Mr. Barron : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy when he expects the annual report and accounts of British Nuclear Fuels plc for the financial year 1989-90 to be published ; and what are the reasons for the delay in their publication.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : I understand that the accounts of British Nuclear Fuels plc for the financial year ended 31 March 1990 will be filed with the Registrar of Companies during April 1991 and published as soon as possible afterwards. The accounts have been delayed as a result of negotiations on new contractual arrangements between the company and its two major United Kingdom customers, Nuclear Electric plc and Scottish Nuclear Ltd.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : Overpaid moneys are recovered by means of an immediate lump sum payment, or through a weekly deduction from continuing benefit under the redundant mineworkers' payments scheme, or through commitment to repay from a future entitlement such as a mineworker's pension, or through some combination of these three ways.
Mr. Hinchliffe : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy how many actions were taken resulting in the recovery of overpaid sums to recipients from the redundant mineworkers' payments scheme ; and what was the total sum of recovered moneys for the last year in which figures are available.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : The data are not collated in the form requested. However, in the tax year 1989-90 around 2,600 actions were undertaken to recover over a number of years some £700,000 in overpaid moneys.
* Calendar year |Thousand |tonnes ------------------------------------------ 1986 |48 1987 |89 1988 |375 1989 |181 1990 |<1>592 <1>Provisional. Source: Her Majesty's Customs and Excise.
Names |Occupations --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- John Pitts |Former Chairman and Chief Executive of (Chairman) |the Tioxide Group. Term of office, five |years expiring May 1993 Martin Acland |JP, General Commissioner of Income Tax |and former Executive Director of |Mercantile Credit Co. Term of office four |years expiring May 1992. Diana Beale |Advice Worker and Member of the |National Association of Citizen Advice |Bureaux. Term of office four years |expiring May 1992 Allan Blake |Associate Dean for Personnel and |Resources Business School, Leeds |Polytechnic. Term of office five years |expiring May 1993. Hilary Bradley |Barrister. Term of office three years |expiring May 1991. Lyn Devonald |Solicitor. Term of office four years |expiring May 1992. Kenneth Farrow |Barrister and Assistant Recorder. Term of |office four years expiring May 1992. Suzette Harold |Former Managing Director of F |International Ltd. Term of office three |years expiring May 1991. Geoffrey Hibbert |JP, former Personnel Director, Shell |International Petroleum Co. Term of |office three years expiring May 1991. David Sinker |JP, Chartered Accountant and Chairman |of the Leach Group. Term of office four |years expiring May 1991. John Smith |JP, former Personnel Director and |Assistant Managing Director, Associated |British Ports. Term of office five years |expiring May 1993. Peter Soar |Solicitor. Term of office five years expiring |May 1993. |The Chairman of the Board is paid |£21,326 per annum. Mr. Hibbert is paid |£12,925 and Mr. Blake £7,109. All other |members are paid £14,218 per annum.
Mr. Menzies Campbell : To ask the Attorney-General if he will publish a list of the equipment stolen from his office in the last three years for which information is available ; and what was the approximate value of each item.
The Attorney-General : No equipment has been stolen from my office or from the Treasury Solicitor's Department during the last three years. Four screwdrivers with a total value of £1.20 have been stolen from the Serious Fraud Office, and the items listed in the table have been stolen from offices of the Crown prosecution service.
|Approximate|Total |value of |each item -------------------------------------------------------------------- |£ |£ 6 Video recorders |500 |3,000 1 Video camera |1,000 |1,000 1 Word processor |1,700 |1,700 21 Hand held dictation machines |90 |1,890 1 Transcriber |250 |250 5 Microwave ovens |150 |750 4 Electric fans |25 |100 1 Lawn mower |400 |400 1 Sactruck |65 |65 2 Volumes Oxford English dictionary |50 |100 1 Answerphone |90 |90 1 Stainless steel sink unit and waste disposal unit |200 |200 Central heating radiators |- |1000 1 Coffee maker |60 |60 |--- |Total |10,605
Mr. Morgan : To ask the Attorney-General (1) what consultations he has had with the chief constable of the South Wales police regarding the provision of security for the persons, families and property of circuit judges when resident at Radyr Chain house, Llandrisant road, Cardiff ;
(2) what representations he has had regarding the level of security at Radyr Chain house.
