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Column 138on the number of motorists breathalysed by the Metropolitan police in the month of December and the proportion of those which were negative.
Mr. Douglas Hogg : Provisional figures in respect of the Christmas and new year period (19 to 31 December) indicate that 10,937 motorists were required by the Metropolitan police to provide breath specimens. 980 (8.9 per cent.) of those tests produced positive results.
Full statistics of screening breath tests will be published later this year.
Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will request the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis to have examined the equipment used by police to administer breathalyser tests to motorists leaving the rugby match at Twickenham on 6 December 1988.
Mr. Fisher : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will amend his orders banning the broadcasting of terrorist interviews so as to make clear the precedence of the statutory duty laid on the British Broadcasting Corporation and Independent Broadcasting Authority to exercise due impartiality.
Mr. Renton : My right hon. Friend has no plans to amend the notices in this way. They do not affect the impartiality of the BBC and the IBA, which continue to be able to report events and words uttered.
Mr. Fisher : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will amend his orders banning the broadcasting of terrorist interviews so as to permit an elected Sinn Fein councillor to be interviewed on matters to do with (a) housing, (b) the arts, (c) social services, (d) health, (e) planning and (f) local government finance.
Mr. Fisher : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his ban on broadcasting terrorist interviews permits the words of a person representing or purporting to represent a proscribed organisation being spoken by another person while both persons appear on screen.
Mr. Renton : The directions prevent the broadcasting of direct statements by persons representing, or purporting to represent, supporting or inviting support for, the organisations named in the notices. It is for the BBC and the IBA to decide how the directions should be applied in particular circumstances.
(2) whether his ban on broadcasting terrorist interviews covers interviews recorded with persons who have since died ;
Column 139(3) whether his ban on broadcasting terrorist interviews applies to archive material older than 25 years.
Mr. Renton : No time limit has been set on the use of archive material, and the restrictions may apply to the broadcasting of interviews with persons who have since died. But any statement which cannot be broadcast directly under the restrictions can still be reported and drawn upon in the course of a particular programme.
Mr. Fisher : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether it is his intention that a television play should be regarded as a genuine work of fiction for the purposes of his ban on broadcasting terrorist interviews.
Mr. Hurd : The magistrates courts occupy a central position in the criminal justice system. I greatly value the contribution which locally based lay magistrates and their staff make to the effective operation of the courts and the criminal justice system in general. The present arrangements for the management of magistrates courts date substantially from 1949 ; since then there has been a considerable increase in the volume and complexity of their work and in the resources used by them. Against this background, I think it timely to examine radically the management and organisational structure of magistrates courts and the arrangements which govern their resources and their use with a view to identifying how these might be improved. I have therefore set in hand a scrutiny of magistrates courts with the following terms of reference : (
(i) to review the present arrangements governing the distribution, management and control of resources in magistrates courts ; (
(ii) with due regard to the advantages of a locally based system of summary justice, to make recommendations to ensure that the mechanisms, at national and local level, for determining resource levels and resource management and control are best suited to the efficient, economic and effective discharge of the responsibilities of the magistrates courts ;
Column 140(iii) to make proposals for any changes in management structures in the magistrates courts service ;
(iv) to identify the potential for further action to reduce unit costs in magistrates courts, shorten delays and improve fine enforcement ; and
(v) to ensure that recommendations under paragraphs (i) to (iv) above are consistent with the legitimate interests of defendants, parties to civil proceedings, legal representatives, witnesses and the various criminal justice agencies.
The scrutiny will be carried out by a team of officials led by Mr. Julian Le Vay (grade 5, Home Office) under the ministerial supervision of my hon. Friend the Member for Oxford, West and Abingdon (Mr. Patten). The scrutiny will begin in mid-February and I expect to receive its report in June.
Ms. Mowlam : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been charged under the prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1984 since enactment of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act ; and how many of these were charged within 96 hours of arrest.
