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24 Hour AADT Forecast Flows 1990 2000 2005 2010 |LG |HG |LG |HG |LG |HG --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- A27 Preferred Route * Southerham-Beddingham |- |32,100|36,000|34,900|40,600|37,600|45,200 * Beddingham-Polegate Bypass |- |22,000|24,700|23,900|27,800|25,800|31,000 * Existing A27 near Selmeston |- |4,500 |5,000 |4,900 |5,700 |5,200 |6,300 * Existing A27 near Wilmington |- |4,100 |4,600 |4,400 |5,200 |4,800 |5,800 Do Minimum * Existing A27 Ranscombe Hill |21,250|31,600|35,300|34,300|39,900|37,000|44,500 * Existing A27 near Selmeston |15,100|22,450|25,100|24,400|28,350|26,250|31,600 * Existing A27 near Wilmington |15,100|22,450|25,100|24,400|28,350|26,250|31,600
The Minister for Roads and Railways, Mr. Watts, has asked me to reply to your Parliamentary Question about the timing of an announcement regarding the detrunking of the A40 through Cheltenham. As you know it is intended to detrunk the A40 through Cheltenham, and trunk the A436 from Shipton Solers to Air Balloon following the completion of the A417 Brockworth bypass which includes a new junction with the M5.
Earlier this year consultants reported on the improvements needed to enable the A436 to cater for the expected increase in traffic in the longer term. They also identified cost effective minor measures which can be implemented quickly. Discussions are now being held with Gloucestershire County Council on the procedures and agreements required to take forward the statutory trunking and detrunking orders, but I am not yet in a position to be able to say when these orders will be published.
Mr. Robert Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when the hon. Member for Coventry, North-East will receive the letter on air traffic control training in Kent, referred to in his answer of 31 October, Official Report, column 962.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what is the average and the median time his Department has taken to pay suppliers in each of the last 12 months; and what proportion of bills it took more than six weeks to pay.
Mr. Madden: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects final agreement between all interested parties involved with the west Yorkshire electrification scheme; what is the latest estimated total cost of the scheme; what were the previous estimated total costs; by whom rolling stock is to be supplied and at what cost; when the scheme is expected to be fully operational; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Watts: These are matters for the West Yorkshire passenger transport executive, Railtrack and the train operating unit. However, I understand that discussions are in progress to determine the final scheme cost; that progressive completion and introduction of electric services are planned from spring 1995 onwards and that the PTE is exploring options with the rolling stock companies and other parties for the replacement of the class 308s which will operate the electric local services initially.
Mr. Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage how much public money will be spent on entertaining, Christmas decorations and other festive activities this Christmas season by his Department and Government agencies answerable to his Department; and of this sum how much will be spent in Ministers' private offices and official residences.
Mr. Dorrell: Disaggregated information of this nature is not available. Such costs are covered by my Department's entertainment expenditure, which is contained within the running costs expenditure published in its annual report.
The Department of National Heritage and its agencies have spent the following sums on official hospitality in the two years since the Department was set up:
|Department of |Historic Royal |National |Palaces |Royal Parks |Heritage |Agency |Agency |£ |£ |£ --------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1992-93 |22,037 |17,690 |1,032 1993-94 |18,278 |16,374 |8,541
Mr. Pendry: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage if he intends to appoint management consultants on the restructuring of the Sports Council, on the terms he envisaged in his statement of 8 July, Official Report, columns 584 86.
Mr. Sproat: I am currently considering responses to the consultation on the Government's proposals set out in our 8 July statement. To assist me in this, I have asked the GB Sports Council to provide me with its own view of how its current functions and staffing might be realigned to take account of those proposals. In the light of my analysis, and this further work, I shall be taking final policy decisions and deciding on how these should be implemented.
Mr. Chris Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage how many FM radio frequencies have been issued by the Radio Authority in the Greater London area; and what is the maximum number which may be issued.
Mr. Dorrell: The authority has awarded licences for 11 radio services to use FM frequencies in the Greater London area. The maximum number depends on frequency availability and on the operational characteristics and locations of the transmitters. The Radio Authority has said that it does not envisage advertising any further London-wide licences in the foreseeable future, but intends to advertise more small-scale services for parts of the Greater London area over the next couple of years.
Mr. Chris Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what plans he has to ensure that a new radio frequency or frequencies can be allocated to a station or stations playing mainly young rock music.
Mr. Dorrell: None. The Government assign frequencies to the Radio Authority. Decisions on licences are a matter for the Radio Authority. Section 85 of the Broadcasting Act 1990, which describes the licensing functions of the Radio Authority, makes it clear that the authority must do all it can to secure a diversity of independent radio stations. Licence applicants are free to offer a young rock music format.