The Attorney-General : No residential accommodation is provided for circuit judges. Security arrangements at the residential accommodation provided for High Court judges in Cardiff and elsewhere are regularly reviewed by officials of the Lord Chancellor's Department, and changes made when these are necessary.
representations from persons requiring the services of a solicitor who have been unable to obtain those services. The Scottish Legal Aid Board has also received no such representations. Similarly, the position in Northern Ireland is that no such representations have been received.
The Attorney-General : No statistics are available on the identities of solicitors or firms of solicitors undertaking legal aid work at any one time. The Legal Aid Board does, however, publish a figure showing the number of officies receiving payment. For the last three years these were as follows :
|Number ---------------------- 1987-88 |11,617 1988-89 |11,558 1989-90 |11,455
The Legal Aid Board also publishes statistics which show that, despite this, over the past three years the number of legal aid payments made to solicitors has risen.
Mr. O'Brien : To ask the Attorney-General what representations he has received concerning people wishing to obtain legal aid because they cannot afford the legal fees but who have been refused legal aid ; and if he will make a statement.
The Attorney-General : The Lord Chancellor regularly receives representations regarding all aspects of the legal aid system. However, the grant of legal aid is a matter for the Legal Aid Board or the courts. The Lord Chancellor is conducting a review into the financial conditions for legal aid which will also consider how an applicant's means relate to the cost of proceedings.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment with regard to the introduction of the litter code under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, and his Department's effort to seek the views of local authority representatives, how many local authorities submitted comments on his proposals ; what proportion of comments were in favour of his proposals ; and if he will make those comments publicly available.
Column 295the new duty to ensure that land is kept clear of litter and refuse, was issued for consultation to local authorities and others in February 1990.
Of the 160 local authorities who commented on the draft code, only a handful stated that they were opposed to it. This was, no doubt, due to the fact that the code was drafted in consultation with a code of practice advisory group which comprised representatives of the main local authority associations, statutory transport undertakers, private sector cleansing contractors and property owners. The practicalities of the proposals had therefore already been carefully considered by practitioners, but comments were taken into account in producing the final version of the code which was published on 18 January 1991.
We have no plans, at present, to make any responses to the consultation publicly available.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what plans he has for the withdrawal of urban development corporations and the transfer of powers back to local authorities ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Portillo : Urban development corporations were set up as temporary regeneration agencies with limited lifetimes. No UDC completes its projected lifetime before 1993. We are keeping their lifetimes under review.
Mr. Blunkett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish a table showing for each financial year from 1979-80 to 1990-91 the proportion expressed as a percentage of actual local authority spending met be (a) central government grant, (b) non-domestic ratepayers and (c) domestic rate/poll tax.
|Domestic rates/ |Government grants |Non-domestic rates |community charges |<1>as percentage of local authority|<2>as percentage of percentage of |local authority |local authority |local authority |expenditure |expenditure |expenditure ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1979-80<4> |60 |22 |17 1980-81<4> |59 |23 |17 1981-82 |56 |25 |20 1982-83 |53 |26 |21 1983-84 |54 |26 |19 1984-85 |54 |26 |20 1985-86 |54 |28 |21 1986-87 |50 |28 |22 1987-88 |49 |28 |23 1988-89 |46 |28 |24 1989-90 |44 |28 |25 1990-91 |42 |29 |28 <1> For the years 1979-80 to 1989-90 Government grants comprises aggregate Exchequer grant and rate rebate grants. For 1990-91 Government grants is made up of revenue support grant, special grants, specific grants in aggregate external finance community charge benefits, and transitional relief grant. <2> Net of rate rebates. <3> Net of rate rebates for the years 1979-80 to 1989-90. Net of community charge benefits and transitional relief in 1990-91. <4> England and Wales.
Mr. Nellist : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the metropolitan councils, and London boroughs, in England in ranking order of their indebtedness, in the last year for which figures are available, with the figures for (a) their debt, (b) the level of that year's debt service charge, (c) their population, (d), (a) divided by (c) and (e) , (b) divided by (c) ; and if he will give corresponding figures for five, 10 and 15 years ago.
Mr. Spearing : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what recent directions he has given to the London Docklands development corporation on policy changes envisaged for that body ; and what announcement he will be making concerning the role and appointment of its chief executive,.
Mr. Key : The Secretary of State has issued no statutory directions to the London Docklands development corporation. The LDDC keeps its policies and programmes under constant review, as reflected in its corporate plan, and holds regular discussions with Ministers during that process. The Secretary of State welcomes the LDDC board's decision to appoint Mr. Eric Sorensen as their new chief executive. Mr. Sorensen's role will be determined by the board.