Mr. Canavan : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will list, for each year since 1975, the number of people who have been detained under the Prevention of Terrorism Act ; and if he will give a breakdown of each annual total, specifying the number of people detained for periods of (a) one day or less, (b) two days, (c) three days, (d) four days, (e) five days, (f) six days and (g) seven days and the number of people in each category (a) to (g) who were (i) eventually charged and (ii) found guilty.
Mr. Hurd [holding answers 13 and 20 December 1988 respectively] : The available information, which relates to persons detained under the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1984 during the period 1 January to 30 September 1988 is given in the table. Corresponding information for earlier years could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Information on persons detained is published quarterly in Home Office statistical bulletin, issue 2/87 which gives, in tables 1 and 2, the figures for years up to 1986. Copies of this bulletin are in the Library of the House. I shall write to the hon. Members updating the table to the end of 1988 after the bulletin for the fourth quarter has been published.
Persons detained and charged under the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1984 by length of detention, legislation under which charged and outcome of charge Number of persons (Great Britain) Length of detention Total detained Number charged Outcome of charge |Under the Act |Under other legislation|Found guilty |Other outcome |Awaiting trial ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1986 Less than 1 day |73 |6 |2 |8 |- |- 1 day and less than 2 days |74 |5 |8 |12 |- |1 2 days and less than 3 days |9 |- |- |- |- |- 3 days and less than 4 days |14 |- |3 |3 |- |- 4 days and less than 5 days |13 |1 |6 |7 |- |- 5 days and less than 6 days |8 |1 |4 |5 |- |- 6 days and less than 7 days |7 |- |- |- |- |- 7 days |4 |- |- |- |- |- |--- |--- |-- |--- |--- |--- Total |202 |13 |23 |35 |- |1 1987 Less than 1 day |66 |4 |1 |5 |- |- 1 day and less than 2 days |110 |4 |4 |5 |- |3 2 days and less than 3 days |9 |- |3 |1 |2 |- 3 days and less than 4 days |12 |- |1 |1 |- |- 4 days and less than 5 days |9 |- |2 |2 |- |- 5 days and less than 6 days |7 |- |2 |2 |- |- 6 days and less than 7 days |11 |1 |<1>5 |2 |<1>4 |- 7 days |1 |- |- |- |- |- |--- |--- |-- |--- |--- |--- Total |225 |9 |18 |18 |6 |3 1988<2> Less than 1 day |53 |2 |3 |1 |- |4 1 day and less than 2 days |57 |3 |4 |7 |- |- 2 days and less than 3 days |4 |- |- |- |- |- 3 days and less than 4 days |6 |- |- |- |- |- 4 days and less than 5 days |7 |- |- |- |- |- 5 days and less than 6 days |3 |- |- |- |- |- 6 days and less than 7 days |- |- |- |- |- 7 days |- |- |- |- |- |- |------ |------ |------ |------ |------ |------ Total |<2>130 |5 |7 |8 |- |4 <1> Includes two persons who were subsequently deported or removed. <2> 1 January to 30 September.
Mr. Bernie Grant : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many cases of racial discrimination the Commission for Racial Equality has been unable to pursue, through the courts, in each of the last five years, due to lack of funding ; and if he will make a statement.
In the light of increased legal costs and an increase in the number of applications, the Commission for Racial Equality had to adopt a more selective approach in 1988 towards people seeking assistance in pursuing complaints of alleged discrimination.
Mr. John D. Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland why the price of Ordnance Survey sheets has been increased ; when it was increased ; what is the percentage increase in price ; when the previous increase in price was ; and by what means the public was advised that the prices of Ordnance Survey sheets were to be increased.
The new prices are effective from 1 January 1989, the average percentage increase was 20 per cent. The last increase was on 1 January 1988.
The latest price list was published in January 1989 and is distributed to major users and to the wholesale and retail trade.
Mr. Beggs : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list the number of pupils recorded with special educational needs in Northern Ireland primary and secondary schools by board area and by controlled/maintained category.
Education and Library |Controlled |Maintained |Voluntary Board Area -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Belfast Primary |8 |26 |- Secondary |3 |5 |3 Western Primary |57 |81 |- Secondary |27 |48 |8 North-Eastern Primary |81 |24 |- Secondary |97 |14 |20 South-Eastern Primary |56 |26 |- Secondary |29 |10 |5 Southern Primary |137 |60 |- Secondary |86 |65 |2 Note: Figures for secondary schools include both secondary intermediate and grammar schools.
