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Mr. Peter Walker : Llanelli borough council area comprises part of the Dyfed county council NUTS level III unit. For the purpose of article 9 of the EC regulation 2052/88, however, the Llanelli area is eligible for European Community assistance under objective 2 of that regulation because it is adjacent to West Glamorgan, a NUTS level III unit within the industrial south Wales objective 2 area, and because it satisfies all the Commission's criteria for objective 2 support.
Mr. Denzil Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether the area covered by the Llanelli borough council is eligible for assistance under objective 2 of article 9 of the EC regulation 2052/88.
Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many of the current appointments made either jointly or solely by him to the Welsh National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting are held by women.
Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what was the total expenditure of the Welsh National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting during the last year where figures are available ; and what proportion of expenditure was allocated to (a) administration, (b) hosting of meetings and conferences, (c) allowances for attending meetings and (d) general allowances given to committee nominees.
Column 176(a) £622,717 for administration ;
(b) £2,500 for hosting of meetings and conferences ; and (c) £33,901 subsistence allowances for attending meetings. There were no general allowances given to committee nominees.
Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is the attendance record at meetings (a) since their appointment and (b) during 1989 of the current members of the Agriculture Advisory Panel for Wales appointed solely or jointly by him or his predecessor.
Mr. Peter Walker : All appointments to the Agriculture Advisory Panel for Wales are made solely by me. The full panel meets two or three times a year and the information requested is set out in the following table.
|Attendance record|In 1989 |percentage since |appointment ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- Mr. R. E. M. Rees |95 |100 Mr. J. A. Parry |95 |100 Mr. D. F. R. George |92 |100 Mr. C. J. Beynon |84 |100 Professor M. Haines |100 |100 Mr. T. H. Jones |90 |100 Mr. D. L. Carey-Evans |100 |100 Mr. D. R. Williams |100 |100 Mr. R. C. Pratt |75 |100 Mr. E. H. Perkins |100 |100 Mrs. T. Adams |100 |100 Mrs. P. Keen |100 |100 Mrs. A. M. Rees |100 |100
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales when he next proposes to meet the EEC Regional Commissioner to discuss aid for areas affected by industrial decline ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Peter Walker : My officials regularly visit the regional policy directorate in Brussels and I am in close touch with developments. I will make contact with the Commissioner whenever I believe it to be necessary.
Ms. Ruddock : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will publish a table showing the latest figure for expenditure per pupil on (a) books and (b) equipment and comparable figures for each year since 1978-79 in(i) primary schools, (ii) secondary schools and (iii) special schools in cash and real terms using an index of 100 for 1978-79.
Column 177education since 1978-79 is shown in the following table. Reliable information on text books and equipment is not separately available.
Table 1 Expenditure (£/pupil) on books and equipment at outturn prices |Primary |Secondary |Special<1> ------------------------------------------------------- 1978-79 |11.9 |20.9 |35.1 1979-80 |12.7 |22.8 |42.2 1980-81 |14.6 |25.2 |40.9 1981-82 |16.2 |28.4 |59.5 1982-83 |18.5 |33.5 |54.7 1983-84 |19.8 |37.4 |57.9 1984-85 |17.9 |39.9 |67.1 1985-86 |20.0 |41.3 |93.7 1986-87 |22.5 |57.4 |80.7 1987-88 |23.9 |58.2 |102.6 <1> Figures relate to the education of pupils at maintained special schools and other special education provided otherwise than at school. Expenditure on special education in primary and secondary schools is included in the primary and secondary school unit costs.
Table 2 Index of expenditure (£/pupil) on books and equipment (1978-79 = 100) Primary Secondary Special
100 100 100
1991.4 93.4 103.1
1988.9 87.1 84.2
1989.7 89.5 111.7
1995.9 98.6 96.0
1997.9 105.2 97.1
1984.4 107.0 107.1
1989.3 104.9 141.8
1997.1 141.2 118.2
1998.4 136.3 143.1
Primary includes nursery schools.
