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Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 30th April 1991

TRANSPORT

Aviation Fires

Mr. David Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what reliable biological testing has been undertaken of the sprinkler systems proposed for use in passenger transport aircraft at time of aviation fires.

Mr. McLoughlin : The statutory responsibility for the safety regulation of United Kingdom civil aviation rests with the Civil Aviation Authority. As the answer requires detailed technical information, I have drawn the hon. Member's question to the attention of the Civil Aviation Authority, asking it to write to the hon. Member.

Central Transport Consultative Committee

Mr. Snape : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he has received any representations from the Central Transport Consultative Committee on the ministerial direction issued in 1988 to British Rail concerning the maintenance of railway passenger services under the Railways Act 1974 ; and if he proposes to revise it.

Mr. Freeman : Yes ; no.

Drink Driving

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what evidence he has on the effectiveness of random mass alcohol testing of drivers in securing continuing reductions in drink driving after any one- off drop.

Mr. Chope : The best evidence we have on the effect of random breath testing come from New South Wales. The table below shows its effectiveness in reducing the proportion of drivers and riders killed who were over the limit since its introduction in 1982. Following the effect of an "on-off" drop that might be attributed to the introduction of such a measure, levels have remained largely unchanged.


Proportion of drivers and riders killed, whose alcohol  

level was                                               

known, over the legal limit                             

              |New South    |Great Britain              

              |Wales                                    

              |per cent.    |per cent.                  

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

1982          |40           |33                         

1983          |36           |28                         

1984          |33           |26                         

1985          |33           |26                         

1986          |34           |24                         

1987          |32           |23                         

1988          |31           |21                         

1989          |33           |<1>19                      

<1> Provisional.                                        


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A comparison with the proportional fall in Britain shows that our approach, of seeking to change public attitudes through a carefully targeted campaign, has been more successful.

The legal limit in New South Wales is 50 milligrammes of alcohol per millilitre of blood, compared with 80 in Great Britain.

Crash Casualties

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many people die on average in (a) motorway fog crashes each year and (b) in urban crashes each day.

Mr. Chope : During the five-year period 1985 to 1989, the most recent for which figures are available, there were on average five deaths in Great Britain each year resulting from motorway accidents in fog. Over the same period there were on average seven deaths each day on built-up roads.

Railway Services

Mr. Snape : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations he has received about the statutory compliance of railway services with his direction of March 1988 under the Railways Act 1974.

Mr. Freeman : The central transport consultative committee has made a representation about reductions in specific services since March 1988, while at the same time observing that the majority of services provide the same or a better level of frequency. I receive other representations from time to time.

Railway Investment

Mr. Peter Bottomley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if investment in new railway carriages for the services on the Eltham and New Eltham lines has been authorised.

Mr. McLoughlin : Four hundred class 465 Networker vehicles were approved in August 1989. The first of these is due to be delivered to British Rail in September this year. The new trains will begin to come into service on Kent Link routes, which include Eltham and New Eltham, from May 1992. The Department is currently considering an investment submission for further orders totalling 274 vehicles. We will respond as soon as possible.

Cars (Anti-Theft Measures)

Mr. Sheerman : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he intends introducing higher specifications and standards for the design of motor vehicles to make them less susceptible to theft.

Mr. Chope : There is already a British standard on vehicle security BS AU 209, which, if complied with by vehicle manufacturers, should make their motor vehicles less susceptible to theft.

My Department has therefore presented proposals to the European Commission for the amendment of the EC directive on vehicle security, based on the requirements contained in the British standard. These proposals have so far been resisted by some other member states ; but with the co-operation of the Society of


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Motor Manufacturers and Traders we intend to submit revised proposals and press for their introduction at the earliest possible opportunity.


