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Mr. McLoughlin : I understand that amendments to the manual of air traffic services in line with the joint airmiss working group recommendations have already been agreed and are included in the next amendment list to the regulations.
Mr. Home Robertson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will amend the air traffic regulations to establish the responsibility of an air traffic controller to instruct and advise pilots in order to ensure that they remain in regulated airspace even when such pilots accept a visual approach or other relaxation from full control, as recommended by the joint airmiss working group following the incident over Tranent on 2 August 1989.
Mr. McLoughlin : I understand that amendments to the manual of air traffic services requiring controllers to ensure that the clearances they issue do not allow aircraft inadvertently to leave regulated airspace have already been agreed and are included in the next amendment list to the regulations. Regulations allow captains of aircraft to make a conscious decision to leave regulated airspace should they so require.
Mr. Home Robertson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will take steps to ensure that civil pilots have readily available information as to the vertical limits of regulated airspace as recommended by the joint airmiss working group following the incident over Tranent on 2 August 1989.
Mr. McLoughlin : The Civil Aviation Authority has the statutory responsibility for the safety regulation of civil aviation. I understand that it is the CAA's view that the publication of the vertical limits of regulated airspace in the United Kingdom aeronautical information publication, on the CAA topographical maps and on commercially available approach charts and en route maps meets all reasonable requirements for the availability of this information.
Mr. Home Robertson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if, in the light of the deliberations of the joint airmiss working group into an incident over Tranent on 2 August 1989, he will now extend the area of controlled airspace around Edinburgh airport.
Column 651Mr. McLoughlin : The joint airmiss working group made no recommendation to change the dimensions of controlled airspace around Edinburgh airport. All regulated airspace in the United Kingdom is reviewed regularly to ensure that it remains appropriate to the traffic density. There are no plans to change the dimensions of the Edinburgh CTR/SRZ or those areas of the Scottish TMA associated with Edinburgh procedures.
Mr. Home Robertson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if, in view of the deliberations of the joint airmiss working group into an incident over Tranent on 2 August 1989, he will direct the Civil Aviation Authority to provide secondary surveillance radar at Edinburgh.
Mr. McLoughlin : As part of a national programme instituted before the Tranent airmiss secondary surveillance radar is being installed at Edinburgh airport and is expected to be operational before the end of May 1990.
Mr. John Carlisle : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport on what evidence and information he based his decision to decline the provision of a footbridge over the newly constructed A6 Barton-le-Clay bypass.
Mr. Atkins : The joint decision of the Secretaries of State for the Environment and Transport was based on evidence given at the public inquiries about forecast traffic flows, known pedestrian-cyclist movements and the estimated cost of a footbridge.
Mr. Portillo : Total local authority expenditure on all travel concessions for pensioners, disabled persons and children in 1989-90 is estimated at £350 million. No information is available on how much of this expenditure is on free bus travel for pensioners.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he has recently taken any initiatives to combat the environmental problems caused by lorries in residential areas and town centres.
Mr. Atkins : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced on 23 January the publication of two documents that address the environmental problem lorries can cause in residential areas and town centres. "Lorries in the Community" and the "Lorries and Traffic Management" manual were published following a lorry management study co- sponsored by my Department, the Civic Trust and the County Surveyors Society. Copies of these documents are in the House Libraries.
One of the aims of the trunk road programme is to improve the environment by removing through traffic from unsuitable roads in towns and villages. Since 1979, over 100 bypasses and relief roads have been completed. There are over 150 bypasses and relief roads in the current programme. Other roads also have a bypassing effect. New limits on the harmful gases which can be emitted by all kinds of vehicles have now been agreed in Europe. They are being introduced during the early 1990s. A second stage of limits is going to be discussed later this year. Limits will be set on particulates as well as on gaseous emissions. This means that in the future we can look forward to lorries and cars which are much cleaner.
New rules will mean that the noise from the heaviest lorries will almost have been halved during the last decade. The European Commission is now working on further proposals for tighter vehicle noise limits. The Quite Heavy Vehicle 90 project has also been undertaken. This has been a collaborative partnership between industry, Government and research organisations to develop techniques to reduce noise from heavy lorries. The project included research into developing quieter engines, exhaust system panels and the enclosures around engines.
Mr. Portillo : The Government have already approved a major programme of investment, which includes the modernisation of the Central line, improvements to Liverpool Street and Angel stations, and the purchase of new trains. We have made financial provision for the extension of the Jubilee line, for congestion-relief measures at the most overcrowded stations, for a substantial programme of train-refurbishment, and for the modernisation of the Northern line. We expect to take a decision later this year on the introduction of a Bill for a new line to relieve congestion in the central area of London. Such investments will benefit all passengers, but will be particularly welcome to those who travel at the busiest peak periods.