Mr. Beggs : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will list the total number of teachers at September 1988 employed by grant- aided schools in Northern Ireland, and if he will break down the figures by age band and by sex.
Age groups |Numbers ------------------------------------- Under 35 Male |1,698 Female |4,331 35 to 49 Male |3,850 Female |5,938 50 and over Male |1,217 Female |1,899 Total Teachers Male |6,765 Female |12,168
Mr. John D. Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many students attend the further education colleges in Bangor, Newtownards, Newcastle and Downpatrick ; and how many full-time and part- time lecturers are at each of these colleges.
Further Students Lecturers education colleges |Full-time |Part-time |Full-time |Part-time ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ North Down |- |- |<1>137 |<1>200 Bangor Campus |572 |3,522 |- |- Newtownards Campus |198 |1,881 |- |- Newcastle<2> |277 |993 |34 |51 Downpatrick<2> |649 |2,732 |67 |125 <1> Appointments are to North Down college of further education, not to an individual campus. These figures include staff who also serve in other centres of the college, that is the Holywood campus and some small outcentres. Figures for students at these centres are not included. <2> Figures for Newcastle include outcentres and for Downpatrick include also the Ballynahinch campus and outcentres.
Mr. John D. Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland why part of the Ards peninsula is within the area of Downpatrick college of further education ; whether the college of further education in Newtownards is more convenient to that part of the Ards peninsula ; if he will reconsider this administrative arrangement ; if he will seek the opinion of residents in that part of the Ards peninsula ; and if he will make a statement.
Dr. Mawhinney : Enrolment policy in the area is a matter for the South-Eastern education and library board. I understand that further education students usually attend the nearest appropriate college and the board would not attempt to direct students from the southern part of the Ards peninsula to Down college of further education, Downpatrick.
Mr. Viggers : The company is at present considering locations within the Province for the siting of a toolroom factory. I have asked the IDB to encourage the company to examine all areas before it reaches its decision.
Mr. William Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what has been the average price paid for agricultural land in Northern Ireland in each year since 1977 showing the sums in cash and real terms.
Calendar Year |At current prices £ per |Index in real terms (Base |hectare |1985=100) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1977 |1,846 |121 1978 |2,618 |158 1979 |3,327 |177 1980 |3,227 |146 1981 |2,897 |117 1982 |2,683 |100 1983 |2,866 |102 1984 |2,958 |100 1985 |3,130 |100 1986 |3,128 |97 1987 |3,205 |95
Mr. William Ross : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will publish in the Official Report a table to show information available to him on the sums on loan to farmers in Northern Ireland by the banks in each year or financial year since 1977 showing the sums in cash and real terms and also indicate in those same terms the interest charges due on those sums for each year or financial year if more convenient.
Mr. Viggers : The annual average level of bank advances for farming purposes and the estimated interest charges due on those sums for each year since 1977 in current prices and in real terms are as follows :
Level of bank Estimated interest advances<1> charges<2> Calendar year |At current prices |Index in real terms|At current prices |Index in real terms |£ million |(1985=100) |£ million |(1985=100) |(1) |(2) |(3) |(4) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1977 |57.1 |63 |6.3 |46 1978 |75.8 |77 |8.5 |58 1979 |106.5 |95 |16.7 |101 1980 |134.6 |102 |24.2 |124 1981 |143.9 |97 |22.1 |101 1982 |148.4 |92 |21.2 |89 1983 |158.6 |94 |19.2 |77 1984 |172.3 |98 |21.0 |81 1985 |186.9 |100 |27.6 |100 1986 |205.2 |106 |27.7 |97 1987 |209.4 |104 |25.8 |87 <1> Adjusted to exclude farmers' estimated borrowings for non-agricultural purchases and for land purchases. <2> Interest on bank advances as in column (1). This differs from the interest estimates published in "The Statistical Review of Northern Ireland Agriculture", which also include interest on hire purchase and trade credit agreements.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if his Department is providing financial or other forms of assistance to any private company in the research or development of an early warning temperature monitor for human infants.
Mr. Grist : Financial assistance has been offered by the Department to a private company to help research the market opportunities for an early warning temperature monitor for human infants and the setting up of a manufacturing facility.
Mr. Grist : The information is not available in the form requested. In 1987-88 the Welsh water authority disconnected 2,067 properties within their area of supply. Of these 1,400 were reconnected after payment of bills.
Mr. Rowlands : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether he will meet the chairman of the Welsh water authority to discuss a revised code of practice relating to the disconnection of domestic water supplies.
Mr. Peter Walker : The Bill will apply to England and Wales. I will be responsible for licensing grounds and for designating which football matches in Wales will be subject to the national membership scheme. I propose to set up at an early date a working party to advise me in Wales as to whether any particular match should be designated.
Mr. Neale : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether his Department was under any obligation to notify the European Commission under the terms of directive 80778 Quality of Water Supplied for Human Consumption (article 10) ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Howard : South-West water authority applied to the Department for an emergency derogation under article 10 of the EC drinking water directive (80/778/EEC) on 3 August 1988 as some water samples in the Camelford area were continuing to exceed the directive standard for
Column 146aluminium. The Department concluded that a derogation to permit the directive standard to be relaxed would not be appropriate. It wanted drinking water quality to return to compliance with the standard as soon as possible. It was also satisfied, on medical advice, that there was no public health risk. On 24 October 1988, by which time the Camelford supply had been complying with the aluminium standard for some weeks, the SWWA withdrew the application. Under the directive member states are required to inform the Commission when they grant a derogation under article 10. Because no derogation was granted, there was no obligation to notify the Commission.
116. Mr. Sedgemore : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what action he intends to take to control lump labour in the construction industry and to reduce the number of fatal accidents among self-employed construction workers.
Mr. Trippier : In construction, the use of self-employed labour is often appropriate because of the industry's fluctuating work loads and the increasing specialisms within it. Contractors and self-employed workers should generally be free to agree on the contractual arrangements that best suit their particular circumstances. Due to the itinerant nature of much of the work force, there have always been special difficulties in collecting the tax properly due from all those engaged in the industry. There is at present a special scheme for collecting tax from self-employed operatives, and this was the subject of an efficiency scrutiny in 1988. Several recommendations have been made for improving the current scheme, and these are now under consideration.
The Government are concerned about the high level of fatalities and serious injuries occurring in the industry. New regulations are being prepared which provide for the management and co-ordination of health and safety on multi-contractor sites, increase the number of safety supervisors in smaller companies and amend the site notification procedure to identify sites where there are high-risk activities. The introduction of regulations to make the wearing of safety helmets compulsory on construction sites is also planned. Inspectors from the Health and Safety Executive will be paying more attention to the quality of site management and its ability to manage health and safety. They will pursue their inquiries and any enforcement action to the highest levels in companies which do not measure up to the standards expected of them. The Government have also provided the Health and Safety Executive with an additional £6.7 million in 1988- 89, which will allow an increase in the number of inspectors and raise the number of inspections carried out.
Column 147periodically manned radiation incident monitoring network stations are to Doncaster ; and if he will also list the sites of (a) and (b) above along the A1 and A1(M) main road routes.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : The nearest Rimnet station to Doncaster is at Finningley. Other sites close to the A1/A1(M) are at Heathrow, Wyton, Leeming, Newcastle and Boulmer. All these stations are permanently manned.
Mr. Heddle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what discussions he has initiated with local authority associations, representatives of the construction industry and others about the illegal tipping of building materials.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : There was very extensive consultation before the Government announcement of 29 June last of their intention to impose on waste producers, including those in the construction industry, a duty to care to ensure the safe and legal disposal of their wastes. The announcement also contained the Government's intention to require the registration of carriers of waste with powers to remove carriers from the register if they are convicted of waste disposal offences, including fly- tipping. Consultation is currently in progress on proposals to make registered keepers of vehicles used in fly-tipping liable to prosecution.
