|Previous Section||Home Page|
Mr. Turner : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what information he has as to what is (a) the general betting duty on off- course winning bets on greyhound racing, (b) the amount usually deducted from winning greyhound bets in off-course betting offices, and (c) the amount deducted from winning greyhound bets from horserace totalisator betting shops ; and whether has considered introducing a levy scheme on off -course betting for greyhound racing.
Mr. John Patten [holding answer 24 February 1989] : Under section 1 of the Betting and Gaming Duties Act 1981, general betting duty, on all off-course bets, is an amount equal to 8 per cent. of the amount staked. The amount of any deductions made in their mutual transactions is a matter for the bookmaker and the punter, subject to the requirement in the Licensed Betting Office Regulations 1986 for a betting office licensee to display a notice setting out the terms of which he invites people to bet. But I understand that betting offices customarily deduct 10 per cent. from either the bet or the winnings (if any), at the punter's choice, whatever the bet is on. The same applies in betting offices operated by the Horserace Totalisator Board. We have no proposals for legislation to introduce a levy on off-course betting on greyhound races, although we are considering representations on the matter.
Mr. Turner : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will broaden his discussions on the 28th horserace levy scheme into a wider inquiry into the future financing of both horse and greyhound racing in relation to the increasing strength of the off-course betting market.
My right hon. Friend is considering a recommendation from the chairman of the Horserace Betting Levy Board that, following that determination, there should be an inquiry into the long-term financing of racing, and a request from the British Greyhound Racing Board for an inquiry into the off-course betting industry and its relationship to the finances of horseracing and greyhound racing.
Mr. John Patten [ holding answer 14 February1989] : Since 1979, the Home Office has taken, or been closely concerned with, a range of initiatives in respect of race relations and equal opportunity. These include :
The law relating to incitement to racial hatred was strengthened by the introduction of part III of the Public Order Act 1986. Other amendments to the Race Relations Act 1976 extended its employment provisions to offshore employment ; applied it to decisions on planning and gave the Commission for Racial Equality power to issue codes of practice on rented housing. Under section 11 of the Local Government Act 1966, substantial funding has been directed by the Department to local authority services addressing the special needs of ethnic minorities of Commonwealth origin, for example for teaching English as a second language and for promoting better access to a wide range of services. The amount of local authority expenditure supported by this 75 per cent. grant has increased from £46.2 million in 1979-80 to an estimated £140 million in 1988-89. At the same time, the criteria for grant have been successively revised in the interests of ensuring that work is targeted and expenditure represents value for money. The report of an efficiency scrutiny, currently under consideration, provides an opportunity further to improve the effectiveness of the system.
Grants have also been made by the Home Office to national and key local organisations working to relieve racial disadvantage. These, and section 11 grants, support the ethnic minority business initiative under which the business advice needs of multi-racial communities are met by specially tailored enterprise agencies or outreach workers. EMBI is helping ethnic minority businesses to achieve their full potential within the mainstream economy and is stimulating the growth of new business.
The Department continues to support the Commission for Racial Equality in its work towards the elimination of discrimination and promotion of equality of opportunity and good relations between people of different groups. Its own Advisory Council on Race Relations continues to provide Ministers from all Government Departments with useful advice on race relations issues. Its two community relations consultants work within the Home Office and inter-related services to assist consideration of race relations policies and their implementation, particularly through training. Firm but fair immigration controls, which have a place in our strategies for good race relations, have been maintained and a rolling programme of visits to community relations councils and other ethnic minority organisations instituted to further understanding of policy and procedures. In furtherance of its commitment to treat all its customers and staff fairly, regardless of race, colour or ethnic or cultural origin, the Immigration Department has issued a policy statement on race relations to all its staff.
A ministerial group on women's issues was set up in 1986 under Home Office chairmanship. It published in 1987 the Government's response to the forward -looking
Column 15strategies for the advancement of women which were adopted at the 1985 world conference at Nairobi, which ended the UN decade for women. The group also oversaw the preparation of the initial report to the United Nations on the UN convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, which was ratified by the United Kingdom in 1986.
The procedure for making appointments to public bodies was reviewed with the object of making information on the appointments and the qualifications required available to women's organisations, and of ensuring that suitable women are included on short lists for appointments.
Equal Opportunity and Race Relations--General
Model guidance is being issued to all Departments to ensure that officials consider the equal opportunity and race relations aspects of all policy proposals to ensure that they comply with the Government's legal obligations and commitment to equality of opportunity.
