populations but no separate estimates were produced of any associated tax gaps. As such, an estimate of the total tax gap due to avoidance was not published.
Lord Sassoon: Over the next four years, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will reinvest £917 million of the savings it makes in order to maximise additional revenues, which will include putting extra resource into tackling avoidance and evasion.
HMRC's business plan for 2011-12 shows a re- investment of £132 million, while indicative plans for the remaining years of the spending review period are £191 million, £268 million and £326 million, respectively.
The reinvestment will fund a range of measures, including: significantly increasing coverage of the mass market; tackling tax evasion; building on the existing one-to-one client relationship model for large businesses and wealthy individuals; tackling organised crime; and a range of interventions designed to collect more debt. Together, this should bring in around £7 billion each year by 2014-15 in additional revenues.
Baroness Rawlings: There have been no discussions between Ofcom and the Government on this particular matter. Ofcom is an independent regulator and the issue would be one for it to consider under its competition powers.
However, Ofcom is consulting on measures to standardize and simplify how a wide range of non-geographic numbers (03, 08, 09 etc) are priced. As part of this review Ofcom is considering, among other options, a proposal to specify maximum retail prices for non-geographic number ranges that would apply to all providers, and officials have met to discuss these proposals.
The proposal is subject to minor amendments to the Communications Act 2003 as part of Government's implementation of the revised EU framework. The Government have worked very closely with Ofcom on implementation of the framework. This included discussion of these amendments.
To ask Her Majesty's Government what new advice they have received from the European Commission concerning the legality of allowing longer semi-trailer heavy goods vehicles of up to 18.55 metres on a permanent basis.[HL10740]
Earl Attlee: None. The Commission has, however, invited us to delay implementing any regulations permitting longer semi-trailers until April 2012, as it is
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To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (a) the development results framework contained in the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality, and (b) the Empowerment of Women strategic plan 2011-13.[HL10537]
Baroness Verma: The UK has strongly supported the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, known as UN Women, since its creation. UN Women's strategic plan was adopted by its executive board on 30 June 2011. At that board the UK welcomed the priority areas outlined in the strategic plan. For example, tackling violence against girls and women and increasing women's political and economic empowerment will prove vital in improving the lives of millions. This is why the UK has decided to provide £10 million a year in core funding to UN Women for the next two years. UN Women now needs to focus on delivering results for girls and women across the world.
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Verma on 14 June (WA 185), whether they are engaged in talks with the Government of South Africa concerning the latter's declared intention to deport up to 500,000 undocumented Zimbabwean refugees by 31 July; which other countries are involved; and what is the prospect of reaching an agreement with the Government of South Africa that protects these refugees.[HL10468]
Lord Taylor of Holbeach: We regularly discuss Zimbabwe with the South African Government and fully support ongoing efforts by President Zuma and SADC to broker agreement on further reform in Zimbabwe and to assist the development of a roadmap to free and fair elections.
We are aware of South African plans to offer permits to certain groups of Zimbabwe citizens currently resident in South Africa, and to take action to deport illegal immigrants. We have not engaged directly with the South African Government on this issue. We do, however, provide support to civil society groups working on issues of concern to migrants from Zimbabwe in South Africa.
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