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Privatisation

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what was the total sum paid out in fees to outside organisations in the furtherance of privatisation by his Department in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. McLoughlin : The total sums paid out by my Department in fees to outside organisations in the furtherance of privatisation are as follows :


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£000s                                                                                                                                                                                             

Privatisation             |1981-82      |1982-83      |1983-84      |1984-85      |1985-86      |1986-87      |1987-88      |1988-89      |1989-90      |1990-91      |<1>1991-92                 

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

Sale of shares in                                                                                                                                                                                 

  National Freight                                                                                                                                                                                

  Corporation             |151          |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Sale of shares in                                                                                                                                                                                 

  Associated British                                                                                                                                                                              

  Ports                   |-            |1,809        |260          |1,494        |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Sale of shares in British                                                                                                                                                                         

  Airways plc             |-            |-            |50           |1,012        |674          |20,804       |11,364       |72           |675          |47           |1                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Sale of shares in BAA                                                                                                                                                                             

  plc                     |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |564          |41,149       |3,095        |17           |1,392        |1                          

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Sale of National Bus                                                                                                                                                                              

  Company                                                                                                                                                                                         

  Operations              |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |635          |324          |139          |49           |27           |1,098                      

                                                                                                                                                                                                  

British Rail                                                                                                                                                                                      

  Privatisation Study                                                                                                                                                                             

  (Consultants' fees)     |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |-            |94           |503          |139          |805                        

<1> Estimate.                                                                                                                                                                                     

No expenditure was incurred before 1981-82.

Press and Public Relations

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what was the total expenditure by his Department on press and public relations in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. McLoughlin : The total expenditure on the Department's press and public relations office since 1984-85 is as follows :


             

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

1984-85      

1985-86      

1986-87      

1987-88      

1988-89      

1989-90      

1990-91<1>   

1991-92<2>   

<1>          

Estimate.    

<2> Budget.  

These figures cover the overall costs of running the press office, calculated using the ready reckoner for staff-related costs. Before 1984-85 the information division was a common service of the Departments of Transport, Environment and Property Services Agency.


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Road Inquiries

Mr. Ashley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many public inquiries into major new road proposals have been initiated by his Department since 1979 ; in how many cases the inspector's report was published (1) prior to and (2) simultaneously with the announcement of his directions ; and what considerations governed the timing of the publication of the Inspector's report and the announcement of his direction.

Mr. Chope : Figures for the number of public inquiries initiated since 1979 could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Reports are invariably published in the event of a decision being taken, and at the same time as the decision is announced. Prior publication would undermine the value of the inquiry and the report. It would not be appropriate to initiate another round of consultations, or to accept further representations, on the inspector's report after the inquiry has given all interested parties an equal opportunity to express their views. Sometimes a provisional decision is announced ; the report is published with that provisional decision, and following it an inquiry may be reopened.

Mr. Ashley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport in how many cases, following a public inquiry into a major road proposal, he has decided to adopt proposals that differed significantly from the recommendations made in the inspector's report ; and what restrictions there are on his freedom to disregard the

recommendations of an inspector.


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Mr. Chope : The Secretary of State for Transport makes decisions relating to his own highway proposals acting jointly with the Secretary of State for the Environment. While precise figures are not collected, it is very rare for the Secretaries of State to make decisions which differ substantially from an inspector's recommendation. If the Secretaries of State differ from an inspector on a finding of fact or take into account evidence which was not before the inquiry and by reason of this are disposed to disagree with the inspector's recommendation, they will almost invariably reopen the inquiry, and in certain circumstances they will be required to do so by rule 15 of the Highways (Inquiries Procedures) Rules 1976.


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Medals

Mr. Madden : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will arrange to amend the rules concerning the issuing of medals and replacement medals to include grandchildren of the person entitled to such medals ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. McLoughlin [holding answer Friday 26 April 1991] : The issue of campaign medals by my Department for services in the Merchant Navy is made in accordance with the rules agreed between the Central Chancery, Orders of Knighthood, and the Ministry of Defence on 21 May 1973. Under these, replacement medals are issued only to the first generation of legal beneficiaries which would exclude grandchildren. There appears to be no reason to depart from these rules in the case of medals for merchant seamen, about which I have corresponded with the hon. Member.


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Light Dues

Mr. Morley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many fishing boats in the United Kingdom failed to pay light dues in 1990.

Mr. McLoughlin [holding answer Friday 26 April 1991] : These figures are not available for the calendar year 1990. Payments of light dues for which they are liable have not yet been made in respect of about 450 fishing vessels for the year beginning 1 April 1990.

Departmental Staff

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will give for each year from 1979-80, including 1991-92, the number of staff actually employed


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on 1 April and the full complement of staff, including vacant posts, by grade, in the statistical divisions in his Department ; and if he will differentiate between staff in statistical posts and staff in administrative posts.