Race Relations--Criminal Justice System
The Home Office has supported the police service in a wide range of initiatives including its increased recruitment of police officers from the ethnic minorities, improved training, the formation of community relations departments and policies for tackling racial harassment. In addition, racially discriminatory behaviour has been made an offence under the police discipline code.
The Department is committed to the elimination of racial harassment and, amongst other things, has led an interdepartmental working group on racial attacks and harassment. This group has examined the scope for a multi- agency approach for dealing with racial harassment and will publish its report shortly.
Home Office circular 75/88, introducing the Home Office statement on race issues in the probation service, asked each area committee to adopt and publicise a similar policy and provided a check list to monitor progress. Ethnic monitoring of students sponsored by the Home Office for certificate in qualification for social work courses has started and, following two surveys, the results of which were published in two Home Office statistical bulletins, work is progressing towards a permanent system of monitoring the probation caseload and probation staff.
In 1986, a public policy statement dealing with race relations in prisons was issued : race relations liaison officers have been appointed at all establishments and in most establishments there is also a race relations management team. A directory and guide on minority religious faiths in the prison service has also been issued, and monitoring of the ethnic composition of prisoners has been introduced together with local monitoring of regime services and activities. The provision of race relations training has been increased at all levels.
Equal Opportunity--Criminal Justice System
The Government gave support to the passing of the Sexual Offences Act 1983 which increased penalties for attempted rape and indecent assault and penalised kerb-crawling.
In 1986, a circular was issued to the police urging them to improve their assistance to women who have been the victims of violent attack. The Criminal Justice Act 1987 extends anonymity for rape victims and provides for compensation payments to women who keep a child conceived as a result of rape.
Column 16The Home Office as Employer
Since 1979, an equal opportunities policy as it relates to staff has been formally promulgated, with two equal opportunities officers to ensure policy is put into practice. To promote opportunities for women, a number of measures, including facilities for part-time working, job-sharing, flexible working hours and arrangements for special leave to cope with domestic difficulties have been introduced or extended. Opposite sex postings in the prison service have recently been introduced to broaden career opportunities. Since 1987 all recruitment schemes have been monitored. Over 5 per cent. of Home Office respondents to the staff in-post surveys of ethnic origin say they are from an ethnic minority. Recruitment advertising campaigns take account of the need to attract ethnic minority applicants, and the Home Office is currently taking part in a pilot scheme to provide training for near-miss EO candidates, which has attracted considerable interest among ethnic minority applicants.
Mr. David Evans : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many (a) stipendiary and (b) lay magistrates there are in England and Wales ; and if he will list the cities in England and Wales in which stipendiary magistrates operate.
In England and Wales on 1 January 1989 there were (a) 63 stipendiary magistrates and (b) 28,211 lay magistrates. Stipendiary magistrates regularly sit in Birmingham, Cardiff, Doncaster, Kingston upon Hull, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Merthyr Tydfil and Aberdare, Pontypridd, Salford, Sheffield and Wolverhampton. When necessary a stipendiary magistrate has been authorised to sit in another area for a period.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish in the Official Report (a) the volume and (b) locations in Wales at which discharges take place into the aquatic environment of (i) ethylene dichloride, (ii) perchloroethylene and (iii) trichloroethylene.
Mr. Grist : The information sought is not held centrally. Information concerning the content of consented discharges to the aquatic environment is available in the public registers maintained by the Welsh water authority, in compliance with section 41 of the Control of Pollution Act 1974.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : There are no current plans to construct additional lanes on the M4 in Wales. However, consultants have been appointed to undertake a study of traffic patterns on the motorway and trunk road network in south Wales area. This will identify if and where capacity is likely to be exceeded by future traffic demands.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish in the Official Report a list of those sections of the M4 motorway in Wales served by (i) two lanes in each direction and (ii) three lanes in each direction specifying the length to the nearest mile of (i) and (ii).
|Length ---------------------------------------------------------- Two lane motorway Junction 22 Newhouse-Junction 24 Coldra |12 Junction 29 Castleton-Junction 32 Coryton |8 Junction 38 Margam-Junction 42 Baglan |5 Juntion 44 Lon Las-Junction 49 Pont Abraham |12 Three lane motorway Junction 24 Coldra-Junction 29 Castleton |11 Junction 32 Coryton-Junction 38 Margam |25
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he has any plans to update the regulations governing (a) local authority planning powers and (b) environmental health controls in respect of the powers of local authorities to control or remove firms which undertake anti-social or unneighbourly activities under existing consent in residential areas.
