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Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many special advisers were employed by her (a) between 1 May and 31 December 1997 and (b) in each year from 1998 to 2001 inclusive; and what the total amount spent on special advisers by the Department was in each of those years. 
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Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if she will list the 30 largest contracts awarded by her Department from (a) May 1997 to April 1998, (b) May 1998 to April 1999, (c) May 1999 to April 2000, (d) May 2000 to April 2001 and (e) May 2001 to the latest date for which figures are available, stating in each case the values of the contracts and the companies with which the contracts were placed. 
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what the target has been in each of the last five years for efficiency savings as a percentage of total running costs for each of the non-departmental public bodies for which she is responsible; and if the target was met. 
Mrs. Liddell: My Department is responsible for the Boundary Commission for Scotland. The Commission has a statutory duty to keep under review the parliamentary constituencies in Scotland and, periodically, to conduct a general review. No specific efficiency savings targets have been set, but my Department monitors closely the Commission's expenditure plans and outturn.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what has been the (a) cost and (b) saving from the pursuit of the Department's Public Service Agreement targets in each year since they were introduced. 
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what the (a) cost and (b) saving has been from the Department's pursuit of Service Delivery Agreement targets in each year since they were introduced. 
Mrs. Liddell: The Scotland Office Service Delivery Agreement sets out the Department's agreed strategy for delivering its key performance targets. Each year, details of performance against its targets are published in the departmental report.
Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many private finance initiative projects have been subject to refinancing after the contracts have been signed; and what has been the financial effect in each case. 
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland which of the services of her Department have not been reviewed under the Better Quality Services initiative; and when they will be reviewed. 
Mrs. Liddell: The Scotland Office was established in its present form on 1 July 1999. The Department does not deliver executive services to the public and none of its activities have been reviewed under the Better Quality Services initiative.
Mr. Connarty: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many LPG production sites and distribution sites there are; how many there were in 1990; and if she will make a statement on LPG use in Scotland. 
there are currently 1,104 vehicle filling stations in the UK, an increase from 100 in 1998 (Scotland figures: 38 stations in 2000; 54 sites currently).
Mrs. Liddell: There are no members of staff within the Scotland Office allocated to consideration of regional funding mechanisms. The Scotland Office does, however, monitor academic research on these issues.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to her answer of 25 June 2002, Official Report, column 799W, on departmental property, what the annual rent charged for her Department's office accommodation in (a) Edinburgh and (b) London was in the last year. 
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to her answer of 25 June 2002, Official Report, column 799W, on departmental property, from whom her Department leases office accommodation in (a) Edinburgh and (b) London. 
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Advocate-General what has been the (a) cost and (b) saving from the pursuit of the Department's Public Service Agreement targets in each year since they were introduced. 
The Solicitor-General [holding answer 10 June 2002]: In 1999, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) introduced an adverse outcome analysis system. This provides CPS areas with a consistent means to identify reasons for adverse outcomes and also to allocate responsibility of any failure. This information is collated centrally.
For the last seven years, many areas of the CPS have had in place, with the police, a system of joint performance management that involves an appraisal of Crown court acquittals, including those ordered and
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directed by the judge. This process provides areas with information showing particular trends and a means by which improvements can be made.
The Crown Prosecution Service produces quarterly summaries of unsuccessful case outcomes from information drawn from its various case tracking systems. This year the CPS and the police have begun to develop a joint case outcome analysis which builds on these two processes and will focus on avoidable case failure. Under this system, the reasons for judge ordered and judge directed acquittals in individual cases will be jointly assessed for individual training needs and other joint strategies for performance improvement.
The figures in the table show a fall in judge directed acquittals from 1,777 in 1999 to 1,471 last year, a reduction of 17.2 per cent. Over the same period judge ordered acquittals rose from 9,616 to 11,825, an increase of 23 per cent. Much of this increase can be attributed to recent changes in procedures. Since January 2001, the prosecution, unlike before, have been able to discontinue cases in the Crown court. Although this is a prosecution decision, the current system records these as judge ordered acquittals.
|Number||Percentage of completed cases|
|Judge ordered acquittals||9,616||11.1|
|Judge directed acquittals||1,777||2.0|
|Judge ordered acquittals||10,145||12.3|
|Judge directed acquittals||1,755||2.1|
|Judge ordered acquittals||11,825||14.0|
|Judge directed acquittals||1,471||1.7|
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