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Mr. Alison : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will express the salary received by a primary school teacher at the top of scale 2 in 1973-74 in current day's prices ; and what salary a primary school deputy head receives at the present day.
Column 22basic salary of £2,699. This is equal to £13,358 at April 1989 prices. The salaries of deputy head teachers vary acording to the size of the school. The deputy head of a typical (group 4) primary school now earns £16,809.
Mr. Morley : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to ensure that all state nurseries are made aware of their right to claim reimbursement for school milk supplied to their children under the Welfare Food Regulations 1988.
(2) what information he has concerning current research projects studying the detection and alleviation of retinal conditions.
Mr. Jackson : The Medical Research Council which receives a grant-in -aid from this Department, is the main agency through which the Government fund medical research in the United Kingdom. The council determines its own priorities for the support of research, with advice from its expert boards and committees. In 1987-88, the last year for which figures are available, the MRC spent £134,000 on research relevant to retinal conditions.
I understand from the MRC that one of the major current interests in research on retinal conditions, and particularly in connection with retinitis pigmentosa, relates to the genetic basis of such diseases. This is the focus of work generally at the MRC human genetics unit which is located at the western general hospital, Edinburgh. Specifically, the unit is undertaking the following studies concerning retinitis pigmentosa :
i. DNA sequence markers in single gene disorders ;
ii. Mapping the x-linked retinitis pigmentosa gene with a view to the development of clinically useful probes.
Some support for research on retinal conditions may also be provided by this Department through UFC block grants to universities and medical schools.
Mr. Amess : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) whether any public funded current or proposed research project into genetic handicap involves the use of the human embryo ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) whether the Medical Research Council is involved in any research project into genetic handicap which necessitates the use of the human embryo ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Jackson : I understand that the Medical Research Council is involved in research at the Hammersmith hospital on the pre-implantation diagnosis of genetic disease ; and at Edinburgh and Oxford, on the development of techniques for the diagnosis of genetic handicap. There is other research concerning pre-implantation diagnosis at Bourn hall, Cambridge, on sexing of human embryos ; at Hammersmith hospital, for prevention of genetic diseases ; and at Oxford by the
Column 23Cancer Research Campaign on derivation of cell lines from the human conceptus to investigate the growth regulation of embryonic and tumour cells.
Mr. Blair : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what plans he has to disperse staff from his Department in London to Darlington ; how many staff are involved, and in what grade ; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Rumbold : Government policy requires Departments to review the location of their work with a view to relocation where advantageous. The Department is accordingly considering whether there is scope for relocation of any of its headquarters based activities and, if so, where such activities would be best placed. Relocation of work to Darlington is amongst the options under consideration.
Mrs. Margaret Ewing : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he will implement the recommendation of the Grant committee, Cmnd. 3248, that both actions of adjudication in implement and actions of adjudication for debt should be competent in the sheriff court.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : As part of its second programme of law reform, the Scottish Law Commission has inititated consultations on proposals for the reform of the law on adjudications for debt and related matters. Its report is awaited.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what information he has on the amounts of nuclear wastes, spent fuel and plutonium which will be inherited by Scottish Nuclear Ltd. from the South of Scotland Electricity Board after privatisation.
Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is his policy on the funding of a unit for liver transplants in Scotland ; and what recent discussions have been held on such a proposal.
Column 24liver transplant facilities in Scotland. Members of the committee have visited existing transplant units at Birmingham and Leeds. They have also had recent discussions with clinicians who have an interest in the provision of a liver transplant service in Scotland. When I have received the committee's advice I shall look at what needs to be done.
Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland when he expects the remaining seven health boards to operate a computerised cervical cytology call/recall scheme for women aged 20 to 65 years at three -yearly intervals.
Mr. Rifkind : We asked health boards to establish a computerised call/recall cervical cancer screening service for all women in Scotland aged between 20 and 60 years of age at five yearly intervals. Of the five health boards which have not yet introduced a computerised system, Grampian and Shetland health boards intend to do so during July, Orkney health board during August, Dumfries and Galloway health board during September and Lothian health board during December 1989.