Mr. Grist : The Government are currently reviewing the legislation relating to statutory nuisance and offensive trades. We have no plans to change local authorities' planning powers to deal with activities which have or do not need planning permission. Under section 51 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971, local planning authorities may require the discontinuance of any use of land or its continuance subject to conditions if it appears expedient to the proper planning of their area.
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether he has any plans to change the financial basis on which the price of a council house is calculated or the percentage discount available to a tenant who seeks to purchase their home.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what information he has as to the annual tonnage of imports landed at (a) Pembroke Dock, (b) Milford Haven and (c) Fishguard in each of the past 15 years ; and if he will indicate for each year the total tonnage for (i) the United Kingdom market and (ii) onward transhipment to a third country.
|c|United Kingdom imports through Milford Haven and Fishguard|c| |c|1972-87|c| Thousand tonnes |Milford Haven (including|Fishguard |Pembroke Dock) ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1972 |26,239 |42 1973 |32,113 |83 1974 |34,379 |82 1975 |26,315 |121 1976 |25,586 |71 1977 |19,026 |89 1978 |18,743 |108 1979 |17,539 |104 1980 |14,354 |139 1981 |10,932 |103 1982 |11,175 |128 1983 |7,984 |119 1984 |10,122 |131 1985 |10,664 |139 1976 |9,359 |193 1977 |7,151 |193 Notes: Figures compiled by the Department of Transport (1980-87) and the National Ports Council (1972-79) from annual traffic returns supplied by the ports. Figures for Pembroke Dock cannot be disaggregated from the data held for Milford Haven. Statistics on goods transhipped onward to a third country are not collected.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish a table showing the number of planning appeals lodged, together with the number granted by his Department, in respect of each planning authority in Wales, for each of the last three years.
Mr. Grist : Planning appeal records in Wales for years before 1989 were collated according to the district in which the planning application was lodged and not the planning authority responsible for determining the application. The figures for each district for 1986, 1987 and 1988 are shown in the following tables :
|c|Section 36 appeals: Wales|c| District 1986 1987 1988 |Received|Allowed |Received|Allowed |Received|Allowed ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Carmarthen |22 |9 |16 |3 |28 |3 Ceredigion |36 |10 |31 |8 |57 |8 Dinefwr |16 |8 |15 |6 |15 |1 Llanelli |16 |7 |30 |7 |21 |9 Preseli Pembrokeshire |10 |- |19 |2 |14 |6 South Pembrokeshire |22 |7 |14 |3 |21 |2 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Dyfed |122 |41 |125 |29 |156 |29 Afan<1> |4 |2 |9 |1 |4 |- Lliw Valley |22 |8 |31 |11 |26 |7 Neath |10 |2 |11 |3 |10 |5 Swansea |77 |27 |60 |18 |77 |18 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-West Glamorgan |113 |39 |111 |33 |177 |30 Brecknock |34 |9 |26 |6 |29 |4 Montgomeryshire |5 |3 |7 |2 |22 |3 Radnor |11 |1 |5 |2 |13 |3 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Powys |50 |13 |38 |10 |64 |10 Cardiff |58 |26 |70 |23 |80 |25 Vale of Glamorgan |83 |13 |72 |19 |64 |33 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-South Glamorgan |141 |39 |142 |42 |144 |58 Cynon Valley |17 |3 |14 |4 |22 |2 Merthyr Tydfil |16 |6 |10 |4 |21 |4 Ogwr |51 |6 |42 |8 |62 |12 Rhondda |19 |12 |10 |1 |14 |5 Rhymney Valley |15 |6 |16 |5 |16 |7 Taff Ely |40 |15 |38 |6 |21 |4 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Mid Glamorgan |158 |48 |130 |28 |156 |34 Aberconwy |30 |9 |33 |10 |34 |15 Arfon |26 |7 |22 |9 |20 |5 Dwyfor |20 |6 |31 |3 |34 |11 Meirionydd |22 |4 |12 |6 |16 |4 Ynys Mon |55 |18 |51 |19 |45 |27 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Gwynedd |153 |44 |149 |47 |149 |62 Blaenau Gwent |10 |6 |14 |- |7 |5 Islwyn |19 |6 |19 |4 |14 |9 Monmouth |59 |18 |70 |13 |83 |16 Newport |48 |24 |37 |6 |48 |10 Torfaen |36 |9 |19 |6 |26 |13 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Gwent |172 |63 |159 |29 |178 |53 Alyn and Deeside |16 |10 |37 |8 |24 |7 Colwyn |28 |14 |28 |7 |24 |6 Delyn |24 |3 |24 |5 |25 |4 Glyndwr |19 |4 |21 |6 |27 |4 Rhuddlan |22 |14 |23 |11 |22 |8 Wrexham Maelor |30 |10 |31 |13 |47 |20 |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- |-- Total-Clwyd |139 |55 |164 |50 |169 |49 <1> Now Port Talbot.