Figures relate to the education of pupils at maintained special schools and other special education provided otherwise than at school. Expenditure on special education in primary and secondary schools is included in the primary and secondary school unit costs.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : The total value of development contracts at present is £311,620, broken down as follows : West Wales TEC £110,000 ; Mid Glamorgan TEC £103,500 and the North East Wales TEC £98,120. The levels of development funding for the other TECs whose bids have been approved, North West Wales, South Glamorgan and Gwent, are still being negotiated.
Dr. Kim Howells : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many hydrogeological surveys have been brought to the notice of the Welsh Office via the National Rivers Authority and the Welsh Water Authority in conjunction with planning applications to use quarries and other locations as landfill waste disposal sites.
Mr. Grist : The Welsh Office has no record of a hydrogeological survey brought to its attention via the National Rivers Authority and the Welsh Water Authority in conjunction with a planning application for a landfill waste disposal site.
Mr. Grist : Since 1 June 1988, 102 individual representations and petitions have been received by the Department seeking expanded use of the minor casualty unit services at Singleton hospital, Swansea, the majority of which have explicitly sought improved access to X-ray facilities.
The district health authority has indicated to the Department that it would neither support nor encourage the development of radiology services for the minor casualty unit.
Mr. Nicholas Brown : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) if he will publish a table showing the average income of first time house buyers and average prices of houses in Wales in 1989-90 ; (2) what is the average new mortgage in 1989-90 in Wales : (3) what is the average outstanding mortgage in 1989-90 in Wales.
Mr. Grist [holding answer 9 February 1990] : The available information for Wales relating to building society borrowers only for the first six months of the financial year 1989-80 is given in the following table :
First time purchases April-September 1989 all Purchases Average recorded |Average |Average new |Average income of |house price |mortgage |house price borrowers<1> £ |£ |£ |£ ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 13,291 |33,209 |30,026 |45,615 <1> Different building societies have different conventions for recording the income of borrowers.
Mr. Shersby : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will take steps to prohibit the importing of foreign taps which do not conform to British Standard 5412 with respect to the diameter of the taps' internal construction.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has no plans to prohibit the importing of foreign taps. Taps have to comply with the byelaw requirements of the United Kingdom water undertakers. Such things as the performance of taps and their value for money are largely matters for consumers to judge.
Column 179Mr. Trippier : I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave on Thursday 8 February to the hon. Member for Dewsbury (Mrs. Taylor) ( Official Report, Vol 166, col. 757 ).
Mr. Trippier : Any waste disposal site licensed by a waste disposal authority under the Control of Pollution Act 1974 (COPA) may receive low- level radioactive waste where this is authorised by HMIP under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960. Low-level radioactive waste authorised for disposal to local landfill sites with ordinary refuse is subject to certain conditions including activity limits. Disposals under these conditions present no hazard either to the refuse collector or at the disposal site and the destination of the waste is not recorded. It is therefore impracticable to establish a central register containing the information requested. Waste disposal authorities do, however, maintain registers of all disposal sites licensed under COPA in their areas.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State explained in his reply of 9 January to my hon. Friend the Member for Birmingham, Northfield (Mr. King) (Official Report, Vol 164, cols 589-91), we received over 80 responses to the discussion paper which we issued last August proposing the establishment of an EC-wide scheme of eco-labelling. Just over 30 of these responses were from individual companies, and they were overwhelmingly in support of our proposals. We shall, of course, want to work closely with interested groups in moving towards setting up a scheme.
Dr. Kim Howells : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give the specific measurements of the substances that are to be present in or absent from river water in order to meet (a) the minimum clean water qualification standards of the National Rivers Authority and (b) the qualification standards set by the European Economic Community.
Column 180river quality survey, a copy of which is in the Library. There is no EC legislation setting general quality standards for rivers, although there are directives relating to specific dangerous substances (76/464/EEC et seq, reproduced in Department of the Environment circular 7/89 (Welsh Office 16/89)), to the quality of designated fresh water needing protection or improvement in order to support fish life (78/659/EEC), and to the quality of surface water intended for the abstraction of drinking water (75/440/EEC).