(2) what information he has on the number of consultants in each health board who take their full allocation of study leave.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : Health boards provide financial resources to enable consultants to take study leave and boards also provide staff with information on suitable courses. The question of what study is appropriate is essentially a professional matter for the individual consultant to decide.
Mr. Galbraith : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will give for each of the last five years for which figures are available the amount paid to individuals in expenses for local planning appeals.
Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations he has received from forest tree nurserymen and other forestry interests concerning the effects which the ending of schedule D reliefs for investment in forestry is having on the sale of young trees for planting.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : Representations on this subject have been received by my right hon. and learned Friend and by other Ministers from the Horticultural Trades Association, from six hon. Members on behalf of four nursery managers and from one nursery manager directly.
Mr. Allan Stewart : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he will announce the fees to be charged to students attending Scottish institutions other than universities in the academic year 1989-90.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : For the academic year 1989-90, my right hon. and learned Friend has prescribed the following fee levels for home students and for students from other European Community (EC) countries on full-time advanced courses in the central institutions and colleges of education (fees for 1988-89 are shown in brackets) :
|£ |£ ------------------------------------------------------------- Postgraduate courses |1,890 |(1,800) Undergraduate and equivalent courses |607 |(578)
My right hon. and learned Friend has decided that with effect from the academic year 1990-91 the fee levels he will prescribe will relate only to the maximum amounts for the reimbursement of fees through the awards system, so that the colleges will be free in practice to set fees above this level if they so wish.
For non-advanced courses, the central institutions and colleges of education will be invited to set their own fees, having regard to fees charged for comparable courses at local authority further education colleges.
Fees for home and other EC students on courses at local authority colleges are the responsibility of the local authorities. I understand that the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities has decided to recommend fees for such students as follows :
|£ |£ ------------------------------------------------- Advanced full-time courses |610 |(578) Non-advanced full-time courses |502 |(440)
For overseas students the Government's policy is that students should pay fees that cover the cost of their education. Local authorities and institutions are free to determine the fees to be charged in accordancee with that policy, and in the light of their own circumstances. I understand that COSLA has decided to recommend to local authorities the following fees for students at local authority colleges paying the overseas rate :
|£ |£ --------------------------------------------- Advanced courses |4,145 |(3,890) Non-advanced courses |2,285 |(2,145)
Column 26flowers. The board has committed funds to improving the appearance of the wards at Lennox castle, of which I note that the hon. Member has been critical.
Mr. Sean Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) what additional costs have been incurred in the change in organisation from the Dental Estimates Board for Scotland to the Dental Practice Board ; and whether he will itemise the main headings of expense ;
(2) whether the change from the Dental Estimates Board for Scotland to the Dental Practice Board has been accompanied by any additional employment of personnel ;
(3) whether he will list the main administrative categories of personnel in the Dental Practice Board for Scotland.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The change in the board's name to reflect its functions more accurately has not resulted in additional costs or personnel. The main administrative categories of personnel are set out below.
Whitley Council Grade |Numbers as at 1 June 1989 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Grade 18 |1 Grade 14 |1 Grade 4 |3 Executive Officer (2) |2 Grade 1 |11 Higher Clerical Officer |46 Clerical Officer |75 Machine operator-typist |31 Part-time Clerical Officer |.5 |----- Total |171.5
Mr. Michael Forsyth : A working party was set up in October last year to consider changes in the current provision of dental education in Scotland. The working party, as part of its remit, is examining the needs of the NHS in Scotland for an adequate supply and distribution of dentists, and for effective and high quality programmes of postgraduate and continuing education. I expect its report shortly.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : Since taking office we have increased the planning figure for local authority spending on social work services by 67 per cent. in real terms. In the current year the planning figure is £461.7 million, 13 per cent. higher than last year and 6 per cent. higher than authorities' own budgets for last year. Within these resources it is primarily for local authorities in consultation as necessary with health boards and other interests to provide levels of community care provision appropriate to their area. More specifically, the Government are studying the report by Sir Roy Griffiths on community care and will bring forward proposals in due course.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he intends to encourage all local authorities in Scotland to introduce or extend a travel concessionary scheme to include people with mental health problems.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : Under the terms of the Concessionary Travel for Handicapped Persons (Scotland) Act 1980 any local authority may make arrangements for the granting of travel concessions to persons suffering from mental disorders. It is, however, for the local authorities to decide what type of scheme is appropriate to their areas.