Mr. McLoughlin [holding answer Monday 29 April 1991] : The tables give the information requested for the complements and permanent staff employed in the directorate of statistics of the Department of Transport. The complement table shows details as at 1 April 1979 and annually from 1 April 1982 ; the staff in post figures are at 1 April 1979, and, thereafter annually from 1 April 1984. Data for the intervening years on each table are not available. The principal scientific officer between 1984 and 1990 and the economic adviser in 1990 were filling statistical posts.


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Directorate of Statistics Staff Complement of Department of Transport                                                              

                                   |1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April|1 April        

                                   |1979   |1982   |1983   |1984   |1985   |1986   |1987   |1988   |1989   |1990   |1991           

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

Statistician Group                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                   

Director of Statistics (Grade 3)   |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1              

Chief Statistician (Grade5)        |3      |3      |3      |4      |4      |4      |4      |4      |4      |4      |4              

Statistician (Grade 6)             |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |1      |1              

Statistician (Grade 7)             |13     |13     |15     |16     |18     |21     |21     |20     |23     |23     |20             

(Senior) Assistant Statistician    |4      |4      |4      |6      |6      |7      |8      |8      |6      |8      |8              

                                   |-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------        

Sub-total                          |21     |21     |23     |27     |29     |33     |34     |33     |34     |37     |34             

                                                                                                                                   

Other Staff                                                                                                                        

                                                                                                                                   

Economic Adviser                   |0      |0      |0      |1      |1      |1      |1      |1      |0      |0      |0              

Senior Information Officer         |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |1      |1      |1      |0      |0      |0              

Senior Executive Officer           |2      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |1      |1      |0      |0              

Higher Executive Officer           |8      |7      |7      |6      |8      |8      |10     |10     |9      |10     |12             

Executive Officer                  |19     |18     |17     |18     |22     |25     |25     |29     |30     |32     |31             

Administrative Officer (CO)        |44     |33     |33     |36     |34     |31     |28     |26     |27     |25     |27             

Administrative Assistant (CA)      |16     |9      |8      |6      |7      |6      |6      |5      |5      |4      |4              

(Senior) Personal Secretary        |4      |4      |4      |5      |5      |5      |5      |5      |5      |5      |5              

Principal Scientific Officer       |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0              

Higher Professional and Technical                                                                                                  

  Officer                          |0      |0      |1      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2              

Professional and Technical Officer |0      |0      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |2      |3              

Graphics Officer (Typographer)     |0      |1      |1      |0      |1      |1      |0      |0      |1      |1      |1              

Senior Data Processor              |3      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0              

Data Processor                     |15     |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0              

Messenger                          |1      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0      |0              

                                   |-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------|-------        

Sub-total                          |112    |72     |73     |76     |82     |82     |80     |82     |82     |81     |85             

                                                                                                                                   

Grand Total                        |133    |93     |96     |103    |111    |115    |114    |115    |116    |118    |119            



Staff in Post in Directorate of Statistics of Department of Transport                       

                                           All years as at 1 April                          

                                          |1979|1984|1985|1986|1987|1988|1989|1990|1991     

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

Statistician Group                                                                          

Director of Statistics (Grade 3)          |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1        

Chief Statistician (Grade 5)              |3   |4   |4   |4   |4   |4   |4   |4   |4        

Statistician (Grade 6)                    |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |1   |2        

Statistician (Grade 7)                    |13  |17  |18  |21  |19  |20  |23  |19  |18       

(Senior) Assistant Statistician           |4   |4   |5   |5   |7   |7   |4   |5   |7        

                                          |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-   |-        

  Sub-total                               |21  |26  |28  |31  |31  |32  |32  |30  |32       

                                                                                            

Other Staff                                                                                 

Economic Adviser                          |0   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |0   |1   |0        

Senior Information Officer                |0   |0   |0   |1   |1   |0   |0   |0   |0        

Senior Executive Officer                  |2   |0   |0   |0   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1        

Higher Executive Officer                  |7   |7   |8   |9   |9   |8   |9   |11  |12       

Executive Officer                         |20  |18  |22  |26  |24  |27  |29  |30  |30       

Administrative Officer (CO)               |42  |34  |34  |32  |30  |26  |24  |26  |28       

Administrative Assistant (CA)             |13  |6   |7   |6   |5   |5   |4   |4   |3        

