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Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what plans he has to review the operation of current employment legislation relating to industrial tribunals in respect of the enforcement of reinstatement decisions.
Miss Widdecombe : The level of awards, including those relating to loss of earnings, is for industrial tribunals to decide, subject to any financial limits which may apply. These limits are reviewed annually and the results of the latest review will be announced in due course.
Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) if he will make it his policy that Tai Cymru devotes its budget primarily towards ensuring there are sufficient houses available to rent ; (2) what assessment he has made of Tai Cymru's policy of insisting that housing associations build houses for sales as well as for rent, with particular reference to its effect on homelessness in Wales.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : I expect that Housing for Wales will market some 10 per cent. of its programme for low-cost home ownership in 1994-95. That will help ensure that more people who wish to and can afford to progress by stages to full home ownership have the chance to do so--and thus avoid being constrained to a lifetime of renting alone. It will also mean that the rented social housing stock, now accounting for about 15,000 lettings per annum, can be managed more flexibly to provide for those in greatest housing need.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what funds for local authority areas were approved by Tai Cymru to be spent by housing associations in Wales in 1992-93 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what measures he plans to introduce to educate patients not to demand unnecessary home visits from doctors ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : The charter for patients in Wales urges patients to take greater responsibility for their own health and to treat health service workers with proper consideration. Health departments and the general medical services committee of the British Medical Association are working together on an initiative to reinforce this message. The "Help Us to Help You" campaign, which we intend to introduce in Wales in April/May 1994, will encourage the responsible use of GP out-of-hours services.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions there have been between the Department of Transport and the Welsh Office over the future of socially necessary railway lines ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what encouragement or directive the Welsh Office has given to local authorities in Wales to make provision of public transport, walking and cycling facilities and traffic management a condition of planning permission, where appropriate.
Sir Wyn Roberts : Guidance on the appropriate use of planning conditions is given in Welsh Office circular 1/85. Planning Policy Guidance Note 6, "Town Centres and Retail Development", encourages local authorities to promote effective traffic management in town centres.
Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many public interest immunity certificates he, or his predecessors, have been asked to sign in each year since 1979 ; how many he or his predecessors declined to sign ; and if he will make a statement of his policy on signing public interest immunity certificates.
A strategic approach was positively encouraged and bids forming part of an acceptable local strategy received priority. Associated factors taken fully into account included value for money, jobs created, voluntary sector input, sustainable economic development and private sector investment.
Within this framework the merits of Aberconwy borough council's bids were assessed against those of competing bids from other authorities for finite resources.
Column 778Officials have arranged to meet officers of the council on Friday 4 March 1994.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much has been expended in preparation of paperwork, reading materials, instruction manuals and files for the implementation of the national curriculum in Wales.
Sir Wyn Roberts : Since 1988, the Welsh Office has spent £20.1 million in respect of the national curriculum in Wales on the development and issue of national curriculum orders, related assessment materials, and guidance for teachers.
Mr. Gareth Wardell : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will announce his decision on the public inquiry held at the Guildhall, Swansea on 8 July 1993 regarding Barlands quarry, Bishopston.
Lord James Douglas Hamilton : This report was prepared as part of general policy advice from officials to the Secretary of State about the proposals for self-governing status submitted by the Dornoch academy school board. It will therefore not be published.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : For school session 1994-95, I propose to lay regulations before the House in due course providing for progressive parental contribution for one assisted pupil in relation to family income as follows :
Part of relevant income to which the |Parental contribution specified percentage applies |(percentage) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- That part (if any) which exceeds £9,450 but does not exceed £10,275 |9 That part (if any) which exceeds £10,275 but does not exceed £11,115 |12 That part (if any) which exceeds £11,115 but does not exceed £12,781 |15 That part (if any) which exceeds £12,781 but does not exceed £15,341 |21 That part (if any) which exceeds £15,341 but does not exceed £18,685 |24 That part (if any) which exceeds £18,685 |33
The relevant income scale is open ended, but the remission can, of course, be given only where the parental contribution is less than the school tuition fee.
Mr. Kynoch : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will make a statement about the performance of the Scottish Agricultural Science Agency against its targets for 1993-94 and the setting of targets for 1994- 95.
For 1994-95 I have set the agency the following key performance targets :
fulfilment of the Service Level Agreement with the Scottish Office Agriculture and Fisheries Department within the running costs voted to the Agency for 1994-95 ;
recovery of full economic costs for charged services ;
formal consultation with all major customers on the quality of the work done by the Agency in 1994-95 ;
completion of 90 per cent. of all scientific tests and analyses within the timescale set by customers ; and
secure national quality management accreditation for the analytical chemistry and pesticide usage work of the Agency.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will list for each of the last four years, and for the current year to-date (a) the location and (b) the Richter scale measurement of earth tremors that have occurred ; and what structural damage was reported.
Mr. Stewart : The British Geological Survey has located 1,478 earthquakes in the United Kingdom and its offshore area in the period January 1990 to mid-February 1994. For seven of these earthquakes, reports have been received of minor damage to properties--none of these has occurred in Scotland. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment has placed the relevant BGS reports covering the information requested in the Library of the House.
Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what number and percentage of women aged 16 to 60 years were employed (a) full time and (b) part time in each Scottish constituency in each year since 1979.
Column 780part-time employees in employment in each Scottish constituency is available from the censuses of employment carried out in 1981, 1984, 1987, 1989 and 1991. This information is on the NOMIS database in the House of Commons Library. Library staff are ready to assist in accessing the information.
Mr. Stewart : Information in exactly the form requested is not available. The number of male employees in employment in each Scottish constituency is available from the censuses of employment carried out in 1981, 1984, 1987, 1989 and 1991. This information is on the NOMIS database in the House of Commons Library. Library staff are ready to assist in accessing the information.