Mr. Wray : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will detail the information gathered on the likely change of teacher numbers resulting from his proposals for opting-out schools and their devolved budgetary power.
Mr. Michael Forsyth : The recurrent grant to a self-governing school will be determined so that the school will be neither better nor worse off than it could reasonably have expected if it had remained under local authority management. The grant will thus reflect the education authority's spending on salaries, superannuation and national insurance for teachers. It will be for the board of management of each self-governing school to decide how to spend this grant and how many teachers it wishes to employ in that school.
Mr. Wray : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what response he has given to the Scottish section of the Civil Engineering Contractors regarding its objections to his paper on Scottish Enterprise.
Mrs. Ray Michie : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what representations he has received regarding payment of commercial rates and the community charge by guest-house owners and bed-and-breakfast landladies in Scotland catering for more than six guests.
Mr. Lang : A number of representations have been received about the liability to non-domestic rates of properties which provide accommodation for tourists and which are also used in part as a sole or main residence. Decisions as to the value on which non-domestic rates are levied are for the assessor, subject to the appropriate appeal procedures.
Column 28with the approval of the Treasury. Any payments due once claims have been assessed will be presented for the approval of Parliament in the form of a supplementary estimate in due course. The terms of the assistance made available were sent to every local authority in a Scottish Office circular (Finance Circular No. 6/89) dated 28 April 1989.
Mr. Rifkind : There is no minimum level of £120,000 for claims under the Bellwin scheme of special financial assistance to local authorities. However, on all occasions when assistance under the scheme has been made available, authorities have been expected to meet an initial tranche of emergency expenditure up to a threshold set to reflect the fact that authorities have statutory powers to deal with emergencies and are expected to plan accordingly. Thresholds, based on a proportion of their penny rate, ensure that the smaller the authority the lower the threshold.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many hectares of coniferous and deciduous wasteland, respectively, were planted under the new woodland grant scheme in the first 12 months of its operation.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : Grants are available under the new woodland grant scheme for the rehabilitation of neglected woodlands under 20 years of age, provided they contain an adequate stocking of suitable species and have not been previously grant-aided. In the nine months of 31 March 1989, the Forestry Commission had paid such grants under the scheme in respect of four hectares of conifer woodland and 26 hectares of broadleaved woodland.
Mr. Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland which media outlets were notified by the Scottish Information Office of the home visit of Mr. and Mrs. Gilchrist by the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State the hon. Member for Stirling (Mr. Forsyth) on Sunday 14 May ; and what advance notice of press involvement was given to Mr. and Mrs. Gilchrist.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : I refer the hon. Member to table 1 in the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys Monitor EL 89-1, from which the percentage change may be derived. A copy of the monitor is in the Library.
Mr. McFall : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what preparations are being made by his Department to improve communications with the continent via the south-east of England in preparation for the introduction of the single European market on 1 January 1993.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : My right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State has had meetings with the Chairman of the British Rail Board on how to ensure that Scotland benefits fully from rail links to the Channel tunnel. Section 40 of the Channel Tunnel Act requires British Rail to publish a plan by the end of 1989 setting out its proposals for international rail services through the Tunnel. British Rail are consulting widely with interested parties in the regions over the preparation of this plan. With regard to trunk roads, the A74 is being upgraded to motorway, thus linking the central Scotland motorway network to the M6/M1/M25 route, Scotland's essential link to the south and Europe. In addition, a major study into routes south of Edinburgh is nearing completion.
Mr. Bill Walker : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will indicate the nature of all funds granted to Scotland from the European Community in the period May 1979 to May 1989 ; and if he will give headings of the European fund titles and list the total value under each heading of funds granted to Scotland.