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The general classification system for rivers currently in use throughout England and Wales is being reviewed and will not be formally prescribed until that review has been completed. In the meantime specific classifications have been established, by regulations made under section 104 of the Water Act 1989, for surface waters according to their suitability for abstraction by water undertakers for supply (after treatment) as drinking water (SI 1989 No. 1148) and for a range of specific dangerous substances (SI 1989 No. 2286).
Ms. Walley : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) how many radiochemical inspectors' posts (a) filled and (b) unfilled were provided for each year in respect of each organisation ; what is the maximum period considered necessary between site visits by these organisations ; and what statutory duties exist on these organisations to monitor, record and make public radioactivity emitted off-site from any site subject to inspection ;
(2) how many radiochemical inspectors were in post for each year from 1986- 87 to 1989-90, respectively for (a) the radiochemical inspectorate prior to April 1987, (b) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution, (c) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution (Scotland), (d) Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution (Northern Ireland), and (e) the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food ;
(3) how many sites were visited by radiochemical inspectors in each year from 1986-87 to 1989-90 ; and what is the average period between site visits ;
(4) what statutory duties exist on users of radioactive materials as defined in the Radioactive Substances Act to (a) monitor, (b) record and (c) make public in each case amounts of radioactive emitted off-site from any site to which radiochemical inspectors have powers of entry or inspection.
Mr. Trippier : Organisations subject to control under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 (RSA60) must comply with strict conditions and activity limits imposed by HMIP in certificates of registration and authorisation
Column 181issued under the Act. The issue of certificates follows careful assessment of the possible environmental impact where appropriate. Conditions imposed vary with the circumstances, but in the case of radioactive waste disposals, these commonly require monitoring to take place. In all cases proper and detailed records must be maintained. All premises controlled under the Act are subject to scrutiny by HMIP inspectors under powers contained in section 12 of RSA60, to ensure compliance with the terms of certificates issued. Although there is no requirement in the Act to make information public, details of monitoring of radioactive discharges from the nuclear industry are published annually both by the industry itself and by this Department.
The information available on the number and frequency of site inspections and on staff in the radiochemical inspectorate and HMIP, for the period 1986-87 to 1988-89 is contained in the Department's management information system returns (MINIS 8-10), available in the Library of the House. The MINIS 11 report covering 1989-90 will be placed in the Library in due course.
Matters relating to Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food are the responsibilities of their respective Secretaries of State.
Mr. Trippier : In England there are some 9,600 premises subject to regulation by HMIP under the Radioactive Substances Act 1960 (RSA60). The administration of RSA60 in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland is a matter for the respective Secretaries of State for those countries.
Mr. Malcolm Bruce : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will outline his responsibilities in respect of protecting water sources and in respect of controlling leakage from the distribution system.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The National Rivers Authority is primarily responsible for protecting water sources. The water undertakers are responsible for controlling leakage from the distribution system. But the Director General of Water Services will monitor their leakage control programmes to ensure that an appropriate balance is struck between capital and operational costs in the interests of local consumers.
Mr. Conway : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what he is doing to ensure that those waste disposal authorities identified in the answer to the hon. Member for Hornsey and Wood Green (Sir H. Rossi) Official Report, 11 January, columns 684-85, submit waste disposal plans as they are required to do under section 1 of the Control of Pollution Act.
Mr. Trippier : I have today written to leaders of the 15 authorities concerned asking them to submit their plans by 30 November. My officials will be discussing with the authorities concerned the steps needed for completing the plans by this date. Officials are also writing to other authorities asking them to provide confirmation of their latest plans.
At the same time, we are proposing an amendment to the Environmental Protection Bill to allow my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State to set deadlines for the preparation of waste disposal plans and to prescribe the factors to be taken into account in preparing such plans.
We attach considerable importance to having a comprehensive framework of such plans across the country. Under the Bill's provisions, we see these plans as providing a vital framework for informing investment decisions by public and private sector waste disposal interests as well as publicising required standards and enforcement policies by the new waste regulation authorities. We shall be reviewing the content and scope of these plans for the future and will be issuing, in due course, revised guidance to local authorities on how existing plans should be updated.