Mr. Win Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish the estimate made by each local authority in Wales of the cost of implementing and administering the poll tax, and the amount of grant each local authority will receive to cover its cost.
Mr. Grist : The individual estimates of local authority are not held centrally. After discussion with the local authority associations on an all -Wales basis, as is the normal practice, expenditure provision of £9 million was included in the 1989-90 RSG settlement to cover the cost of implementing the community charge. This was distributed between districts in accordance with a formula agreed with the associations and will count for grant support ; but RSG as such is not hypothecated to individual services. For capital, the estimate made by the Committee of Welsh District Councils of expenditure of £10.3 million in 1989-90 has been met in full in allocations. These have been distributed between districts in accordance with the recommendation of the committee.
Column 20Discussions on the cost of operating the new system in 1990-91, and the level of provision to be made, will start soon.
Mr. Win Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much money is being spent from public funds on behalf of the Welsh water authority on (a) television (b) newspaper advertising during the present financial year.
Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which nations of the European Economic Community will still be in a position to issue visas to Iranian business men in consequence of the Foreign Affairs Council decision of 20 February ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Waldegrave : The decision of the Twelve is not expected to affect the capacity of member countries to issue visas to Iranian business men. Iranian business men wishing to visit the United Kingdom must continue to apply for visas in third countries as before.
Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the average time taken to secure a visa by Iranian nationals at Abu Dhabi, Geneva and other embassies used for this purpose.
Mr. Waldegrave : The waiting time for Iranian and other visa nationals for personal interview, which is an essential part of entry clearance procedure, at the majority of diplomatic missions in Europe and certain parts of the middle east is currently less than three weeks. It can vary between two days (Athens and Madrid) and 20 weeks (Dusseldorf). Visit visas are usually granted within 48 hours of interview, except where reference to London may be necessary.
Mr. John L. Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Soviet Union about Inna and Semion Frumkin who have applied unsuccessfully for exit visas.
Mr. Waldegrave : Inna and Semion Frumkin have not previously come to our attention. We shall look into their case and consider what representations are appropriate. Any information my hon. Friend can supply will be gratefully received.
Mr. John Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Soviet Union about the fate of Dimitry Shchiglik who first applied for an exit visa in 1973.
Mr. Campbell-Savours : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonweath Affairs whether any of the documents submitted to Chief Superindent Howard Jones by his Department on the matter of Rudolf Hess are in all or in part forgeries.
Mr. Faulds : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps are being taken by Her Majesty's Government to ensure that Ethiopia's activities in the north of that country are brought to the attention of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights.
Mrs. Chalker : We have always made clear our deep concern about reports of atrocities committed against civilians in Eritrea and Tigre . We shall refer to these concerns under item 12 at the current session of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva.
Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he has received a report on the case of Mr. Charles Bester from Her Majesty's Ambassador to the Republic of South Africa ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Allan Roberts : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make representations on behalf of Mustafa Deprem, Suleyman Deprem and 11 others detained by the Turkish police in Gaziantep between 12 and 15 January.
Mrs. Chalker : No. We do not know the exact nature of the charges against Mustafa Deprem, Suleyman Deprem, and 11 others. In dealing with these and other similar cases, we expect the Turkish authorities to live up to all the internationally accepted standards concerning the treatment of detainees.
Mr. Wray : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent assurances he has received from his counterpart in the United States of America that the current policies of Her Majesty's Government and the European Community towards Iran, the middle east and against terrorism will not be undermined by negotiations or arms trade between that country and Iran.
