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Column 521Brentwood Tendring
Isle of Wight
Medina South Wight
Broadland South Norfolk
Breckland West Norfolk
Cherwell West Oxford
South Oxford Vale of White Horse
Babergh Suffolk Coastal
Arun Mid Sussex
Mr. Bill Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if there are any plans to hold further exercises of communications similar to the COMTEST 89 exercise held on 12 January ; if he has had any representations about the lack of translation capability for non-European languages highlighted by the COMTEST exercise ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. John Patten : COMTEST 89 was arranged by the Association of Chief Police Officers and funded by the Home Office. I understand a report on the exercise is now being drawn up and while we shall consider it carefully, it will be for ACPO to consider the operational implications and to take any decisions on the need for further exercises. No representations have been received about language problems.
Mr. Bill Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give details of expenditure on building maintenance at the civil defence college, Easingwold for each year from 1979 to the present time.
Year<1> |£ ------------------------ 1979-80 |34,049 1980-81 |47,858 1981-82 |83,032 1982-83 |32,037 1983-84 |34,094 1984-85 |42,276 1985-86 |59,763 1986-87 |75,482 1987-88 |200,190 1988-89 |165,284 <1> (1 April-31 March).
Column 522expenditure on building improvements and extensions at the civil defence college, Easingwold for each year from 1979 to the present time.
Mr. John Patten : Details of capital expenditure in the years 1979- 1984 are not available in the form requested and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. The information for subsequent years is as follows :
Year<1> |Minor works|Major works |£ |£ ------------------------------------------------ 1984-85 |27,082 |- 1985-86 |12,765 |- 1986-87 |29,538 |- 1987-88 |60,854 |- 1988-89 |47,714 |- <1> (1 April-31 March).
Mr. Bill Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will give current valuations for (a) the buildings, (b) the furniture, fixtures and fittings and (c) the land at the civil defence college, Easingwold.
Mr. Martin Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he will appoint a chairman to the firearms expert consultative committee set up under the provisions of the Firearms (Amendment) Act.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list for each port in England and Wales at which police including special branch officers, are stationed either on a full- time or part-time basis the following information : (a) the name of the relevant police force, (b) the number of full-time equivalent police officers stationed there or the number of police man hours, (c) the total direct costs associated with policing each port, (d) the total indirect costs associated with policing each port and (e) the amount of money provided to each police force in respect of policing each port.
Mr. Hurd : Special branch offices are stationed on a full-time basis at those seaports and airports in England and Wales which are designated under the Prevention of Terrorism (Temporary Provisions) Act 1989. In addition, uniformed police are stationed on a full-time basis at those airports in England and Wales which are designated under the Aviation Security Act 1982. The table shows which police force is responsible for the policing of each of the ports designated under these statutes. Police are also present on an ad hoc basis at a number of other ports in England and Wales.
The cost falls to the appropriate police authority and comes within the normal police funding arrangements. Under these arrangements the Home Office meets 51 per cent. of whatever a police authority spends on policing and
Column 523an additional contribution is made from central Government funds by way of block grant. It would not be right in the interests of national security to publish information about numbers of officers, police man hours, or the costs associated with the policing of individual ports.
Information is not held centrally for sea ports whose owners appoint their own constables under local and private legislation and where costs are met by the harbour authorities.
