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Mr. Barnes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what provision his Department makes for child care facilities for staff ; what is the extent of subsidy to nursery places and holiday play schemes ; if his Department (a) subscribes to "Childcare Solutions" and (b) makes child care vouchers available ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Howard : Provision has been made for spending of £380,000 in the current financial year on subsidised child care for staff at various locations. This will provide 134 nursery day care places for children under five and approximately 1,000 holiday play scheme places for children from five to 12 years old. These arrangements generally involve a subsidy of about 50 per cent. of the running costs involved. Subsidised child care provision is provided only if it can be justified on value for money grounds.
The Department does not subscribe to "Childcare Solutions" nor make child care vouchers available to staff.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is considered a sufficient duration for a common law heterosexual relationship between a foreign national and a person settled in the United Kingdom for immigration purposes. Mr. Charles Wardle : Each application is considered on its own merits. The duration of the relationship is taken into account along with other factors.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his statement of 4 May, Official Report, columns 823-26 , if (a) the absence of children, (b) the inability to have children or (c) the absence of intent to marry are considered detrimental to applications made by foreign nationals in common law heterosexual relationships with persons settled in the United Kingdom.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 9 May, Official Report, column 11, whether the statistic provided in this reply relating to common law partners include same sex partners of persons settled in the United Kingdom.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Nottingham, North (Mr. Allen) of 16 May, Official Report, column 336, whether there are any other circumstances acceptable as grounds for granting leave to remain to the foreign same sex partner of a person settled in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Charles Wardle : Each application is considered on its own merits. It is not possible to provide an exhaustive list of the circumstances in which leave to remain on the basis of a same sex relationship might be granted.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Nottingham, North (Mr. Allen) of 16 May, Official Report, column 337, how many applications for leave to remain in the United Kingdom made by foreign nationals on the basis of a same sex relationship with a person settled in the United Kingdom have been (a) accepted and (b) rejected since 1990.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Nottingham, North (Mr. Allen) of 16 May, Official Report, column 336 , what is considered a sufficient duration for a same-sex relationship between a foreign national and a person settled in the United Kingdom for immigration purposes.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what is the total amount of money owed in fines by (a) airlines and (b) cross-channel ferry companies under the Immigration (Carriers' Liability) Act 1987 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Charles Wardle : As at 31 May, £19.46 million was owed by airline operators and £1.68 million by ferry operators. Action is being taken to enforce the payment of outstanding charges where necessary.
Column 302secure training centres will be subject to competitive tender. But the total costs of secure training orders are estimated to be in excess of £30 million a year. This estimate includes running, building and financing costs, as well as the cost of post -release supervision and Home Office administration costs.
Dr. Lynne Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will indicate how many local authority secure places have been provided since the enactment of the Criminal Justice Act 1991 ; and if he will provide a list of their locations.
I refer the hon. Member to the reply that I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Wyre Forest (Mr. Coombs) on 22 April at columns 696-97 , which set out a supply plan for the provision by local authorities of an additional 170 secure places for criminal justice purposes.
Mr. Llwyd : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people have been imprisoned in England and Wales in each year since 1990 for non-payment of the community charge, whose principal address was in (a) each district council area in Wales, (b) Wales as a whole, (c) England, (d) Scotland and (e) Northern Ireland.
Mr. Maclean : No information is available centrally regarding the principal address of those committed to custody. The available information is for England and Wales and is published annually in "Prison statistics, England and Wales", table 6.3 of the 1992 edition, Cm. 2581. A copy of this publication is available in the Library of the House. Provisional information for 1993 shows that 1,157 persons--1,041 males and 116 females- -were received into a Prison Service establishment in England and Wales for non-payment of the community charge. Information for Wales, which was based on the numbers sentenced from a court in Wales, by county, has already been given in my earlier reply to the hon. Gentleman on 4 July at column 41.
Mr. Maclean : Drug misuse is an illegal and therefore clandestine activity. It is not possible to produce reliable estimates of the street value of all illicit drug purchases traded annually. No such studies have been commissioned, although the scope for fresh research on this question is kept under review.
Column 304Yorkshire were convicted of possessing or supplying illicit drugs ; and of these how many were convicted of possessing cannabis in each year since 1979.
Mr. Maclean : The number of persons who were found guilty or cautioned in the North Yorkshire police force area for those offences in the years 1986-92 inclusive, is given in the table. Information for earlier years could only be obtained at disproportionate cost. It is not possible to show offenders from the city of York separately.
North Yorkshire police force area Number of persons Year |Supply |Possession with |Possession |Possession of |intent to supply|(all drugs) |cannabis ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ 1986 |18 |3 |222 |196 1987 |16 |5 |281 |256 1988 |6 |2 |100 |90 1989 |17 |3 |152 |139 1990 |16 |6 |147 |131 1991 |13 |11 |101 |85 1992 |15 |4 |211 |176
Mr. Maclean : I understand from the North Yorkshire probation service that it is currently supervising 20 offenders under probation orders following conviction for drug related offences, of whom six are being supervised in York.