Mr. Worthington : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what percentage of (a) men and (b) women in each age group were (i) in full-time education, (ii) on Government training schemes, (iii) employed, (iv) self- employed, (v) ill or disabled, (vi) unemployed, (vii) retired or (viii) in any other category in each year since 1979 in each Scottish constituency.
Mr. McAllion : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will introduce early legislation making illegal the production, manufacture and distribution of computer discs containing sexually explicit material.
Lord James Douglas-Hamilton : It is already an offence, under section 51(2) of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, for any person to publish, sell or distribute or, with a view to its eventual sale or distribution, make, print, have or keep any obscene material. The definition of material includes any "disc or other kind of recording (whether of sound or visual images or both)". For the avoidance of doubt, a Government amendment has been tabled to the Criminal Justice and Public Order Bill to ensure that computer transmissions are covered by section 51. The need for further legislation will be assessed in the light of the recently published report of the Home Affairs Select Committee on computer pornography.
Mr. Foulkes : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland on how many occasions and on which dates he or any of his Ministers have met the Conservative group on Kyle and Carrick district council in a ministerial capacity.
Mr. Lang [holding answer 21 February 1994] : I expect to meet the Conservative group on Kyle and Carrick district council, among others, on 4 March 1994. My hon. Friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, the Member for Eastwood (Mr. Stewart) met the same group on 16 July 1993. No other such meetings have taken place.
Mr. Robert Smith (Chairman)
Professor Lalage Bown OBE
Mr. Ronald Cramond CBE
The Countess of Dalkeith
Sir Nicholas Fairbairn QC MP
Sir Alistair Grant
Mr. Alexander Grant Gordon CBE
Dr. Hugh Ingram
Professor Peter Jones
Dr. Derek Pringle CBE
Dr. Anna Ritchie
Professor Christopher Smout
Sir John Thomson, GCMG
All members were appointed by the Secretary of State for Scotland.
Hon. Lord Prosser QC (Chairman)
Professor Gordon Benson
Miss Kirsteen Borland
Mr. William A. Cadell
Mrs. Kathleen Dalyell
Dr. Deborah Howard
Mr. Gerald Ogilvie-Laing
Mr. Allen S. Matheson
Professor Tom Ridley
Mr. Robert R. Steedman
Professor Robin G. M. Webster
Mr. H. Roland Wedgwood
Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) how much it cost Ayrshire and Arran health board to re-run the tendering process for the area urology contract between the North Ayrshire and Arran and South Ayrshire NHS trusts ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) what steps the Ayrshire and Arran health board has now taken to ensure that bids for contracts within its area will be considered on a comparable basis ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) if he will make a statement listing the individual members of Ayrshire and Arran health board's evaluation committee ;
(4) pursuant to his answer of 4 February, Official Report, column 962, how many copies were produced by Ayrshire and Arran health board of its 1992-93 annual report and its financial review 1992-93 ; what criteria were applied by the health board in distributing these ; and what arrangements the health board has made to enable the population within the Ayrshire and Arran health board area to be made aware of the contents of the report and the financial review ; (5) what was the involvement of Alan Clark Associates in the preparation and publishing of Ayrshire and Arran health board's annual report and financial review 1992-93 ; and if he will make a statement ;
Column 782(6) what procedure is used by Ayrshire and Arran health board to consider tenders for health services ; which bodies and committees within the health board are involved in this process ; and if he will make a statement ;
(7) what assessment Ayrshire and Arran health board has made of the facilities within the health board that are available for supplying urology services ; what assessment has been made of the effect of the planned new day surgery unit at the Ayr hospital on this provision ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland (1) what involvement Ayrshire and Arran health board had in the decision of the South Ayrshire trust to build new day surgery facilities at the Ayr hospital ; how this decision related to the award of the area urology contract to the South Ayrshire trust ; and if he will make a statement ;
(2) whether Ayrshire and Arran health board orginally envisaged the day surgery unit opened at Crosshouse hospital on 4 October 1993 supplying urology services as part of its remit ; when the proposals were drawn up ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) when the South Ayrshire Trust decided to invest in new day surgery facilities at the Ayr hospital ; whether these plans were considered for inclusion in the original specification of the Ayr hospital before it was put out to tender ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Stewart [holding answer 28 February 1994] : The board agreed with the decision to have day surgery units, but the precise services to be provided were not decided when the decision of principle was taken. Day surgery plans were not included in the original specifications of the Ayr hospital.
Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, pursuant to his answer of 6 December, Official Report, column 84, (1) who made representations to the NHS management executive concerning the award by Ayrshire and Arran health board of the area urology contract to the North Ayrshire and Arran NHS trust which necessitated a re-running of the tendering exercise ;
(2) what information was provided, and by whom, which led the NHS management executive to conclude that the bids from the North Ayrshire and Arran and South Ayrshire trusts had not been prepared on a comparable basis ; and what adjustments were made to the bids to ensure that this was the case.
Mr. Stewart [holding answer 28 February 1994] : Following representations from the chairman of the South Ayrshire Hospitals NHS trust, the then chief executive of the NHS management executive asked Ayshire and Arran health board to explain the background to its decision to award the area urology contract to the North Ayrshire NHS trust. From the information subsequently provided, it appeared that the tender from the North Ayrshire trust was based on marginal costs whereas that of the South Ayrshire trust was based on full economic costs. The health board accepted the NHS ME's view and decided that the two trusts should be invited to re- submit bids based upon a detailed specification.
Mr. Donohoe : To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what current facilities within the Ayrshire and Arran health board area are available to be used for urology services ; and if he will make a statement.