Mr. Hannam : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he will propose revisions to the housing revenue account subsidy determination of 21 December in response to requests by local authorities.
Mr. Michael Spicer : My Department is today sending to local housing authorities proposed amendments to the housing revenue account subsidy rules for 1990-91. These are designed to deal with questions put to us since the main rules were published on 21 December. They should reassure councils that rents next year can be kept within Government guidelines.
The new policy is designed to begin moving authorities towards a sensible patten of rents in which the rents of council housing broadly reflect the geographical variations in the value of property. The old system was a nonsense because we had to assume that rents would move by the same amount in every part of the country. None the less, we are not suggesting that council rents should reach market levels (except where these are low) and we will make sure that rents can stay within the reach of ordinary working people.
I know that many authorities have been doubtful about whether they can keep rent increases within our guidelines. I believe we have now removed the main outstanding problems, and that some of their worries have been unnecessary. I would urge councils to look closely at several aspects of the system that convey very considerable flexibility or help. Let me give a few examples.
Some authorities have been worried that they could no longer fund repairs and improvements from capital
Column 183receipts from the sale of council property. But genuine capitalised repairs are not precluded by section 40 of the 1989 Act.
Today's draft rules confirm our intention that subsidy will be paid on works that have been financed through deferred purchase or leasing schemes.
Councils can carry forward balances up to £150 a dwelling or £5 million. Authorities can also look for economies and efficiency savings.
We have also, today, confirmed a rule change that was prompted by the action of Wakefield council, on 9 January. Wakefield reduced its rent for the last seven weeks of this year from £17.82 to £1.70 a week, solely to gain an extra £5 million in 1990-91 from a recalculation of subsidy. We believe this was wrong and, after formal consultations with the council, have revised the rules so that the January change in rents will not alter its subsidy entitlement next year.
As a result of today's revised rules, I believe authorities should be able to hold rent increases broadly in line with guidelines. Some may be above, some below. The final decision rests with councils themselves, which must decide on the levels of income and expenditure they want to budget for.
Mr. Meacher : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many council houses for rent have been built each year since 1970 ; and how many are planned to be built in each of the next five years.
Year |Number ------------------------ 1970 |127,700 1971 |110,900 1972 |89,400 1973 |75,700 1974 |95,600 1975 |113,800 1976 |116,200 1977 |114,000 1978 |92,100 1979 |73,300 1980 |73,500 1981 |54,200 1982 |30,800 1983 |28,700 1984 |28,400 1985 |22,700 1986 |18,900 1987 |15,700 1988 |15,300 <1>1989 |12,600 <1> Provisional.
The Government do not expect local authorities to add significantly to their stock of houses for rent. Our policy is that housing associations should become the major providers of new subsidised rented housing and public expenditure plans reflect this.
Column 184from toxic waste deposited at Stanton road, Sandiacre, Pewit tip, Manners avenue, Ilkeston, and Long Eaton refuse tip, all in Derbyshire ; what monitoring by pollution control authorities has been undertaken ; and what information or advice has been given to Erewash local authority.
(a) Stanton road, Sandiacre--no recorded information ;
(b) Pewit tip, Manners avenue, Ilkeston--some (risk) to minor (aquifer) ;
(c) Long Eaton refuse tip, Meadows lane--serious (risk) to minor (aquifer).
This information was passed to the local authority and water authority to assist them in their regulatory function.
My Department has no evidence that the sites are presenting a risk to water supplies or public health.
Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will ask for the radioactive and chemical pollution of the Irish sea to be placed on the agenda of the forthcoming North sea Environment Ministers conference ; what other issues will be discussed ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Trippier [holding answer 12 February 1990] : Given the geographical scope of the North sea conference, it would not be appropriate for matters concerning pollution in the Irish sea to be included at the third North sea conference in March.
The main purpose of the third North sea conference is to look at progress on the implementation of important measures agreed at the second conference in London in 1987. The conference will also review all the major activities which have an impact on the marine environment, including discharges of dangerous substances via rivers and the atmosphere, nutrients, dumping, shipping and offshore installations.
The measures agreed at the North sea conferences are applied to all our seas, including the Irish sea.