|c|Designated Ports under the Prevention of Terrorism|c| |c|(Temporary Provisions) Act 1989|c| |Force Area ------------------------------------------------------------- Seaports Fishguard |Dyfed-Powys Fleetwood |Lancashire Heysham |Lancashire Holyhead |North Wales Pembroke Dock |Dyfed-Powys Plymouth |Devon and Cornwall Port of Liverpool |Merseyside Poole Harbour |Dorset Portsmouth Continental |Hampshire ferry port Southampton |Hampshire Swansea |South Wales Torquay |Devon and Cornwall Weymouth |Dorset Airports Biggin Hill |Metropolitan Birmingham<1> |West Midlands Blackpool |Lancashire Bournemouth (Hurn) |Dorset Bristol |Avon and Somerset Cambridge |Cambridgeshire Cardiff |South Wales Carlisle |Cumbria Coventry |West Midlands East Midlands |Leicestershire Exeter |Devon and Cornwall Gloucester/Cheltenham |Gloucestershire (Staverton) Humberside |Humberside Leeds/Bradford |West Yorkshire Liverpool |Merseyside London-City |Metropolitan London-Gatwick<1> |Sussex London-Heathrow<1> |Metropolitan Luton |Bedfordshire Lydd |Kent Manchester<1> |Greater Manchester Manston |Kent Newcastle |Northumbria Norwich |Norfolk Plymouth |Devon and Cornwall Southampton |Hampshire Southend |Essex Stansted<1> |Essex Teeside |Durham <1> Also designated under the Aviation Security Act 1982.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimates he has as to the annual number of court hours which are lost as a result of the non-delivery or late delivery of prisoners to court ; and if he will make a statement as to the estimated cost.
Column 524often be possible to rearrange business so that court time is not lost. There is insufficient information on which to base an estimate of cost.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent examination he has made of the reasons for delays in courts trying cases down for hearing ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. John Patten We are carrying out a survey of the reasons for adjournments in cases before magistrates courts. A range of courts will take part in the survey in the last week in April.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimates he has to the annual number of (a) magistrates court, (b) Crown court and central criminal court cases which are delayed or postponed as a result of the non-delivery of the defendant to the court by the police or prison service ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. John Patten : This information is not routinely collected. We expect to obtain information relating to cases postponed in a sample of magistrates courts from our forthcoming survey of reasons for adjournments.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he will give for each police force area the average number of police officers involved each day in the transport of prisoners to and from court ; and what percentage of the average daily manpower of each force this represents ;
(2) if he will give for each police force the daily and yearly cost of providing transport for prisoners to and from court.
Mr. Douglas Hogg I refer my hon. Friend to the reply given today to a question from the hon. Member for Tooting (Mr. Cox) for the information which is available.
Mr. Sims : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department in how many operations firearms were issued to police officers in England and Wales in 1988 ; in how many of those operations shots were fired by police officers ; how many police officers are currently qualified to carry firearms ; and what were the equivalent figures for each of the previous five years.
Year |Number of operations |Number of times shots|Number of authorised |fired |firearms officers -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1983 |3,180 |3 |13,044 1984 |2,667 |6 |11,873 1985 |2,488 |7 |10,244 1986 |2,453 |1 |8,395 1987 |2,185 |7 |7,349 1988 |2,227 |2 |7,194
These figures show that over five years the police have been issuing and using firearms less often. The figures
Column 525show the continuing determination of the Government and of chief officers of police that the police use of firearms should remain a measure of the last resort, and that traditional methods of policing should continue.
Sir Eldon Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, pursuant to his reply of 8 March to the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds, Official Report, column 521, on what basis he determined in 1986 that the Property Services Agency site at Falmouth avenue, Newmarket, was too small to be redeveloped to accommodate civil servants located in Cambridge ; and what was, and is, the average number of square feet he requires per civil servant doing the type of work in which the Property Services Agency is engaged in its Cambridge and Newmarket offices.
The average masks a wide range of changes. In the six rate-capped authorities in London the average domestic rate poundage has decreased by 4.7 per cent. In Conservative boroughs the average rise is 7.6 per cent., compared wth 21.6 per cent. in those Labour boroughs which are not rate capped.
Mr. David Nicholson : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish in the Official Report the total rate in the pound payable by a resident in the London boroughs of (a) Lambeth, (b) Camden, (c) Islington, (d) Southwark, (e) Brent and (f) Haringey, including Greater London council, Inner London education authority and other precepts where appropriate, and the district of Taunton Deane, Somerset, in the years 1980-81, 1984-85, 1986-87 and 1989-90.