(Senior) Personal Secretary               |3   |5   |5   |5   |4   |4   |4   |3   |5        

Principal Scientific Officer              |0   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |0        

Higher Professional and Technical Officer |0   |0   |2   |2   |2   |1   |2   |2   |3        

Professional and Technical Officer        |0   |2   |2   |2   |2   |2   |2   |1   |2        

Graphics Officer (Typographer)            |0   |0   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1   |1        

Senior Data Processor                     |3   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0        

Data Processor                            |13  |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0        

Messenger                                 |1   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0   |0        

                                          |--  |--  |--  |--  |--  |--  |--  |--  |--       

  Sub-total                               |104 |74  |83  |86  |81  |77  |77  |81  |85       

                                                                                            

    Grand Total                           |125 |100 |111 |117 |112 |109 |109 |111 |117      

Shipping Accident

Mr. David Porter : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement on the circumstances which resulted in the loss of the trawler Wilhelmina J when in collision with the Cypriot cargo vessel Zulfikar on 10 April ; and what actions his Department took subsequently.

Mr. McLoughlin [holding answer 29 April 1991] : The trawler Wilhelmina J collided with the Cypriot registered cargo ship Zulfikar during the early hours of 10 April in the English Channel. The Zulfikar, although aware of the collision, failed to stop. The Wilhelmina J sank with the tragic loss of all six persons on board. Investigations were begun by both the Cypriot authorities and the marine accident investigation branch (MAIB).

Both MAIB and the Cypriot authorities made immediate and sustained efforts to have the Zulfikar diverted to enable inspectors to interview the master and crew. After initial rejection, the ship's managers agreed on 12 April to divert to a position off Lisbon, where on 14 April an official from the Cypriot High Commission accompanied by inspectors from MAIB boarded the vessel by helicopter to pursue their investigations.

An interim inspector's report has been submitted to the Secretary of State, and a bulletin giving the facts so far established will shortly be issued : a copy will be placed in the Library. The inspectors have had the full co- operation of the flag state (Cyprus) and as the Zulfikar was manned by Indian nationals, an appropriate report has been sent to the Indian High Commission in London.

The investigation, which has the status of an inspector's inquiry under the Merchant Shipping (Accident Investigation) Regulations, is continuing. I cannot discuss the circumstances of the accident further at this stage. A


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full report will be produced when the inquiry is completed, and the inspector's findings will be published unless a formal investigation is ordered.

EMPLOYMENT

Single Mothers

Mr. Janner : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many single mothers are currently in (a) full-time and (b) part-time employment, respectively.

Mr. Jackson : Preliminary estimates from the GB labour force survey for spring 1990 indicate that there were 170,000 single mothers in full- time work and 213,000 in part-time work.

Child Care

Mr. Janner : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what percentage of firms provide child care facilities, on or off-site, for their employees ; and what percentage of (a) all employees and (b) single mothers in employment work for firms which provide child care facilities.

Mr. Forth : This information is not collected, but indications are that the provision of such facilities is growing.

Advertising

11. Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will give separate figures for the spending by the Training Agency or Manpower Services Commission on (a) television advertising, (b) radio advertising, (c) newspaper advertising and (d) other promotional material in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what are his latest estimates for 1990-91 and budgets for 1991-92.

Mr. Jackson : The information requested is given in the table.


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           |TV (£)    |Radio (£) |Press (£) |Other (£) |Total (£)            

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

Actual                                                                       

1979-80    |N/A       |N/A       |-         |-         |-                    

1980-81    |424,102   |4,127     |2,496,440 |2,588,540 |5,513,209            

1981-82    |-         |62,896    |1,814,935 |2,784,279 |4,662,110            

1982/83    |-         |89,654    |2,984,230 |3,222,031 |6,295,915            

1983-84    |1,479,748 |17,434    |764,409   |2,670,666 |4,932,257            

1984-85    |944,975   |3,477     |717,057   |4,473,283 |6,138,792            

1985-86    |9,676,257 |311,537   |1,867,286 |5,111,180 |16,966,260           

1986-87    |15,624,000|258,631   |6,927,370 |12,124,000|34,934,001           

1987-88    |17,321,000|26,841    |6,950,159 |11,647,000|35,945,000           

1988-89    |12,569,000|-         |5,502,000 |12,449,000|30,520,000           

1989-90    |8,610,000 |56,000    |6,164,000 |12,485,000|27,315,000           

Estimate                                                                     

1990-91    |6,115,000 |-         |3,764,000 |11,269,000|21,148,000           

The total budget for 1991-92 excluding HSE and ACAS is £17.4 million. Detailed decisions on allocation by media as requested have not yet been taken.