Mr. Chris Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what report he has received from the Radio Authority as to its reasons for selecting Crystal and Virgin as the allocated stations for FM licences announced in March.
Mr. Chris Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what discussions he has had with film exhibitors and cinemas proprietors about the provision of access for people with disabilities to cinemas in Britain.
Mr. Dorrell: My Department has had informal discussions with the Cinema Exhibitors Association, which represents 95 per cent. of exhibitors on issues relating to access to cinemas for people with disabilities. The association responded to the consultation document on measures to tackle discrimination against disabled people published by the Government earlier this year.
Mr. Fatchett: To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage if he will list and date those occasions in the last two years when Ministers or officials in his Department have met lobbying companies, prior to a decision being made on the subject of the meeting with the lobbying company.
Mr. Dorrell [holding answer 24 November 1994]: Conditions of service for the staff of my Department and its agencies incorporate the general principles of conduct that require civil servants not to misuse information which they acquire in the course of their duties; not to make use of their official position to further private interests or those of others; and not to receive gifts, hospitality or benefits of any kind from a third party which might be seen to compromise their personal judgment or integrity.
Mrs. Bridget Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what estimate he has made as to the knock-on effects of his Department's proposals to introduce a new system for calculating the management and maintenance allowances for local authority housing upon the social security budget.
Mr. Robert B. Jones: We are consulting local authorities on the housing revenue account subsidy determinations for 1995 96 and our proposals do not include changing the method of calculating the management and maintenance allowances.
Mr. Kirkwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will place in the Library copies of the surveys of "Public Attitudes to the Environment" and "Public Attitudes to Planning (and Development)", the rent-to-mortgage leaflet follow-up, the Home Improvement Agency client survey and "Wasting Energy Costs the Earth".
Mr. Robert B. Jones: A copy of the survey of public attitudes to the environment has been placed in the Library of the House. A copy of the rent -to-mortgage leaflet follow-up survey report and a full report of the Home Improvement Agency client satisfaction survey will be placed in the Library shortly. A summary of the latter survey's findings is included in the publication "Review of the Home Improvement Agency Grant Programme", a copy of which has been placed in the Library. Research for the report on public attitudes to planning and on the Wasting Energy Costs the Earth campaign has yet to be completed.
Mr. Robert B. Jones: As my right hon. Friend the then Minister for Housing, Inner Cities and Construction told the House on 18 July, Official Report , columns 21-23 , we intend to introduce legislation when parliamentary time permits.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what formal or informal conversations, or written correspondence, he or any of his staff have had with any of the Wirral's elected officers or officials on how the single regeneration budget might be spent in the Wirral.
Mr. Curry: Officials in the Government office for Merseyside held six meetings with officers of Wirral metropolitan borough council to discuss potential SRB bids, and wrote to the authority's chief executive in July with preliminary comments on the outline bids under consideration at the time.
Since the final bids were submitted in early September, no meetings or discussions have taken place and no indication has been given of the likely success or otherwise of individual bids.
Column 480One letter was sent to Wirral metropolitan borough council about the relationship between SRB bids and the European Union's urban initiative; and one of the bids has been referred to, but not discussed, in meetings and correspondence about the future of the Cammell Laird shipyard site.
Mr. Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the cost to public funds of the Local Government commission review into local government reorganisation to date; and if he will make a statement regarding its progress.
Mr. Robert B. Jones: The Local Government Commission for England incurred expenditure of £2.056 million in 1992 93 and £5.146 in 1993 94. We are making available grant in aid of some £8.300 million to the commission for 1994 95.
The commission has published final recommendations for 19 shire counties, of which three have been referred back to the commission for further review. Final reports on the remaining counties, including the three second reviews, are due to be submitted to the Secretary of State by the end of the year.
(2) what powers he has to review investigations carried out by Ofwat.
Mr. Atkins: The Director General of Water Services has a duty to consider any complaint made by a customer or potential customer which is referred to him by a customer service committee because it remains unresolved; he also has a duty to consider complaints from customers that a CSC has failed to perform any of its duties. The Secretary of State does not have powers to review investigations carried out by Ofwat, but the parliamentary ombudsman can investigate complaints of personal injustice resulting from Ofwat's administrative actions.
Dr. Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what progress he has made with respect to the section 106 agreement with Aldersgate, in respect of land on Canvey Island; and when he will commence the promised public consultation prior to agreement being finalised.