Dame Jill Knight : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he has now considered British Rail's formal investment case for the electrification of the Birmingham cross-city line ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Parkinson : I received British Rail's initial evaluation of tenders for electric rolling stock on 29 January 1990, and have now considered it in the light of earlier proposals for fixed works. The case for electrification is now fully established. I welcome the proposal. Passengers have had to put up with old and
Column 653worn-out trains for some time. The modernisation of this line will greatly improve the quality and reliability of the service for the people of the west midlands. The new rolling stock will offer a more comfortable ride, better lighting, sliding doors and faster journey times. The benefits will go wider than the cross-city line, as the stock will also be used on Coventry-Wolverhampton services in off- peak periods.
I have given approval to the whole scheme in principle and for works to electrify the line at a cost of about £18 million which will be completed by 1992. The scheme will be jointly funded by British Rail and the West Midlands passenger transport executive. British Rail will select the type of electric rolling stock that it wishes to purchase later in the year when it has decided which of the offers it has had from manufacturers will give best value for money.
Mr. Arbuthnot : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will set out the extent to which the proposal in the planning application No. 322/88, LRO(T) Reference GLRT 41 35027/3/0287, which the Department of Transport on 25 April 1988 directed the London borough of Redbridge to refuse, would have required modifications to the Made Line and Side Roads Order 1986.
Mr. Atkins [holding answer 2 February 1990] : The need to maintain minimum clearance of underground structures at Wanstead LT station would have required the centre line of the developers' wider tunnel to run about 1.5m north of that established for the Department's tunnel by the made London-Great Yarmouth Trunk Road (A12) (Eastway to Eastern Avenue) and (Slip Roads at Wanstead) Order 1986. The developers' tunnel needed to be wider to accommodate mechnical ventilation equipment made necessary by its extra length. That would have required republication of the line order. The planning application would also have affected slip roads at the Green Man interchange and in turn related made side road orders.
Mr. Arbuthnot : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what modifications have been made since the date of Made Line and Side Roads Order 1986 by the Department of Transport to the intended line of the proposed London-Great Yarmouth trunk road (A12) in order to take account of sight restrictions or for any other reason ; and whether such alteration will require modifications to the Made Line and Side Roads Order 1986.
Mr. Atkins [holding answer 2 February 1990] : The main line of the route is fixed by the London-Great Yarmouth Trunk Road (A12) (Eastway to Eastern Avenue and Slip Roads at Wanstead) Order 1986, made following the inquiry in 1983. The proposed line of the dual carriageway has remained unchanged since that date.
Mr. Jack : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what programmes designed to boost employment and training are available to employers in Lancashire ; and what they will cost during the financial year 1990-91.
Mr. Nicholls : All my Department's employment, enterprise and training measures are available to boost employment and training in Lancashire, as elsewhere. Measures available to employers and the self- employed include the jobcentre service, business growth training and the enterprise allowance scheme ; many employers also participate in programmes designed to equip the unemployed and young people for employment, such as employment training and YTS. My Department's expenditure plans for 1990-91 are contained in chapter 6 of the public expenditure White Paper, published last month.
Mr. Nicholls : Trainee choice will be widened under the new arrangements for youth training, to be run by training and enterprise councils from spring 1990 onwards. These arrangements will in themselves widen the range of training opportunities and offer higher level qualifications. The Government have no plans at present to give training grants directly to young people.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is his estimate of total Government spending on skills and competence for work and youth training programmes for 1989-90 and for 1992-93 ; and what is the cost (a) per capita of total population and (b) per trainee ; what is his estimate of spending for these purposes on the same basis in (i) Holland, (ii) West Germany and (iii) France for the latest available year.
Column 655The total spend on skills and competence for work is forecast at £2,481 million for 1989-90 and planned at £2,392 million for 1992-93. The cost per capita of the total population is £44.60 for 1989-90 and £42.62 for 1992-93. It is not possible to provide a cost per trainee, as some of the expenditure is on programmes not directed towards individual trainees. Comparable information is not available for Holland, West Germany or France.
Mr. Eggar : It is not the policy of the Employment Department to make public details of computer security systems, as such information would be of assistance to potential attackers. During the development phase of all computer systems, the Employment Department undertakes a structured analysis of security risks and requirements. The adequacy of the installed counter-measures is periodically reviewed throughout the lifetime of such projects. All security analysis draws on central guidance, the applications of which is kept under continuous review and has been tightened recently.
Mr. Tony Lloyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what response he proposes to make to the Commission for Racial Equality report, "Ethnic Minorities and the Graduate Labour Market" ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Nicholls : The CRE report "Ethnic Minorities and the Graduate Labour Market" makes a number of useful recommendations on action that could be taken to help improve the employment opportunities of graduates from the ethnic minorities. The recommendations are directed to institutions of higher education and employers, who, it is hoped, will note them and, where necessary, take appropriate action. Unnecessarily restricting access to employment and higher education opportunities for ethnic minority graduates, or potential graduates, is not only morally wrong but makes bad business sense, particularly in the face of the recent tightening of the graduate labour market.
Mr. Skinner : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many times the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service has been used to settle industrial disputes since 1979 ; and if he will publish a list of all references made and the outcome in each case.
Mr. Nicholls : Information on the overall number of disputes that ACAS has helped to settle is published in the ACAS annual reports, copies of which are held in the Library. The names of individual parties to such disputes, and the outcomes, are not comprehensively listed and this information is not available.
Mr. Jack : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what evaluation his Department has made of the potential gains to small business through the formation of consorzi ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Tim Eggar : Italian consorzi are based on the principle of small firms combining to undertake marketing, distribution and other activities together. This has clear potential benefits for the firms involved. It is, however, a matter for firms themselves to decide whether to opt for this way of organising their activities.
Mr. Nicholls : Pay in the north-west, as elsewhere, is generally a matter for employers and employees to decide for themselves in the light of all the relevant circumstances. Any unnecessary intervention by the Government could only be harmful to business and to prospects for jobs.
Mr. Alison : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list the requirements in section 6 of the Explosives Act 1875, which relate to an applicant's submission for a draft licence for a new factory or magazine, for consideration by the Health and Safety Executive of the environmental and social repercussions which might follow from the approval of the draft licence.
Mr. Nicholls : Section 6 of the Explosives Act 1875 requires that a new explosives factory or magazine shall not be established on a site except in a manner specified in the licence issued by the Health and Safety Executive. The terms of the licence usually specify matters entirely concerned with the safety and security of the explosives at the proposed site.
Section 7 of the Act requires that the local authority grants assent to such a factory or magazine and must hear the applicant and any persons objecting. At such a hearing environmental and social considerations in addition to safety and security matters may be discussed. In addition, a proposed development for an explosives factory is subject to the normal requirements of the planning legislation.
Mr. Alison : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what draft licence under the Explosives Act 1875 has been received, approved, or rejected by the Health and Safety Executive in relation to a new factory or magazine at Steeton Hall farm, South Milford, near Leeds.
Mr. Nicholls : There are no data available on trade unions that enable a full answer to be given. However, there is information relating to the divisions of the standard industrial classification. The most recent data come from a specially commissioned survey of employees conducted for the Department in February and March 1989.
Column 657Regarding trade union membership, the survey showed that only in one division of the standard industrial classification- -energy and water supply--does the level of trade union membership among employees exceed 75 per cent.
The survey also showed that in two divisions, over 75 per cent. of employees worked in establishments that recognised trade unions for purposes of collective bargaining. These are energy and water supply, and transport and communication.
Mr. Thurnham : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what were the total earnings before tax, now and in 1979, for those on half and three quarters average earnings, both in cash terms and inflation adjusted terms.
Weekly earnings in 1979 and 1989, in cash and real terms. |1979 |1979 |1989 |in cash|in cash|in cash |terms |terms |terms |£ |£ |£ ------------------------------------------------------- Half average earnings |44.6 |93.8 |119.9 Three quarters average earnings |66.8 |140.7 |179.8 Notes 1. Gross weekly earnings of all full-time adult employees. Figures as at April of each year. 2. 1979 real terms figures are the cash figures revalued to April 1989 prices using the RPI (all items) index. Source: New Earnings Survey.
Mr. Austin Mitchell : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment, after how long a delay and under what conditions those opting out of SERPS and claiming incentive payments to do so can rejoin the scheme later.
Mr. Livsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is the present number of environmental health officers presently employed by Welsh local authorities, listed by district area for the past five years ; and what is the present number of environmental health officer vacancies throughout Wales.
Column 658of the last five years is given in the table. It is not possible to identify separately the number of environmental health officers included in this number. Figures by authority are not available centrally, neither is information on vacancies.
Number of non-manual staff employed in environmental health<1> |1985 |1986 |1987 |1988 |<2>1989 ---------------------------------------------------------- Districts |833 |824 |815 |843 |862 Counties |14 |12 |12 |9 |11 |-------|-------|-------|-------|------- Total |847 |836 |827 |852 |873 <1> Full-time equivalents as at September for each year. <2> Figures for September 1989 are provisional.
Medical and dental staff (whole-time equivalents) in post at 30 September<1> |Number --------------------- 1979 |2,181 1988 |2,545
General medical practitioners<2> ( number) as at 1 October |Number --------------------- 1979 |1,339 1988 |1,599
Nursing and midwifery staff ( whole-time equivalents) in post at 30 September<1><3> |Number --------------------- 1979 |23,031 1989 |28,037 <1> Employed in the hospital and community service. <2> Unrestricted principals. <3> No adjustment has been made to take account of the change in working hours in 1980 from 40 to 37.5 hours a week.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will grant money to Clwyd county council as compensation for its unforeseen outlay consequent upon the anthrax outbreak at Llay ; and if he will make a statement.
Column 659and reflected in Clwyd county council's grant-related expenditure assessment for the rate support grant purposes.
Local authorities have discretionary powers to incur expenditure on unforeseen incidents such as the anthrax outbreak and would normally include an amount in their budgets for such contingencies. The Government recognise that it would be unreasonable for substantial extra expenditure incurred in exceptional circumstances to fall wholly upon ratepayers. Consequently, the Bellwin scheme, which is designed to deal with extraordinary costs arising from emergencies, allows for the provision of special financial assistance to local authorities in certain circumstances. We are ready to consider a detailed and fully costed application. But, on the information available to the Department we do not believe that the scale of additional expenditure in this instance would justify use of the scheme.
(2) if he will meet the Parent-Teachers Association of the Queensferry high school to discuss their concerns regarding the future of the high school ;
(3) if he will visit the Queensferry high school.
Mr. Grist : A comprehensive study of cancer treatment services in north Wales, commissioned by the Welsh Office, is presently the subject of wide consultation and responses have been invited by 31 March 1990. We do not propose to make any announcement until responses to consultation have been carefully considered.
Mr. Livsey : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what were the costs of collecting and administering the present rating system in Wales for the last five years ; and what is the expected cost of collecting and administering the poll tax.
Net current expenditure Year |£ million ------------------------------ 1985-86 |7.89 1986-87 |8.41 1987-88 |8.90 1988-89 |9.76 1989-90 |<1>9.80 <1> As recorded in local authority budgets for 1989-90.
The 1989 report of the expenditure sub-group to the settlement working group estimated that the cost of collection and administration of the community charge in Wales in 1990-91 would be £25.6 million.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, the community charge for 1990-91 for each of the county councils in Wales and his own assessment ;
(2) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, the community charge for 1990-91 for each of the district councils in Wales and his own assessment.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : We have received no information from local authorities in Wales on 1990-91 community charge levels. Charging authorities are being asked to return this information in April. Details of my assessments of the county and district components of community charges for spending in line with the 1990-91 revenue support grant settlement are given in the following tables :
District component of community charge<1> |For standard |Assuming present |spending |spending patterns |£ |£ ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Alyn and Deeside |26.97 |29 Colwyn |26.97 |31 Delyn |26.97 |45 Glyndwr |26.97 |26 Rhuddlan |26.97 |43 Wrexham Maelor |26.97 |29 Carmarthen |26.97 |10 Ceredigion |26.97 |21 Dinefwr |26.97 |8 Llanelli |29.23 |42 Preseli Pembrokeshire |26.97 |12 South Pembrokeshire |26.97 |10 Blaenau Gwent |26.97 |42 Islwyn |26.97 |28 Monmouth |26.97 |32 Newport |29.23 |34 Torfaen |26.97 |26 Aberconwy |26.97 |38 Arfon |26.97 |23 Dwyfor |26.97 |19 Meirionnydd |26.97 |44 Ynys Mon |26.97 |38 Cynon Valley |29.23 |23 Merthyr Tydfil |29.23 |27 Ogwr |26.97 |33 Rhondda |29.23 |12 Rhymney Valley |26.97 |38 Taff Ely |26.97 |8 Brecknock |26.97 |25 Montgomeryshire |26.97 |11 Radnorshire |26.97 |21 Cardiff |26.97 |29 Vale of Glamorgan |26.97 |19 Port Talbot |26.97 |23 Lliw Valley |26.97 |16 Neath |26.97 |26 Swansea |26.97 |31 Clwyd |145.55 |155 Dyfed |145.12 |142 Gwent |144.91 |141 Gwynedd |145.55 |130 Mid Glamorgan |144.81 |145 Powys |145.55 |108 South Glamorgan |145.55 |128 West Glamorgan |145.55 |184 <1> Includes community councils.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, by how much in cash and percentage terms each of the district councils in Wales are planning to increase their spending in 1990-91 ;
(2) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, the planned spending in 1990-91 of all district councils in Wales and the consequent percentage of his standard spending assessment ;
(3) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, by how much in cash and percentage terms each of the county councils in Wales are planning to increase their spending in 1990-91 ;
(4) if he will list in appropriate order, according to the latest available information, the planned spending in 1990-91 of all county councils in Wales and the consequent percentage of his standard spending assessment.