Mr. Ian Lang [holding answer 9 May 1989] : Scotland has been awarded some £1,400 million in grants during the period 1979-88 from the European Community's structural funds--the European regional development fund, the European social fund and the agricultural guidance fund. In addition, some £1,500 million has been awarded to Scotland from other Community sources, principally in the form of loans from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Investment Bank. Details of the main funding sources are set out in the table below.
Awards 1979-88 |£ million --------------------------------------------------------- European Regional Development Fund |736 European Social Fund<1> |246 Agricultural Guidance Fund<2> |385 European Coal and Steel Community<3> |82 European Investment Bank |1,384 Notes: <1> Figures available only for 1982-88. Previously figures were not broken down into regions. <2> Excludes Scottish share of market support expenditure incurred by the Intervention Board for Agricultural produce. <3> Figure relates to article 56 reconversion loans. Regional breakdown of other ECSC assistance is not available.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will arrange for the Lord Advocate to make a study of the claims made by a random selection of legal firms in Scotland for visits to prisoners in Barlinnie, Saughton, Perth, Shots and Peterhead prisons, using the legal aid system ; and if he will set out the findings against the actual entries made in the official visitors' records of those prisons of lawyers and other personnel from the firms studied.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 17 May 1989] : No. The administration of legal aid, including the settlement of solicitors' accounts, is the responsibility of the Scottish Legal Aid Board. Claims from solicitors are subject to examination, and the board's audit and investigation section would report any cases of possible fraud to the procurator fiscal. If the hon. Member has information which is relevant to the board's assessment of legal aid accounts, he should pass that to the board for consideration.
|£ ---------------------- 1987-88 |60,000 1988-89 |60,000
The three other principal schemes are : The Foreign and Commonwealth Office scholarships and awards scheme, the British Council fellowship scheme and the Department of Education and Science--overseas research students award scheme, for which the figures are :
|£ ---------------------- 1984-85 |86,400 1985-86 |51,200 1986-87 |72,600 1987-88 |73,800 1988-89 |92,000
Under the United Kingdom-Iraq financial protocols, the Government have negotiated the following Export Credit Guarantee
Department-backed credits during the past five years :
|£ ------------------------------------ 1984 |300 million 1987 |175 million 1988 |340 million
Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will ask the United Nations to investigate allegations of human rights violations, torture and genocide by the Iraqi Government against the Kurds.
Mr. Waldegrave : We have repeatedly made clear to the Iraqi authorities our concern at their failure to respect human rights, particularly those of the Kurdish community. We play a leading role in discussion of Iraqi human rights violations at the United Nations Commission on Human Rights. A strongly-worded British-sponsored resolution in March was blocked by an Iraqi procedural motion.
Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps have been taken this year to secure the release of Mr. John McCarthey, a hostage in Beirut ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Waldegrave : Before the break in relations with Iran, we raised the issue frequently with the Iranians. We have also raised the matter with other Governments and groups who might have influence on the hostage holders. Her Majesty's Ambassdor in Beirut remains active in a difficult and dangerous environment in following up all available information. We will continue to do the maximum possible.
Mrs. Chalker : Our main concern is to see Mr. Mandela freed unconditionally. Our efforts are devoted to that end. In response to a letter from Mr. Mandela, the ambassador said that he would welcome a fact- to-face discussion. We understand that it would be for Mr. Mandela formally to notify the South African authorities if he wishes to pursue this.
Mr. Lawrence : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will raise with the Soviet authorities the case of the long-term refuseniks Emanuel and Judith Lurie who have recently been refused an exit visa.
Mr. Waldegrave : We have raised the Lurie's case with the Soviet authorities on numerous occasions--most recently during Mr. Gorbachev's visit to Britain in April. The latest Soviet response was that their application to emigrate is currently under consideration by a Supreme Soviet commission. We shall not let up until they are allowed to leave.
Mr. John L. Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Russians about their continued failure to grant an exit visa to George Belitsky.
Mr. Waldegrave : We have made repeated representations to the Soviet authorities about Dr. Belitsky, most recently during Mr. Gorbachev's visit to Britain in April, and we will continue to press them until he is allowed to emigrate.