Mr. Heddle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Mid-Staffordshire of 1 November 1988, Official Report, column 564, if he has now considered the responses to the consultation paper on disputes about valuations under the Leasehold Reform Act 1967.
Mr. Rooker : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how much derelict land grant has been paid in respect of the site of the former Ansells brewery in Birmingham ; and on what date payment was made.
Payment of grant totalling £300,000 was made to Birmingham city council in two instalments--£170,393 on 28 May 1987 and £129,607 on 21 January 1988.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : I refer the hon. Member to the reply that I gave him on 19 December 1988 at column 40. Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution has a record of 257 waste disposal facilities in south Yorkshire. These are listed by local authority area :
------------------------ Barnsley |63 Doncaster |54 Rotherham |59 Sheffield |81
They do not all accept special waste. Details of the type of waste for which each facility is licensed can be obtained from the appropriate waste disposal authority, which is required to keep a public record.
Mr. Heddle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will now publish his proposals for dealing with the compensation code for domestic property which, under current legislation, is based either upon gross, net annual or rateable values for implementation on 1 April 1990, under the Local Government Finance Act 1988.
Mr. Chope : The Department and the Welsh Office will shortly be publishing a consultation paper on compensation issues which will refer inter alia to the implications of the abolition of rateable values for home loss payments.
Mr. Heddle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps he takes to verify the returns of planning authorities to establish that they maintain a five-year housing land supply in accordance with the requirements of PPG3.
Mr. Chope : We encourage planning authorities to carry out land availability studies jointly with representatives of the local housebuilding industry. Though my Department is not in a position to check the results in detail, we have no reason to doubt that joint studies give a broadly reliable picture of land availability.
Mr. Bernie Grant : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he intends to publish the outcome of his review of part III of the Housing Act 1985, previously the Homeless Persons Act ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Anthony Coombs : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he has completed the review of the housing subsidy system as it applies to large-scale disposals of local authority dwellings announced by the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State on 11 February 1988 during the Standing Committee on the Housing Act 1988.
Mr. Trippier : The Department and the Welsh Office are today issuing a consultation paper resulting from the review of the housing subsidy system. The review was needed to deal with anomalies in the present housing subsidy system for some authorities upon complete or partial disposal of their stock, and to achieve a more equitable and rational mechanism for taking account of disposals. Under the present rules, authorities may sometimes continue receiving subsidy on dwellings sold even if they incur no further expenditure, or may not be entitled to subsidy where they are left with residual debt. The new proposals provide for the payment of residual debt subsidy (RDS) in respect of loan charges on any notional residual debt related to the dwellings sold. RDS would be paid at a rate of 75 per cent. of the loan charges for sales under the tenants' choice provisions of the Housing Act 1988, under right to buy, and in respect of individual sales. For all voluntary sales of stock to other landlords it is proposed that the rate of RDS would be 90 per cent. leaving 10 per cent. to be met from the authority's own resources, except in Wales, where it is proposed that RDS should be 90 per cent. in all cases. This arrangement should give authorities an incentive to obtain a keen sale price and to take management decisions which maintain the value of the stock in advance of disposal.
For those local authorities where it is proposed to create a housing action trust (HAT), the Government intend that any losses caused by the disposal to a HAT, which are not covered by subsidy entitlement following disposal, should be met by the Exchequer by means of a safety net. The idea is to ensure that no additional costs resulting from the transfer of the stock to a HAT should fall on the remaining tenants or ratepayers in the form of rent or rate increases.
It is intended that the new rules should come into effect from 1 April 1989. Copies of the paper have today been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.
Mr. Winnick : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what consultations over rehousing are taking place between his Department and local authorities arising from the effect of higher mortgage interest rates on the ability of some families to meet the repayments.
Mr. Trippier : None. If a borrower finds it difficult to make his regular repayment he should immediately contact his lender, who can then offer him appropriate advice. If his house is repossessed by the lender the local authority, which has the responsibility for housing the homeless, must decide on the appropriate housing provision, taking account of all the facts of the case.