Column 4811993 94 survey of English housing and is subject to sampling error.
Mr. Hardy: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what action he will take to maintain estate action funding should the funds available for these projects from the single regeneration budget be reduced.
Ms Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps the Government will be taking to ensure the completion of the flue gas desulphurisation fitting programmes (a) at Drax power station and (b) at Radcliffe power station, and the use of FGD at these power stations.
Mr. Atkins: Under part I of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, a condition may be included in the authorisation for a power station, to require its operator to install FGD and to run it whenever that power station is operated, provided that to do so would not be excessively costly and that there is no other preferable technique of preventing or, failing that, minimising and rendering harmless releases of sulphur dioxide, having regard to costs and efficacy. As I indicated in answer to the hon. Member on 22 November, Official Report , columns 66-67 , Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution is currently in discussion with the generators about their generating operations and improvement programmes for each station.
Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many forms have to be completed by local housing associations applying for grants from the Housing Corporation to build affordable housing to meet local needs; and how many questions are on each form.
Mr. Robert B. Jones: Four forms have to be completed by housing associations applying for project approval and grants from the Housing Corporation. A form is completed for each of the following: initial calculation to establish the grant rate for the scheme, application for project approval and grant, application for payment of grant, and the final grant claim. Each form is designed so that check marks can be placed in prepared boxes to ease completion. The first form comprises 14 questions, the second form 16, the third form four, and the fourth form has two questions relating to each house or flat in the scheme.
Ms Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what part the Government expects Drax power station and Radcliffe power station to play in the market for providing clean electricity; and if he will make a statement.
Column 482allocated an annual quota of maximum emissions of sulphur dioxides and oxides of nitrogen for the company's generating operations as a whole. Each company has the freedom to decide the distribution of its quotas between its individual power stations, taking account inter alia of market conditions, subject to meeting the conditions in individual site authorisations issued by Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. As I indicated in answer to the hon. Member on 22 November, Official Report, columns 66 67 , HMIP is currently in discussion with the generators about its generating operations and improvement programmes for each station.
Ms Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many disconnections there have been in the London borough of Lewisham in the past 12 months; how many of these disconnections are attributable to water metering; and what is Thames Water Utilities' programme for water metering in Lewisham.
Mr. Atkins: Data on disconnections by local authority district and by charging method are not available centrally. The Director General of Water Services publishes data on disconnections twice a year, by water company area and by domestic and non-domestic customer. Data on disconnections in the six months to 30 September 1994 were published in an Ofwat news release on 15 November, a copy of which is in the Library. I understand that Thames Water Utilities has yet to decide on its preferred future method of charging domestic customers for water and sewerage services but has a policy of metering all commercial customers. Most water companies meter all new and substantially altered domestic properties.
Salaries for special advisers are negotiated individually in relation to their previous earnings, and are confidential. They are, however, normally paid on a special advisers' salary spine of 34 points ranging from £19,503 to £67,609 or, in some cases, at a rate appropriate to a relevant civil service grade. Appointments are non-pensionable, and the salary spine reflects this.
Mr. Redmond: To ask the Prime Minister if he will set out the considerations which led the Cabinet Secretary not to interview Mohamed Al- Fayed in his investigations into allegations of improper behaviour by Government Ministers.
The Prime Minister: The Crown Appointments Commission is a standing commission of the General Synod of the Church of England. Its membership is set out on page 38 of the current edition of the "Church of England Year Book", a copy of which is available in the Library of the House.
The Prime Minister [holding answer 25 November 1994]: The utility regulators' role is to promote competition and operate price caps in areas of monopoly. Within this framework it is for each company and its shareholders to exercise control of board membership, pay and conditions.
(2) if he will make a statement regarding the letter of 13 November to the Treasury Solicitor from a constituent of the hon. Member for Woolwich, a copy of which was forwarded to the citizens charter unit; and what assessment he has made of the conformity of Her
Column 484Majesty's Government's action in this case with the spirit of the citizens charter.
Mr. Robert G. Hughes: Mr. Hernandez Purnell has been a frequent correspondent with Government Departments about the purchase of both his and his son's property by the Department of Transport. He has written over 400 letters to the Department of Transport alone. Further correspondence in which Mr. Hernandez Purnell himself has inquired about the role of the citizens charter in his complaint has been answered by officials from the citizens charter unit, and letters from the hon. Member of 3 and 22 September 1993 concerning Mr. Hernandez Purnell were replied to on 30 September 1993 by the then Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster.
The citizens charter and the citizens charter unit have only an indirect role in Mr. