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Rents into Mortgages Scheme

Mr. French : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he has received any representations on the introduction of a rents into mortgages scheme for council tenants in England, similar to the one proposed for Scotland.

Mr. Trippier : My hon. Friend and a small number of members of the public have made such representations. The scheme announced on 11 May is confined to tenants of Scottish Homes and does not extend to local authority tenants.

Rent and Rate Arrears

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations he has received concerning (a) local authority members who are tenants of the same authority in arrears with their rents and (b) such members in arrears with their rates ; and whether he has any proposals to deal with the rent or rate arrears by councillors.

Mr. Trippier : I have received various representations. It is obviously destructive to effective rent collection if those elected to local authorities do not set an example by not getting in arrears. I am considering whether it would be desirable to introduce arrangements whereby any allowances due to a councillor could be offset against significant sums that that councillor may owe to the authority.

Sports Council

Mr. Meale : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he last met the chairman of the Sports Council.

Mr. Moynihan : I refer the hon. Member to the answer which I gave earlier today to the hon. and learned Member for Fife, North-East (Mr. Campbell).

Hostels

Mr. Randall : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how much has been spent by his Department since 1981 on hostels which are financed and managed through the Department of Social Security system.

Mr. Peter Lloyd : I have been asked to reply.

Before 31 March 1985 the Department's accounting system did not specifically identify expenditure on its hostels (known as resettlement units). Also, up to 31 March 1987, most of the resettlement units were jointly run with the Department's re-establishment centres. Therefore, separate expenditure details for resettlement units are available only from 1987-88 after the closure of the re-establishment centres. Gross expenditure including that paid to PSA for certain maintenance work was as follows :


Column 497


          |£ million          

------------------------------

1985-86   |<1>12.5            

1986-87   |<1>11.5            

1987-88   |12.1               

1988-89   |<2>12.5            

<1>Includes expenditure on    

re-establishment centres.     

<2>Forecast.                  

SCOTLAND

Electricity

Mr. Steel : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he intends to ensure that independent electricity producers in Scotland will be allowed equal access with the North of Scotland Hydro-Electric Board and the South of Scotland Electricity Board to the distribution network after privatisation.

Mr. Lang : Yes. There will be use of system arrangements which will ensure that independent power producers have access to the transmission and distribution systems of the Scottish utilities on an equitable basis. The principles for providing access and the structure of charging will be set out in the licences granted to the successor companies of the Scottish electricity boards and will be overseen by the Director General of Electricity Supply.

Forests (Privatisation)

Mr. Stern : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he has any plans to extend private ownership of forests in Scotland.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : I refer the hon. Member to the reply that my right hon. and learned Friend gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Dumfries (Sir H. Monro) on 16 June 1989 at columns 544-45.

Community Charge

Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many people in Scotland have paid the community charge ; and how many have not.

Mr. Lang : The information requested is not available at present.

Nature Conservancy Council

Mr. Maclennan : To ask the Secretary State for Scotland if he will list by region the number of land agents employed by the Nature Conservancy Council.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 27 June 1989] : The Nature Conservancy Council has advised me that the number of land agents currently employed by the council in its Scottish regions is as follows :


                  |Number       

--------------------------------

North West region |2            

North East region |0            

South West region |1            

South East region |1            

The land agency complement in Scotland is 10 and efforts are being made to recruit the balance.


Column 498

Sites of Special Scientific Interest

Mr. Maclennan : To ask the Secretary State for Scotland if he will list by region the number of management agreements made between the Nature Conservancy Council and landowners in 1988 and each of the preceding two years.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 27 June 1989] : The Nature Conservancy Council has advised me that the numbers of management agreements made in its Scottish regions in the years 1986-87 to 1988-89 were as follows :


                  |1986-87|1987-88|1988-89        

--------------------------------------------------

North West region |13     |17     |12             

North East region |16     |15     |18             

South West region |10     |25     |9              

South East region |9      |19     |5              

Mr. Maclennan : To ask the Secretary State for Scotland what is the average time taken between notification by the Nature Conservancy Council of its intention to place a restriction on certain farming activities on a site of special scientific interest and the reaching of a management agreement with the landowner.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton [holding answer 27 June 1989] : The notification of land as a site of special scientific interest by the Nature Conservancy Council does not restrict existing farming activities. Where such activities are damaging to the special interest, they may be restricted only under a voluntary management agreement. Where a farmer proposes changes in activity he is obliged to serve notice on the NCC which if it wishes to restrict such activities will, within four months, offer to negotiate a management agreement. For the length of time taken to negotiate a management agreement I would refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Environment on 14 February 1989 to the hon. Member for the Isle of Wight (Mr. Field), column 189.