Mr. Waldegrave : This is a matter for the United States Government. We welcome the strong support from President Bush on 21 February for the actions taken by the Twelve, in response to Iranian threats against Mr. Salman Rushdie and his publishers.
Mrs. Fyfe : To ask the Attorney-General how many cases of rape reported by the police to the Crown prosecution service were marked for no further proceedings in 1988 ; and if any of these were so marked because of shortage of staff.
The Attorney-General : I regret that the information as to the discontinuance of proceedings is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Proceedings for rape are discontinued only where, after careful consideration by legally qualified staff and in accordance with the provisions of the code for Crown prosecutors, it is decided that there is insufficient evidence to conclude that there is a reasonable prospect of a conviction, or, where the evidence is sufficient, that the public interest nevertheless does not require a prosecution.
The Attorney-General : The estimated net cost to public funds of the Crown prosecution service for the year 1989-90 is £175 million. This provision was included in the Government's expenditure plans 1989-90 to 1991-92, published in January.
Mr. Bermingham : To ask the Attorney-General what is the estimated cost to the Crown prosecution service of employing a barrister to conduct Crown court trials, particularising both the estimated salary and the establishment cost.
The Attorney-General : The hon. Gentleman's question depends on the assumption that rights of audience will be extended to barristers employed by the Crown prosecution service. Any estimate of the costs of employing a barrister to conduct Crown court trials would depend on the civil service grade accorded to the barrister in question, the location of the area in which he was employed, and the date that he was employed to perform such a function.
The Attorney-General : Based on expenditure to date of £240.3 million, the Lord Chancellor's Department estimates full utilisation of the provision of £283.2 million for the current financial year for administration of the courts and other offices. This figure is broken down by convenient category in Supply Estimates for 1988-89.
The Attorney-General : The net cost to public funds in 1987-88 of legal aid in civil cases was £178.0 million, and in criminal cases was £249.2 million. That is the last year for which figures are available. A breakdown of these figures is shown in the following table :
|Gross expenditure|Receipts<1> |Net expenditure |£ million |£ million |£ million -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Civil cases Civil legal aid |206.1 |88.9 |117.1 Advice and assistance |50.7 |3.3 |47.3 ABWOR |13.8 |0.3 |13.5 |--- |--- |--- Total |270.5 |92.6 |178.0 Criminal cases In magistrates' courts<2> |114.0 |1.8 |112.3 In the higher courts |100.1 |0.7 |99.4 Duty solicitor schemes |28.0 |- |28.0 Advice and assistance |9.8 |0.2 |9.5 |--- |--- |--- Total |251.9 |2.7 |249.2 <1> The receipts consist of moneys recovered by the Legal Aid Administration of the Law Society in respect of contributions from assisted parties, and costs and damages awarded in civil cases on which the Legal Aid Fund has a first charge. <2> These figures include payments and receipts in respect of legal aid in care proceedings which cannot be separately identified.
In addition the administrative cost of the Legal Aid Service in 1987-88 was approximately £37.5 million. This was made up of £25.5 million for the legal aid administration of the Law Society, £3.5 million for the DHSS assessment office, £0.6 million for the headquarters of the Lord Chancellor's Department, and approximately £5.4 million in the Crown and county courts and £2.5 million in the magistrates' courts.
Mr. Bermingham : To ask the Attorney-General how many civil servants were seconded from the Department of Trade and Industry to the Lord Chancellor's Department to assist in the preparation of the Green Paper ; and what was the cost of the secondment.
Mr. Bermingham : To ask the Attorney-General what research questionnaires and surveys were conducted in connection with the preparation of the Green Paper by the Lord Chancellor's Department ; and if he will make a statement.
The Attorney-General : The Green Paper on the work and organisation of the legal profession sets out from first principles the Government's provisional views on what the organisation of the legal profession should be in order to provide legal services of the right quality for the particular needs of the client. It does not proceed from material of the kind referred to, although certain published background material is referred to in the Green Paper itself.
Mr. Bermingham : To ask the Attorney-General whether any investigations were made by the Lord Chancellor's Department of the effect which permitting banks and building societies to conduct conveyancing and probate would have on solicitors' practices in small towns and rural areas ; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Dunwoody : To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1) if he will place in the Library a copy of the statement made by him to the producers of the programme "Fragile-Earth--Seal Mourning", with an explanation of the statistics therein ;
(2) what changes he intends to make to improve the accuracy of the information contained in his import statistics relating to harp and hooded seals.