Dr. Hampson : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science how many (a) civil servants with higher education responsibilities, and (b) Her Majesty's inspectors (higher education), UGC/UFC, and NAB/PCFC, have been employed in 1987-88 and 1988-89 ; and how many extra it is proposed to recruit in 1989-90.
|<1>1987-88|<1>1988-89|<1>1989-90 --------------------------------------------------------------------------- Civil Servants with responsibility for policy on higher education |57 |54 |51 HMI (Higher Education)<2> |150 |150 |150 UGC |70 |68 |- UFC |- |- |80 NAB |30 |33 |- PCFC |- |- |63 Notes <1> Staff in post on 1 October. <2> The majority of HMI with responsibilities in higher education also have further education responsibilities. It is not possible to disaggregate the time spent on higher education.
Most of the additional staff budgeted for in 1989-90 have already been recruited and are included in the third column. Any further net additions should not be significant.
Mr. Allen : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the average mileage per day travelled by the Minister for Overseas Development in performing her official duties ; and what was the figure for her predecessor.
Mrs. Chalker : Between mid-1988 and mid-1989 my predecessor, the right hon. Member for Bath (Mr. Patten) travelled over 100,000 miles, an average of nearly 300 miles per day, in the course of his official duties. I expect my travel to follow a similar pattern.
Mrs. Chalker : The ODA maintains a register of consultants but inclusion on this register does not imply that ODA approves of the firm or individual concerned, nor that they will necessarily be invited to tender for projects.
Mr. Stanbrook : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what arrangements have been made to include Hong Kong and other colonies in the arrangements for pensioners of Her Majesty's overseas Civil Service to include pre-appointment war service in the calculation of their pensions.
Mrs. Chalker : Any overseas pensioner from one of our dependencies who also receives a pension paid under the terms of the Overseas Pensions Act 1973, will be eligible for consideration under the terms of the Colonial Service Officers' Pensions Addition for War Service (United Kingdom) Scheme 1989.
We have written to Hong Kong and other dependencies whose expatriate pensions do not come within the scope of the Act, to ask if they will introduce arrangements which would parallel our scheme. Bermuda and the Cayman Islands have advised us that they have no pensioners to whom the terms would apply ; we still await replies from the others, including Hong Kong whose Government have previously expressed a desire to intoduce credit for war service.
Mr. Nigel Griffiths To ask the Prime Minister what steps are taken to encourage scientific civil servants working on areas related to public safety to draw public attention to threats to public safety.
The Prime Minister : This will depend on the circumstances in each case. In bringing matters to the attention of the public all civil servants are required to act in accordance with the principles concerning the provision of information set out in chapter 6 of the "Personnel Management Handbook", copies of which are available in the House Libraries.
Residential homes for |Net current expenditure |(1987-88) |(£) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The elderly |29,623,980 The younger physically disabled blind and deaf |1,869,453 Persons with a mental illness-Staffed homes |1,168,760 Persons with a mental illness-Unstaffed homes |11,287 Persons with a mental handicap-Staffed homes |5,947,987 Persons with a mental handicap-Unstaffed homes |43,406 Residential accommodation for mixed client groups |59,883
Mr. Peter Walker : I have met representatives of the Farmers Union of Wales on seven occasions and my officials have on 25 occasions. In addition there are frequent but irregular meetings with officials at the four divisional offices dealing with matters involving either individual farmers or of a more general, but essentially local, interest. Central records are not kept of these local meetings.
Mr. Grist : It is for the individual elderly person to select a home which suits his/her particular language requirements. In exercising their responsibilities, several registration authorities have issued guidance to proprietors on how to cater for the Welsh-language needs of residents.
Mr. Peter Walker : It is not possible to provide a definite and exhaustive list of questions which I might exceptionally decline to answer on grounds other than cost and commercial confidence. Each question will continue to be considered on its merits.
Mr. Michael : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether it was with his authority that Welsh Water plc joined with Saur UK Ltd. to form a joint subsidiary company to undertake a variety of commercial activities.
Column 338the letter dated 30 June entitled, land for low cost housing in rural areas in Wales draft planning guidance and (b) the authorities which were sent a copy of this letter.
(a) Clwyd County Council
Colwyn Borough Council
Delyn Borough Council
Glyndwr District Council
Rhuddlan Borough Council
Wrexham Maelor Borough Council
Dyfed County Council
Carmarthen District Council
Ceredigion District Council
Dinefwr Borough Council
Preseli Pembrokeshire District Council
South Pembrokeshire District Council
Gwent County Council
Monmouth Borough Council
Gwynedd County Council
Aberconwy Borough Council
Arfon Borough Council
Dwyfor District Council
Ynys Mo n--Isle of Anglesey Borough Council
Ogwr Borough Council
Powys County Council
Brecknock Borough Council
Montgomeryshire District Council
South Glamorgan County Council
Cardiff City Council
Vale of Glamorgan Borough Council
West Glamorgan County Council
Neath Borough Council
Port Talbot Borough Council
The Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast and Snowdonia National Park Committees also commented on the draft guidance.
No Community Council has submitted comments.
(b) All District and County Councils in Wales together with the three Welsh National Park Committees. The Welsh Counties Committee, the Council of Welsh Districts and the Welsh Association of Town and Community Councils were also consulted on the draft guidance.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales when his Department will pay the agricultural capital grant of £904.55 under the agriculture and horticultural development scheme in respect of sheep fencing for holding number 55/443/16 Mr. W. D. Harries, Crafty farm, Hayscastle cross, Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, which was submitted in May.
