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Beverley Hughes: Sure Start expenditure for the period from 1998-99 to 2006-07 is shown in the table. Total expenditure includes Sure Start local programmes, child care and some nursery education funding. From 2003-04, expenditure figures also include funding for Sure Start Children's Centres.
|Sure Start current and capital expenditure (£ million)|
|(1 )Estimated outturn.|
Data shown corresponds to outturn figures published in departmental reports. 1997-98 excluded as not on like with like basis.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how much was spent on the detoxification unit in Cardiff prison in each year since it was established; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) how many applications to the detoxification unit at Cardiff prison were (a) accepted, (b) rejected and (c) made in total in each year since it was established; and if he will make a statement. 
It has capacity for 52 prisoners and is routinely full. The unit is a voluntary unit and is offered on reception. A prisoner may refuse treatment but no one is ever rejected. The following number of applications have been made and processed since its opening in September 2004.
Mr. Hanson: All cells on B wing are fully utilised. However, C wing was permanently removed from use in November 2002 as it was no longer fit for purpose due to weather penetration, lack of integral sanitation and inadequate security standards. Refurbishment was considered but was not as economically viable as building new accommodation at a better strategic location.
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many specialist domestic violence courts there are; what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of such courts; how many further such courts are under consideration for establishment; and at which locations. 
My Department and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) commissioned an evaluation of the first five specialist magistrates courts operating in Cardiff, Derby, Leeds, West London and Wolverhampton. The results of the evaluation were published in 2004.
Her Majestys Courts Service, in conjunction with the CPS and the Home Office, is undertaking a review of the first 25 Specialist Domestic Violence Courts. Expressions of interest will be considered for new SDVC systems by end of March 2008.
Mr. Atkinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what steps he has taken to ensure that the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006 are applied to part-time members of the judiciary. 
Bridget Prentice: The retirement ages for all judges, salaried, fee-paid (part-time) and magistrates, were reviewed in the light of the 2006 regulations, and there are currently no plans to change them.
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many requests for information under freedom of information legislation have been awaiting a decision
by the Information Commissioners Office for more than 118 days, as referred to in the answer of 12 October 2006, Official Report, column 807W, on the Information Commissioner; and whether any request concluded since 10 October 2006 has taken longer than 597 days for a decision to be reached. 
Bridget Prentice: The Information requested has been provided by the Information Commissioners office, an independent body created by statute with responsibility for handling complaints made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998. It employs 11 press, marketing and communications staff.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what public expenditure was incurred by the Information Commissioners office in hiring (a) public affairs companies and consultants and (b) public relations companies and consultants, in each year since its creation. 
Bridget Prentice: The Information requested has been provided by the Information Commissioners Office, an independent body created by statute with responsibility for handling complaints made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998. Since its creation in January 2001, it has incurred costs for public relations companies as set out in the following table. There has been no expenditure on public affairs consultants or agencies and no expenditure on public relations consultants.
|Financial year ending 31 March|
Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice in how many cases in each of the last three years the Legal Services Commission recommended exceptional funding for legal advice and representation for those making asylum support appeals; and how many of those recommendations were granted. 
Bridget Prentice: Community Legal Service funding is not generally available for legal representation at asylum support appeals. Funding is available for general legal advice (falling short of advocacy) to those who qualify financially, under the legal help scheme. This allows legal aid solicitors to advise clients on tribunal procedures and can include the provision of written or oral advice, obtaining counsel's opinion if appropriate, and the preparation of a case to present at a tribunal.
However, the Lord Chancellor has the power, on receipt of a recommendation from the Legal Services Commission (LSC), to authorise exceptional funding for representation under Section 6(8)(b) the Access to Justice Act 1999 in those few cases where representation may be essential for a fair hearing, and where no other sources of help can be found.
Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when the Legal Services Commission pilot on frontloading legal advice and assistance in asylum cases will be (a) conducted, (b) evaluated and (c) published; and if she will make a statement. 
Bridget Prentice: The joint Legal Services Commission (LSC) and Border and Immigration Agency (BIA) pilot, entitled the New Asylum Model Early Legal Advice Pilot, commenced on 23 November 2006 and will run until 7 December 2007. The pilot is being evaluated on a monthly basis by the LSC, the BIA and other stakeholders such as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Refugee Legal Centre and the Immigration Advisory Service. A full and joint evaluation report will be produced once all cases in the pilot have concluded.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the average cost of the provision of legal aid services in family law cases was in 2006-07; and what the average length of a legally-aided case was over the same period. 
Bridget Prentice: Figures are not yet available for 2006-07. However, for 2005-06, which is the most current year for which the data is available, the average cost of legal aid services in family law cases was around £3,600. The average length i.e. from issue of certificate to payment of claim, of a legally aided case over the same period was approaching 22 months.
Bridget Prentice: The Group of States Against Corruption (known as GRECO), is currently carrying out a review of party funding in the UK. The review process includes a 3 day visit to the UK. This visit had originally been scheduled for 4-6 July 2007 but is now expected to take place later this year. During the visit two evaluators from other GRECO member states will be meeting with a range of experts in the field of political party funding. Ministry of Justice officials are facilitating this visit by arranging appointments and providing facilities for the use of the evaluation team. In addition, the Ministry of Justice submitted responses to a GRECO questionnaire earlier this year, setting out the legal basis of the party funding regime in the UK.
Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice which (a) redundant military camps or other Ministry of Defence facilities, (b) ships or other floating vessels and (c) former secure hospitals were considered and rejected for use as prisons or secure accommodation in each of the last five years; and in each case what the reasons were for their rejection for such use. 
Mr. Hanson: The Government have undertaken a number of national site search exercises to identify suitable sites for new prisons. These have included the consideration of surplus property owned by other Government Departments such as the MOD and the NHS. The majority of these were ruled out at an early stage as they did not meet the basic criteria for conversion into a prison.
NOMS identified one MOD site, Connaught Barracks in Dover, as potentially suitable for conversion into a prison. The Government decided not to proceed with this site. Another MOD site Rousillon Barracks, Chichester was not pursued further because of its listed status.
A competition to explore the option of using vessels as part of the expansion of the custodial estates of both the NOMS and the Borders and Immigration Agency is currently under way and the OJEU Notice covering the requirement was published on 24 October 2006.
Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many convicted prisoners have been detained in (a) police and (b) court cells in (i) Wrexham and (ii) Wales in each of the last 12 months. 
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