From 1991-92, and following the abolition of the Training Agency in November 1990, the Department's advertising and publicity budget, excluding HSE and ACAS, is to be held centrally.

Privatisation

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total sum paid out in fees to outside organisations in the furtherance of privatisation by his Department in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. Jackson : There are fees paid to organisations in furtherance of privatisation by the Employment Department Group--including the former Training Agency and Manpower Services Commission--in the financial period from 1979-80 to 1987-88 inclusive.

Fees to the value of £525,000 were incurred in 1988-89, to the value of £613,000 in 1989-90, and the value of £622,000 in 1990-91. These figures are inclusive of expenses plus VAT.

There is no current privatisation being undertaken, though an outstanding invoice for £30,000 will be paid in the current financial year.

Press and Public Relations

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total expenditure by his Department on press and public relations in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. Jackson : The information requested is given in the table.


Year        |Expenditure            

            |£ million              

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

Actual                              

1979-80 to 1985-86 n/a              

1986-87     |1.08                   

1987-88     |1.014                  

1988-89     |3.185                  

1989-90     |3.331                  

                                    

Estimated                           

1990-91     |3.564                  

Notes:                              

Figures for 1986-87 and 1987-88 are 

for DE information division only.   

Figures for TA are not available.   

Figures for 1988-89 and 1989-90     

represent total expenditure         

separately incurred by DE           

information services branch; the    

two merged in November 1989.        

Expenditure levels for 1991-92 are  

in the process of being set.        

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total expenditure by the Training Agency/MSC on press and public relations in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. Jackson [holding answer 29 April 1991] : The information requested is given in the table.


Year          |Expenditure                

              |(£'000)                    

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

Actual                                    

1979-80       |Not available              

1980-81       |Not available              

1981-82       |Not available              

1982-83       |Not available              

1983-84       |Not available              

1984-85       |Not available              

1985-86       |Not available              

1986-87       |1.08                       

1987-88       |1.014                      

1988-89       |3.185                      

                                          

Estimated                                 

1989-90       |3.331                      

Labour Statistics

Mr. Cousins : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if he will publish a table showing the total number of employees in employment in the northern region in the following categories (a) male full-time, (b) male part-time, (c) female full-time, (d) female part-time, (e) total male and (f) total female, indicating in each case an estimate of the number of such employees paying national insurance contributions.

Mr. Jackson : There is no information relating to national insurance contributions at regional level or on a full-time and part-time basis. The available information is in the table.


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Employees in employment in the northern region-Unadjusted                               

Thousands                                                                               

                   Male                          Female                                 

                  |Full-time|Part-time|Total    |Full-time|Part-time|Total              

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

September 1989<1> |555.0    |40.0     |595.0    |280.0    |240.9    |520.9              

December 1990<2>  |n/a      |n/a      |587.9    |275.1    |255.7    |530.8              

<1> The most recent regional male full-time and male part-time estimates available are  

from the September 1989 census of employment.                                           

<2> The latest date for which regional estimates are available.                         

n/a = Not available.                                                                    



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ACAS

Mr. Cran : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment when he expects to receive the annual report of the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service.

Mr. Howard : I have received the ACAS report for 1990, which has been laid before both Houses of Parliament today. The report is also published today and copies are available from the Vote Office.

Disabled People (Training)

Mr. Rooney : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what criteria are used in deciding if registered disabled persons would benefit from two-year employment training ; and how many people had such extended training in the last period for which figures are available.

Mr. Jackson [holding answer 29 April 1991] : Before 1991 the normal period of training for ET was a maximum of one year. People with disabilities for whom extended training would substantially enhance chances of obtaining suitable employment could be offered up to a further year of training.

As from April 1991, all fixed limits on the duration of ET training were removed. From April 1991 trainees are entitled to a reasonable duration of training having regard to the nature and level of the intended qualification or credits, and to the training needs and prior learning of the trainee. Information about the numbers of people with disabilities who had extended training is not held centrally and could only be provided at disproportionate costs.