Mr. Key : The public inquiry into the relevant planning applications was reopened on 15 January and remains to be concluded. It is for the London residuary body to decide on the timing of the disposal of county hall in the light of the planning position.
Mr. Hinchliffe : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will introduce legislation to require that manufacturers prove substances are not environmentally hazardous prior to production and disposal.
Mr. Baldry : There are adequate powers in existing legislation to require manufactuers to obtain information about potentially hazardous substances and to assess their effects on the environment. The Notification of New Substances Regulations 1982 require manufacturers or importers to provide information about potential hazards to the environment before they place substances on the market for the first time. Section 142 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 gives the Secretary of State powers to require manufacturers to obtain information about the properties of hazardous substances in order to assess their potential for causing pollution of the environment or harm to human health. In addition there are general duties under the relevant legislation not to discharge polluting substances to air or water or to dispose of them to land without the appropriate authorisation.
Mr. Baldry : It is not practicable to enforce local disposal. All wastes must be disposed of at suitably licensed facilities and particularly difficult wastes sometimes have to travel some distance to the nearest specialist facility equipped to dispose of them safely.
The Department is, however, currently encouraging authorities to aim for regional self sufficiency in waste disposal. To this end we have asked authorities to form voluntary regional groupings to provide better strategic planning for disposal, a uniform approach to licensing and enforcement and more effective deployment of specialist resources across authorities.
We expect these arrangments to be in place by 1 April. The Secretary of State has reserve powers in section 31 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 to set up statutory regional waste regulation authorities where suitable voluntary arrangements have not been made.
Mr. Hinchliffe : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) how many licensed waste disposal facilities are situated (a) within the United Kingdom, (b) in Yorkshire and Humberside and (c) within West Yorkshire ;
(2) how many waste disposal inspections were carried out in 1989 and 1990 ; and how frequently, on average, individual waste disposal premises are inspected ;
Column 298(3) how many inspectors are employed to monitor the activities of licensed waste disposal installations within the United Kingdom ; and if he will quantify these in terms of numbers of inspectors per installation licensed ;
(4) if he will increase the number of pollution inspectors to reflect the increased power of inspectors to monitor the activities of licensed waste disposal facilities ;
(5) if he will introduce legislation to replace Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution guidelines, as conditions for the licensing of waste disposal facilities within the United Kingdom, with statutory regulations ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Baldry : It is the responsibility of waste disposal authorities to issue waste disposal licences and to ensure that any conditions of the licences are met. The information on numbers of sites, inspectors, and frequency of visits is not, therefore, available. However, as part of the implementation of part II of the Environmental Protection Act, the Secretary of State will be issuing statutory guidance to waste regulation authorities over the discharge of their functions in relation to licences. This guidance will largely be a revision of the existing waste management paper No. 4 "The Licensing of Waste Facilities".
Mr. Churchill : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when his Department first received an application to build a regional shopping centre at Dumplington, Trafford park, Manchester ; and when he anticipates being in a position to announce his decision.
Mr. Yeo : A planning appeal for this scheme was made in November 1986. Two subsequent applications were called-in during 1987. I cannot yet forecast when it will be possible to decide them. I will write to interested parties as soon as I can.
Mr. O'Brien : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what additional resources and help he is offering to local authorities to help them fulfil the duties and responsibilities in the proposed regulations on the monitoring of private water supplies ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Baldry : Most of the expenditure incurred by local authorities as a consequence of the proposed regulations on private water supplies will relate to the sampling and analysis of the supplies. The proposals provide for local authorities to recover through charges the costs they will incur for sampling and analysis at the prescribed frequencies. The additional costs to local authorities of carrying out their enforcement activities under section 57 of the Water Act 1989 were taken into account in the increase in total standard spending which we have allowed for in next year's revenue support grant settlement.
Once the Private Water Supplies Regulations have been made, a departmental circular will be issued to provide advice and assistance to local authorities in carrying out their functions in relation to private water supplies. A draft of this circular forms part of the consultation paper recently published. Guidance to local authorities will also be available from the drinking water inspectorate in the form of a technical booklet.