6 |c|Domestic Rate Poundage (P)|c| |1980-81|1984-85|1986-87|1989-90 ------------------------------------------------------ Lambeth |145.4 |233.1 |217.2 |202.6 Camden |118.4 |202.7 |209.4 |210.7 Islington |117.9 |233.5 |184.3 |224.4 Southwark |118.0 |260.5 |212.2 |193.5 Brent |109.5 |223.5 |223.5 |344.5 Haringey |131.5 |259.3 |267.8 |363.4 Taunton Deane |104.4 |140.7 |186.8 |247.7
Column 526from the recent Inland Revenue sample survey will have a rateable value between £1,000 and £7,500 in London and between £1,000 and £5, 000 elsewhere in England ; and what percentage of business premises will have a new rateable value between £7,500 and £22,500 in London and between £5,000 and £15,000 elsewhere in England.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : It is estimated that nearly half the properties covered by the Inland Revenue survey will have a new rateable value from 1 April 1990 of between £1,000 and £7,500 in London and between £1,000 and £5,000 elsewhere in England. Slightly more than a quarter of properties will have a new rateable value of between £7,500 and £22,500 in London, and slightly less than a quarter between £5,000 and £15,000 elsewhere in England.
This information is based on a sample survey of the effects of the revaluation of non-domestic properties and the introduction of a uniform business rate. The new valuations supplied for the sample of properties were best estimates, not actual revaluations. The results must therefore be treated with caution.
Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many executive officers, higher executive officers, senior executive officers and grade 7 (administration) staff were in post in the Crown Suppliers on 1 April.
|Number ---------------------------------------- Executive Officers |111 Higher Executive Officers |52 Senior Executive Officers |23 Grade 7 (administrative) |14
Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many executive staff, namely, executive officers, HEOs, SEOs and grade 7 (administration) have since 1 April 1988 (a) transferred from other parts of the Civil Service into those areas of the Crown Suppliers intended for sale and (b) been posted in following direct recruitment into the Civil Service.
Mr. Ridley : Since 1 April 1988, three executive staff have transferred from other parts of the Civil Service into those areas of the Crown Suppliers intended for sale ; and two administrative officers already in the Crown Suppliers have gained executive appointments in those areas through an open competition for recruitment into the Civil Service.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will set out the criteria he will apply in deciding to whom to sell the Crown Suppliers should appropriate legislation be obtained.
Ms. Walley : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what additional housing investment programme allocation he has made in respect of (a) the Galleys Bank estate in Kidsgrove and (b) the Park Lane estate in Biddulph, in respect of problems concerning defective housing ; what is the average allocation per affected dwelling in each estate ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Trippier : Additional housing investment programme allocations of £389,000 and £690,000 were notified to Newcastle-under-Lyme and Staffordshire, Moorlands councils respectively to help them meet their housing defects obligations. These allocations are not made for specific estates or properties ; it is for authorities to decide how to use them, together with their initial allocations and any other resources they have available.
Mr. Summerson : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he has reached a decision on proposals to amend the housing defects provisions following consultations with interested bodies.
Mr. Trippier : Yes. In the light of helpful comments from local authority associations, home owners groups and other interested bodies, we have decided to introduce certain amendments in the current Local Government and Housing Bill. This should help achieve a sound and practical streamlining of the housing defects scheme for the benefit of owners and local authorities alike. On the basis of consultations in Scotland, the Scottish Office proposes to introduce similar amendments to the parallel Scottish housing defects legislation.
The main proposal is for the taking down and reconstruction of an individual property, in an equivalent position, to be treated as reinstatement under the scheme so that grant-aid can be made available. Although somewhat less radical than our consultation suggestion, it would be more in line with Housing Defects Act reinstatement and, in certain circumstances, could offer a sensible and cost-effective alternative to reinstatement, provided that it is in accordance with the Act's other conditions. We also intend to bring eligible "shared owners" within the scheme by requiring local authorities to submit schemes for the Secretary of State's approval ; and to allow the Secretary of State to extend the present two-month period for deciding local designations, where he needs more information.