ENERGY

Press and Public Relations

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what was the total expenditure by his Department on press and public relations in 1979- 80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. Wakeham : The estimated expenditure in 1990-91 is £657,000. This figure includes :

(i) forecast expenditure by the press office ;

(ii) staff costs (salaries, accommodation and common services) for all permanent information service and support staff in the press office, including the speech writing unit, at 31 March 1991. The corresponding expenditure for previous years is as follows :


        |£              

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

1989-90 |615,000        

1988-89 |475,000        

1987-88 |460,000        

1986-87 |293,000        

Expenditure for the years prior to 1986-87 is not available on a comparable basis.

Currently proposed expenditure for 1991-92 is £677,000.


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Privatisation

Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what was the total sum paid out in fees to outside organisations in the furtherance of privatisation by his Department in 1979-80 and in each following year ; and what is his estimate for 1990-91 and budget for 1991-92.

Mr. Wakeham : Total expenditure on fees paid to outside organisations in relation to the privatisation of Amersham International, Britoil and Enterprise Oil could not be provided without incurring disproportionate costs. Fees paid to outside organisations in the case of the privatisation of British Gas and of the regional electricity companies and the electricity generating companies in England and Wales are as follows :


            |British Gas|Electricity            

                        |industry               

            |£ million  |£ million              

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

1985-86     |1.4        |-                      

1986-87     |162.4      |-                      

1987-88     |10.5       |0.8                    

1988-89     |11.1       |5.5                    

1989-90     |2.2        |12.1                   

The remaining costs resulting from the privatisation of British Gas and of the regional electricity companies and electricity generating companies, including fees paid to advisers, will be published in due course.

WALES

Epilepsy Unit, Cardiff

Mr. Robin Cook : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales when the epilepsy unit at University College Cardiff was closed ; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : The epilepsy unit is independently funded-- largely, I understand, by the pharmaceutical industry to facilitate the development and trial of new drugs. It is not an NHS facility. I understand that the unit is to continue to function on a more limited scale. It is the responsibility of health authorities and general medical practitioners to secure the services they regard as necessary for local residents with epilepsy, as for all other conditions.

Specialist Treatment Centres

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will take steps to ensure that there is no geographical quota which discriminates in favour of any area health authority being able to benefit disproportionately from the three specialist treatment centres for : hip and knee replacement at Rhydlafar hospital, hernias and varicose vein surgery at Bridgend general hospital and cataract surgery at Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : The targets set for each of the treatment centres reflect local waiting lists but otherwise do not discriminate in favour of the host authority.

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will ensure that general practitioners throughout Wales can refer their patients direct to the specialist treatment centre funded by his Department for cataract surgery at Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor.


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Mr. Nicholas Bennett : The right of general medical practitioners to directly to refer patients to the three treatment centres is ensured by the contractual agreements negotiated between the Welsh Office and the centres.

Opticians

Mr. Fearn : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many opticians were registered in Wales in March 1989.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : There were 478 opticians on contract to Welsh FHSAs on 31 December 1989. Of these, 435 were ophthalmic opticians and 43 ophthalmic medical practitioners.

Social Care Plans"

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will place in the Library a copy of the first draft of "Social Care Plans".

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : It is for each social services authority in Wales to decide the distribution of drafts of social care plans. Authorities are required by statute to publish the final version of the first social care plans by 1 April 1992.

Family Health Services Authorities

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if all family health services authorities have now been connected to the all-Wales telecommunications network and the English family health services network.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : As a result of changes to the timetable South Glamorgan is currently the only FHSA in Wales connected to the English FHS and the all-Wales telecommunications networks. Arrangements are in hand to connect the remaining seven Welsh FHSAs to both networks during the period 13 to 17 May 1991.

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will arrange for the quarterly reports on the performance monitoring of family health services authorities' plans to be placed in the Library.

Mr. Nicholas Bennett : The performance monitoring of FHSA business plans, indicated in the "NHS Wales : Agenda for Action 1991-93", will not be the subject of separate report documents but will be part of the continuing management discussions between the NHS directorate of the Welsh Office and FHSAs.

Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will place a copy of all family health services authorities' business plans in the Library.


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