Mr. Frank Field : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what guarantees his Department has gained from the company EDS, awarded the contract to run the computer centre at Livingston, that a continuous service will be maintained.
Mrs. Beckett : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security whether he will place a copy of any guidance issued by the chief adjudication officer as a result of Commissioner's decision R(SB)6/89 in the Library.
Mrs. Beckett : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security, whether he will publish in the Official Report a table showing, for men and women aged 16, 20, 30 and 40 years in April 1988, the ages at which it would pay the person concerned to cease contributing to a personal pension or other money purchase scheme, assuming rates of return of 0.5 per cent. and 2.5 per cent. above the annual increase in average earnings.
Mr. McLeish : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will investigate the circumstances surrounding the visit to Ms. Marsha Basaj by two regionally based fraud investigators responsible to the Central Office for Scotland CN (Fraud) branch.
Mr. Patchett : To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how much the Government have spent on social fund loans and community grants ; how many people have been refused help by the social fund from its inception to date ; and if he will make a statement.
Information for the current year is available from the national summary statistics which are placed in the Library monthly. The latest month for which information is available is September 1989.
Column 340administration of the social fund following the report by the Social Fund Commission for 1988-89 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Scott : The Social Fund Commissioner's first annual report, which was published in July, discharged her responsibility to report annually on the standard of reviews by social fund inspectors. I was pleased to note that 90 per cent. of the decisions monitored "met fully or exceeded the required standard" and that of the remainder very few "were found to be fundamentally flawed". I agree fully with the Commissioner's conclusion that the results of her monitoring will encourage public confidence in the review system.
The Commissioner also made a number of recommendations to the Department. These are all issues on which the Department's views have been made known to the Commissioner, or on which the Department has already taken action. I understand that the Commissioner's next annual report will refer to this year's recommendations and the Department's response to them.
Mr. Snape : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the following totals at constant prices : (a) capital expenditure out of the public service obligation grant to British Rail and (b) other capital expenditure by British Rail authorised by his Department for each year since 1979.
Mr. Portillo : The public service obligation grant meets the difference between costs and revenues for grant-supported services. Eligible costs include depreciation, a supplement to fund capital renewals, and interest. Grant therefore provides support for capital investment, but grant is not allocated to particular categories of expenditure.
Figures for total BR investment are given in the table :
£ million 1989-90 prices |Total BR investment ------------------------------------------------------------ 1979 |518 1980 |529 1981 |433 1982 |352 1983 |347 1984 |368 1985-86 |491 1986-87 |475 1987-88 |594 1988-89 |600 Note:-1984-85 was a 15 month financial period. The 1984 figure is the 12 month internally reported result. Figures exclude the laying of continuous welded track which BR no longer classify as investment.
Manually kept records show that of approximately 15,000 letters received from hon. Members since January
Column 3411989, 378 are currently outstanding. These have raised complex questions or problems which inevitably take longer to research.
Mr. Amos : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, further to the answer to the hon. Member for Hexham on 10 January, Official Report, column 617, if he will list (a) those trunk road improvement contracts that have been awarded since the start of the financial year 1989-90. together with the name of the successful tenderer and the value of the contract, (b) those contracts on which tenders have been invited but contracts have not yet been awarded and (c) those contracts on which tenders have not yet been invited but are expected to be let by the end of the financial year 1989- 90.
Scheme and Successful |Contract Price Tenderer |£ million ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ M1 J34 Meadowhall Development<1>- Birse Construction |1.2 M3 Compton-Bassett Widening- John Mowlem |41.5 M20 Maidstone-Ashford (Contract 2)- Wimpey Construction |28.7 M40 Waterstock-Wendlebury Section- Fairclough/Alfred McAlpine |63.9 A23 Waddon Marsh Bridge-Balfour Beatty |2.7 A27 Brighton Bypass (Dyke Road/Patcham)- Alfred McAlpine |16.7 A41 Chester Improvement-Fairclough |17.5 A41 Bicester Bypass State 1-John Mowlem |4.7 A42 Castle Donnington North (Contract 1)- A F Budge (Construction) |24.7 A65 Addingham Bypass-Cumbrian Industrials |3.1 A69 Brampton Bypass-Cumbrian Industrials |4.9 A127 Rayleigh Weir GSJ-Christiani and Nielsen |11.8 A282 Dartford Third Crossing Approach Roads- Balfour Beatty |27.7 A303 Ilchester to South Petherton- Wimpey Construction |12.8 A406 Chingford Road to Hale Road- Cementation Construction |60.3 A604 M1-A1 Link: Contract 6 (Kettering-Thrapston)- A. F. Budge (Construction) |25.7 Contract 7 (Thrapston-Brampton phase 1)- Tarmac Construction |14.2 <1>Grant aided scheme.
Tenders have been invited for the following schemes and the contracts should be awarded before the end of the financial year :
Column 342A6 Quorn and Mountsorrel Bypass
A16 Boston Algakirk Diversion
A16 Louth Bypass
A23 Warninglid to Brighton (Sayers Common to Muddlewood) A43 Castle Donzington North (Contract 2)
A47 Castor and Ailsworth Bypass
A47 Eye Bypass
A418 Leighton Linslade Bypass
A523 Macclesfield Inner Relief Road
A604 M1-A1 Link :
Contract 1 (Catthorpe Interchange)
Contract 4 (Rothwell to Kettering)
Contract 5 (Kettering Southern Bypass)
A650 Drighlington Bypass
A1079 Market Weighton Bypass
Grant aided scheme
Subject to completion of statutory procedures further tenders for other schemes may be invited before the end of the financial year.