Mr. Radice : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what surveys of the views, opinions and attitudes of the staff of his Department have been carried out in the last two years ; and if he will place copies of the findings in the Library.
Mr. Howard : The various agencies and business units of the Home Office are not required to notify the central personnel divisions of staff surveys they conduct. However, we are aware of the following surveys which took place in the two years ending 30 June 1994 :
Title |Date of survey ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Passport Agency Staff Survey |November 1992 Immigration Service (Ports) Staff Survey |December 1992 Fire Service College Customer Satisfaction and Staff Attitude Survey |June/July 1993 Survey of Communications in the Home Office |October 1993 FSD (Finance and Services Directorate of the Immigration and Nationality Department) Quality of Service Programme-Customer |December 1993/ Survey |January 1994 Prison Service Staff Survey |January/February |1994
Copies of the results of these surveys will be placed in the Library, with the exception of the FSD survey. The results of the FSD survey were intended to inform local managers and have not been published.
Mr. Quentin Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what conclusions have so far been drawn by Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution from the trials of Cemfuel at Ribblesdale, Lancashire.
Mr. Atkins : Preliminary results show reduced releases of sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides. Further work to establish release levels for other pollutants is continuing. Comparative assessments of environmental impacts can be attempted only when all the relevant information is to hand.
Rev. Martin Smyth : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement on the latest research with Government support into the use of compressed natural gas as a vehicle fuel.
The Transport Research Laboratory has recently completed its review of existing research on alternative fuels, including compressed natural gas. This work is being developed in a joint study with the Department of Trade and Industry looking at the wider implications of alternative fuels including production and use. In addition, CNG is to be included in the project referred to in the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Coventry, North-East (Mr. Ainsworth) on 28 June at columns 477-78.
Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations he has received from local authorities in relation to the increased demand for local authority housing tenancies from ex-military personnel following the implementation of the Government's "Options for Change" and similar policies.
Mr. Battle : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what additional expenditure has been made available to local authorities by the Government to provide for additional demand created by reductions in the defence establishment ;
(2) what measures he has taken to assist local authorities with increased demand for their housing stock as a result of reductions in the defence establishment.
Sir George Young : Resources for housing capital expenditure by authorities are made available by the Government each year in the form of housing investment programme allocations. HIP allocations in the current financial year total over £1.5 billion. It is for each housing authority to assess and prioritise the housing needs of its area, and to use its resources accordingly.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what study he has made of the problems of conflicting pieces of primary legislation and the training budgets in local government for maintaining the expertise of conservation officers.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make a statement on the application of the Local Government Act 1990 to building preservation trusts in respect of the regulation of companies funded by local authorities ; and what account is taken of expenditure by such trusts in calculating a local authority's annual capital expenditure.
Mr. Baldry : Local authority capital finance is regulated in England and Wales by the Local Government and Housing Act 1989. We intend to make an order applying the main provisions to local authority companies but are still considering the precise extent of that order.
Column 306international scrutiny and consultation in relation to any new or revised discharge authorisation from nuclear reprocessing plants ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Atkins : At the 15th joint meeting of contracting parties to the Oslo and Paris Commissions on 14 to 19 June 1993 Denmark, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain and Sweden accepted Paris Commission recommendation 93/5. The United Kingdom registered a reservation, as did France and Belgium. The EEC abstained. Belgium has since withdrawn its reservation.
Mr. Barnes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what provision his Department makes for child care facilities for staff ; what is the extent of subsidy to nursery places and holiday playschemes ; if his Department (a) subscribes to "Childcare Solutions" and (b) makes child care vouchers available ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Baldry : My Department has 10 workplace nursery places in the Westminster area and four in Bristol, all of which are at interdepartmental nurseries. There are also 11 places at the Building Research Establishment's own nursery. Subsidy up to a maximum of 50 per cent. of the running costs is available.
The Department participates in interdepartmental holiday play schemes in Westminster, Birmingham, Bristol, Bedford and at the Building Research Establishment. Play schemes cater for children from five to 12 years and operate during half-term holidays and main school holidays. The Department does not subscribe to "Childcare Solutions" or make child care vouchers available to staff.
Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what are the planned spending allocations for local community safety and crime prevention initiatives from the single regeneration budget for the financial years 1995-96 ;, 1996-97 ; 1997-98 and 1998-99 ; (2) what proportion of the single regeneration budget the estimates will be allocated to local community and crime prevention initiatives ;
(3) in which ways he proposes to fund local community safety and crime prevention initiatives (a) in Birmingham and (b) nationally through the single regeneration budget.
Mr. Baldry : There are no fixed, centrally determined, spending allocations for categories of initiatives supported by the single regeneration budget from 1995-96 onwards. Subject to on-going commitments, and the funding requirements of the non-departmental public bodies supported by the budget, the level of spending on categories of initiatives such as local community safety and crime prevention will be determined by the success of relevant bids put forward for support by local partnerships in accordance with the bidding guidance for the Budget issued on 14 April 1994, copies of which are in the Library of the House.
Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what measures he has taken to protect existing spending commitments for current section 11-funded schemes under the single regeneration budget ;
(2) what measures he proposes to take to protect existing ethnic minority business initiative spending commitments under the single regeneration budget ;
(3) what measures he proposes to take to protect existing ethnic minority grant commitments under the single regeneration budget.
Mr. Baldry : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment told the House on 4 November 1993, Official Report, column 515, that continuing commitments under the 20 programmes which have been combined in the single regeneration budget will be met. These programmes include the urban part of section 11 funding which has been transferred to the budget, the ethnic minority business initiative and ethnic minority grant.
Mr. Corbett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) what are the existing commitments for ethnic minority grant for (a) the city of Birmingham and (b) nationally in the financial years to 1998-99 ;
(2) what are the existing spending commitments for section 11 funded schemes (a) nationally and (b) for the city of Birmingham for the financial years to 1998-99 ;
(3) what are the existing spending commitments under the ethnic minority business initiative in the financial years up to 1998-99 for (a) the city of Birmingham and (b) nationally.
Mr. Baldry : The estimated level of commitments under these programmes is shown in the table. These figures are provisional ; they contain an estimate of the commitments for schemes due to start in 1994-95, and make assumptions about grant recipients' actual expenditure in 1994-95 and later years. Figures are not shown for section 11 for 1995-96 and later years ; the basis of their calculation is to be the subject of discussions with local authorities.
(a) nationally £ million |1994-95 |1995-96 |1996-97 |1997-98 |1998-99 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- EMBI |0.600 |0.318 |0.134 |- |- EMG |5.860 |2.500 |- |- |- s11 (urban) |60.500 |(see note)|- |- s11 (non-urban) |49.800 |(see note)|- |-
Section 11 Allocations notified to recipients within the city of Birmingham for 1994-95 are as follows :
(b) for the city of Birmingham |£ million ----------------------------------------------- Birmingham city council |4,046,501 George Dixon school |81,865 Hall Green school |9,320 Ninestiles school |16,530 Small Heath school |50,626 Birmingham FE colleges |1,376,534 Joseph Chamberlain college |67,762 Information is not yet available about recipients' expenditure upon which the level of commitment to current approved projects in subsequent years will depend, and local authorities will be consulted before the basis on which future allocations is determined. Within the city of Birmingham, current commitments to the city council are predominantly of five-year duration; but funding for other recipients' current projects, with the exception of George Dixon and Ninestiles schools, ends on 31 March 1995. Ethnic minority grant There are currently four approved projects funded through Birmingham TEC. Three are due to terminate at the end of March 1995 and the fourth at the end of March 1996. Grant expenditure on these four projects in the 1993-94 financial year amounted to around £52,000. Ethnic minority business initiative The estimated existing commitments for Birmingham are £59,000 in 1994-95, £18,000 in 1995-96 and £4,000 in 1996-97.
Mr. Gummer : A second state of the construction industry report, produced jointly by my Department and representatives of the construction industry, has just been completed. Copies have been placed in the Library.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : No assessment has been made specifically for Wales, but the quality of urban air review group has considered the impact of diesel vehicle emissions on urban air quality over the whole of the United Kingdom. A copy of the group's report, "Diesel Vehicle Emissions and Urban Air Quality", published in January 1994, has been placed in the Library of the House.
I will continue to promote increased recycling wherever this is the best practical environmental option.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is his estimate of the total number of local authority homes now sold in Wales, giving the total amount of moneys raised since 1983 ; and if he will provide similar figures for each of the local authority housing authorities in the county of Clwyd.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : Information on the total number of former council owned homes and which are now owned by the families who live in them and the receipts from these sales from April 1983 to March 1994 is shown in the table.
Local authority dwellings sold between April 1983 and March 1994 |Dwellings |Receipts<1> |sold |£000 ----------------------------------------------------- Alyn and Deeside |1,304 |16,348 Colwyn |708 |7,083 Delyn |922 |13,767 Glyndwr |813 |10,295 Rhuddlan |727 |8,239 Wrexham Maelor |3,023 |36,041 Clwyd |7,497 |91,773 Wales |66,744 |799,782 <1>Includes the repayment of principal on local authority mortgages.
Mr. Gwilym Jones : I see a vital enabling role for local authorities in assessing housing need in their areas and facilitating the provision of new housing through housing associations and the private sector.
Mr. Redwood : I refer the hon. Gentleman to my right hon. Friend's reply to the hon. Member for Alyn and Deeside (Mr. Jones) on 9 December at column 307 . Since that date, I have approved the application for grant- maintained status from Mary Immaculate Roman Catholic high school in South Glamorgan.
Mr. Redwood : Average mean ambulance response times are not available. The median response times--the 50th percentile--for ambulances in Powys for the last five available years are shown in the table :
Year |Time in |minutes at |50th percentile ------------------------------------------------ 1988-89 |10 1989-90 |10 1990-91 |9 1991-92 |10 1992-93 |9