Column 528We also propose a minor clarifying amendment to make it explicit that local authorities should decide owners' applications as soon as reasonably practicable.
We have decided at this time against the introduction of the proposed package of lifting Government-set limits on local authority reinstatement grants, with a revised degree of Exchequer contribution : consultees' responses generally favoured retaining existing controls, for the time being, to help ensure reinstatement is carried out cost effectively under the scheme.
Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many units of accommodation his Department estimates were brought into letting for homeless households (a) in Greater London, (b) in the south- east outside London and (c) in England as a whole, through local authority schemes to give existing council tenants cash incentives to buy a property on the open market (i) in 1986-87, (ii) in 1987-88 and (iii) in 1988-89 ; and at what average cost.
Mr. Trippier : Regional and national estimates are not available. An exploratory research study of the majority of those Brent and Bromley tenants who received cash payments for home purchase in 1986 was published in May 1988 and a copy was placed in the Library. The department expects that the further studies of schemes in Tauntan Deane, Southend and Croydon will be received shortly from the survey organisation.
Grants paid under section 129 of the Housing Act 1988 will be monitored for 1989-90 and subsequent years.
Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list each scheme selected for an additional allocation of housing investment programme funds, under the homeless initiative promoted by his Department's Estate Action team (a) during 1987-88 and (b) during 1988-89 ; how many units of accommodation each scheme brought into use for homeless households ; and whether each scheme provided permanent or temporary accommodation for homeless households ; and what was the date of completion of each scheme.
Mr. Trippier : Additional allocations under the Estate Action homelessness initiative have been made for the following schemes in 1987-88 and 1988-89. According to information supplied by local authorities all schemes were completed within the financial year in question.
Local Authority |Scheme |Number of units brought |Permanent/temporary |Allocation 1987/88 £ |Allocation 1988/89 £ |back into use |accommodation ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Camden |Various |35 |permanent |- |632,000 Hammersmith and Fulham |White City |56 |permanent |349,000 |- Tower Hamlets |Ocean |20 |permanent |126,000 |516,000 Middlesbrough |Broughton Avenue |6 |temporary |12,900 |122,640 South Tyneside |Tyne Dock |16 |permanent |55,000 |- Bradford |Woodside |14 |permanent |37,000 |- Bradford |Pennington Terrace |22 |permanent |- |533,564 Leeds |Gipton |10 |permanent |200,000 |- Sheffield |Various |57 |permanent |560,000 |- Wakefield |Airedale |16 |permanent |90,000 |- York |Various |22 |permanent |62,700 |- Nottingham |Macedon Trust |7 |permanent |- |150,000 Rochdale |Smallbridge |13 |temporary |- |150,000 Blackpool |Mereside |24 |permanent |- |269,500 Guildford |Guildford Park and Westborough|17 |permanent |57,500 |-
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what additional funds are being made available to English Heritage in respect of the archaeological diggings in Lower Thames street ; what further action his Department is taking ; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : I refer the hon. Member to my replies to the hon. Member for Newham North-West (Mr. Banks) on 18 April, at columns 77-78. English Heritage has not asked for additional funds for this purpose.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what consideration he has given to the effects of the introduction of the community charge on the tenants of almshouses ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Gummer : We considered the position of people in various types of accommodation when deciding on the definition of hostels, the residents of which will be exempt from the community charge. Our conclusion was that, in general, only establishments offering a high level of care should qualify. The tenants of almshouses will be able to apply for rebates of up to 80 per cent, if their incomes are low. Those in receipt of income support will have their income support increased to help them meet their 20 per cent. community charge payment.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) if he intends to publish guidelines for private landlords on the need to deduct rates from combined rent and rates charges with the introduction of the community charge in April 1990 ;
(2) what protection will be offered to tenants in the private rented sector, who presently pay combined rent and rates charges, with the introduction of the community charge in April 1990.