NORTHERN IRELAND

Dogs

Sir Michael McNair-Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether the dog registration scheme in the Province, set up under the Dogs (NI) Order 1983, is enforced by dog wardens ; how many stray dogs are collected annually ; how many dogs have been put down annually since the order was introduced.

Mr. Viggers [holding answer 19 June 1989] : The provisions of the Dogs (NI) Order 1983 are enforced by Northern Ireland's 26 district councils, each of which employs dog wardens. The other information requested is as follows :


                         |Stray dogs collected    |Dogs put down (including                         

                                                  |at owners' expense)                              

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1984                     |8,297                   |7,828                                            

1985                     |11,306                  |10,567                                           

1986                     |10,833                  |10,384                                           

1987                     |10,520                  |10,575                                           

1988                     |11,888                  |11,907                                           

Sir Michael McNair-Wilson : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many dogs are licensed by district councils under the Dog (NI) Order 1983 ; what have been the totals in 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987 and 1988 ; and if he will state (a) the amount of revenue generated by the scheme annually and (b) the cost of administration.

Mr. Viggers [holding answer 19 June 1989] : The number of dog licences issued under the Dogs (NI) Order 1983 and the revenue generated from licences is as follows :


                       |Number of dog licences|Licence revenue                              

                       |issued                                                              

                                              |£                                            

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

1984                   |84,137                |419,000                                      

1985                   |70,001                |348,000                                      

1986                   |69,046                |343,000                                      

1987                   |64,847                |320,000                                      

1988                   |70,315                |348,000                                      

The number of licences issued includes block licences (for three or more dogs). Information on the costs of administration is not collected centrally.

HOUSE OF COMMONS

Early-day Motions

Mr. Amess : To ask the Lord President of the Council how many early- day motions were tabled in each Session since 1966 ; and how many were subsequently debated on the floor of the House.

Mr. Wakeham : The information requested for the sessions 1966-67 to 1969-70 is as follows :


Session        |Number of EDMs               

---------------------------------------------

1966-67        |640                          

1967-68        |446                          

1968-69        |443                          

1969-70        |300                          

For information about subsequent sessions, I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Derbyshire, West (Mr. McLoughlin) on Monday 19 June, Official Report, column 34. The information requested in the second part of the question is not held in the form requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Amess : To ask the Lord President of the Council (1) if he will publish a list of early-day motions, other than


Column 500

prayers, debated on the Floor of the House in parliamentary time provided by the Government in each Session since 1966.

(2) if he will publish in the Official Report a list of early-day motions, other than prayers, debated on the Floor of the House since 1966.

Mr. Wakeham : I regret that this information is not held in the form requested and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Private Members' Bills

Mr. Amess : To ask the Lord President of the Council if he will publish in the Official Report a list of private Members' Bills where a division took place on Second Reading and where the Bill received the Royal Assent in each Session since 1966.

Mr. Wakeham : Since the 1966-67 Session, the following private Members' Bills have received Royal Assent having previously been read a Second time on a Division :


                           |Year           

-------------------------------------------

Divorce Reform Bill        |1968-69        

Conservation of Seals Bill |1969-70        

Mr. Amess : To ask the Lord President of the Council if he will seek to amend Standing Order No. 90 so as to provide that, for private members' Bills, not fewer than 20 hon. Members rising in their places shall be required to constitute objection ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Wakeham : I have no plans to do so.

Procedure Committee Reports

Mr. Amess : To ask the Lord President of the Council what representations he has received concerning the Procedure Committee's reports on use of time on the Floor of the House and private Members' time ; how many supported the implementation of these reports ; and how many expressed an opposite view ; and what percentage the latter represents of the former.

Mr. John Wakeham : Since my reply to a similar question by my hon. Friend on 23 May at column 509, I have received one further letter which was in support of the recommendations in the two reports so far as they relate to private Members' time.


 

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