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Column 349James Rawson
Trevor Brooking MBE (Chairman)
Mike Turner (Vice-Chairman)
Dr. Thomas Crisp
Ms Liz Hobbs MBE
Ms Fatima Whitbread MBE
Fred Smallbone (Chairman)
John Lelliott (Vice-Chairman)
Reverend Theo Samuel
Raman Subba Row CBE
Geoffrey Dunn (Chairman)
Dr. Ida Webb (Vice-Chairman)
Miss Suzanne Law
Ms Dinah Simmons
Mrs. Phyllis Avery (Chairman)
David Duckham MBE
Mrs. Rosalie Monbiot OBE
Steven Redgrave MBE
Don Perry (Chairman)
Professor Neil Armstrong (Vice-Chairman)
Mrs. Linda Bishop-Bailey
Mrs. Christina Cahill
Dr. Ann Trotman MBE
Jim Munn MBE (Chairman)
David Moorcroft (Vice-Chairman)
Mrs Zabida Choudhry
Sir Nigel Broakes (Chairman)
Tony Doggart (Vice-Chairman)
Professor Eric Spiller
Professor David Vaughan
Lord Palumbo of Walbrook (Chairman)
Denys Hodson (Vice Chairman)
Professor Christopher Frayling
Sir Ernest Hall
Professor Colin St. John Wilson
Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage when the reduction in the television licence fee for registered blind persons was first introduced ; when it was set at £1.25 ; and what plans he has to increase it.
Mr. Brooke : The reduction in the television licence fee for registered blind people dates from the introduction of combined television and radio licences in 1946, when registered blind people became entitled to a reduction equivalent to the amount of the radio licence fee. This reduction replaced free radio licences for registered blind people, a concession believed to have been first introduced in 1926. Radio licences were abolished in 1971. The reduction in the television licence fee for registered blind people has remained at £1.25 ever since. The Government have no plans at present to increase the value of the concession.
Mr. Barry Porter : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what steps he proposes to take to ensure that tickets for the national lottery are not sold to children, or in inappropriate places.
Mr. Brooke : I have today laid before this House regulations under section 12 of the National Lottery etc. Act 1993 to establish a number of restrictions on the manner in which national lottery tickets may be sold. Specifically, these regulations prohibit : the sale of tickets to any person under the age of 16 ; the sale of tickets in the street or at a person's home ; sales of tickets in licensed betting offices, at racetracks, in amusement arcades, and in any bingo or gaming club ;
the sale of tickets by unattended vending machines.
These regulations will ensure that the sale of national lottery tickets is properly controlled without creating unnecessary restrictions which would interfere with the selected operator's ability to make the lottery the great success we all expect.
Ms Mowlam : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what assessment he has made as to the adequacy of the administrative arrangements for the Arts Council as a channel for distributing money flowing from the proposed national lottery.
Mr. Sproat [holding answer 7 February 1994] : The Arts Council has been selected as a channel for distributing national lottery money, because of its experience and expertise in arts funding. The council is currently setting in place the necessary administrative arrangements, which I have no doubt will be adequate to discharge its responsibilities effectively.
Mr. Rooker : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage if he will list those topics on which it is not his practice to answer parliamentary questions ; and if he will list any recent changes in the practice of his Department.
Mr. Alan Williams : To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage, pursuant to his answer of 31 January, Official Report , columns 513-14 , regarding accommodation at the occupied royal palaces, on what basis and by whom it is determined which staff pay rent, how it is assessed and reviewed and by whom ; to whom it is paid ; and how many pay rent for accommodation relating to each of the households.
Mr. Sproat [holding answer 7 February 1994] : As a general rule, more senior staff pay rent and more junior staff have the benefit of accommodation taken into account in determining wage levels. The postholders who pay rent were determined in discussion with the Treasury some years ago.
Rent, referred to as official accommodation deduction, is paid by 35 of the 220 employees to whom accommodation is provided. The rent or OAD is set at 8.5 per cent. of pre-tax salary, as notified by the Treasury. The amount deducted therefore increases automatically in line with salary increases. Those who pay rent are all employees of the Queen's household. The benefit of paying the reduced salary--the gross salary less the OAD--accrues to the account from which the salary is paid, principally the Queen's civil list or the grant in aid.
For other employees, the value of accommodation is taken into account in determining wage salary levels. In the past, this was not done on a consistent basis for all employees. However, since the revised civil list arrangements were entered into with effect from 1 January 1991, the household has undertaken a complete review of its grading and salary structure, including the introduction of performance-related pay, and pay levels for each post now take into account the value of the benefit of accommodation on a formalised basis. For the majority of the residences, which are modest flats or cottages, the value is taken as the local authority rent for a similar-sized property. The account from which the salary is paid again benefits from the reduced salary cost.