(2) how many families with dependent children, accepted as homeless by their local authority, were placed in bed-and-breakfast accommodation in 1990 or at the nearest available date ; and if he will express the answer in terms of the total number for England and the number for each local authority ;
(3) what was the average length of stay for families with dependent children, who were accepted as homeless by the local authority, and placed in bed-and-breakfast accommodation, in 1990 or at the nearest available date ; and if he will express the answer in terms of the average length of stay for England and for each local authority.
Sir George Young : Local authorities have a statutory duty to secure accommodation for households who have been found homeless, or threatened with homelessness, and in priority need, under part III of the Housing Act 1985. Information is reported quarterly to the Department.
In 1989-90 local authorities accepted and found accommodation for some 80,000 households with dependent children. The information provided does not indentify families with dependent children placed in bed and breakfast accommodation nor the average length of stay and my Department has no estimates. The latest estimates for England for the total number of homeless households in bed and breakfast accommodation, for the end of September 1990, appear in table 4(a) of "Households found accommodation under the homelessness provisions of the 1985 Housing Act : England. Results for the third quarter 1990. Supplementary Tables", a copy of which is in the Library. Available information for individual local authorities appears in table 7 of the same document.
Mr. Baldry : The second interim report on the national water metering trials was published by the water industry last July and covered the installation phase of the trials. A final report covering other aspects of the trials will be published after they have been completed. This will not be until 1993.
Mr. Heseltine [holding answer 8 February 1991] : I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the Under-Secretary of State, my hon. Friend the Member for Salisbury (Mr. Key) to a question by the hon. Member for Banff and Buchan (Mr. Salmond) on 16 January 1991, at columns 498-99.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will make a statement as to the result of the discussions between his noble Friend Lord Ferrers and the chief constable of the West Midlands, other members of a police delegation and the Association of Metropolitan authorities, held on 18 December, to discuss their financial concerns about the effects of plans to cap the community charge in their areas.
Mr. Menzies Campbell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will publish a list of the equipment stolen from his Department in the last three years for which information is available ; and what was the approximate value of each item.
1988-89 |£ ------------------------------------ Gardening equipment |890 Farm equipment |8,380 Video recorder |193 Radio |257 Projection screen |100 Video recorder and Microwave oven |470
1989-90 |£ ------------------------------------ Gardening equipment |1,780 Farm equipment |10,996 Bicycles |353
1990-91 |£ ------------------------------------ Gardening equipment |1,006
The following equipment is thought to have been but has not yet been formally entered on the losses register for the purposes of the appropriation account :
1989-90 |£ --------------------------------- Desktop computer |1,450 Video recorder |290
England 523 ; Wales 38 ; Scotland 72 and Northern Ireland 17. The number of constituencies in England will be increased to 524 at the next general election.
Mr. Allen : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the total expenditure by central and local government in the last financial year ; what is the estimated figure for the current year ; and by how much income tax requires to be raised to yield the equivalent sums.
Mr. Mellor : The latest information on expenditure by central and local government was published in the "Statistical Supplement to the 1990 Autumn Statement"--Cm 1520. The figures requested, consistent with the supplement, are as follows :--
£ million |1989-90 |1990-91 --------------------------------------------------------------- Central government<1> Expenditure other than debt interest |127,521 |141,214 Debt interest |17,823 |<2>17,800 |---- |---- Total |145,344 |<2>159,000 Local authorities<3> Expenditure other than debt interest |47,970 |52,086 Debt interest |4,919 |<2>5,200 |---- |---- Total |52,889 |<2>57,300 <1>Including the financing requirements of public corporations (other than nationalised industries). <2>Rounded to the nearest 100 million. <3>Includes expenditure financed by support provided by central government (eg revenue support grant) and expenditure which local authorities finance for themselves (eg from community charge, capital receipts).
A ready reckoner for the revenue effects of tax changes was published table 4.5 of the autumn statement.
Mr. Campbell-Savours : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many Departments to date have established or expanded purchasing units purchasing goods formerly bought on their behalf by the Crown Suppliers ; and what are the total annual running costs of those units ;
(2) how many Departments to date have established units purchasing services formerly provided to them by the Property Services Agency ; and what are the total annual running costs of those units.
Mr. Menzies Campbell : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish a list of the equipment stolen from his Department in the last three years for which information is available ; and what was the approximate value of each item.
seven transponders, 1987--value £1,400.
computer accessories and document box, 1987--value
Video recorder, 1988--value £285.89.
electroholm screen, 1988--value £292.35.
ICL keyboard, 1990--value £126.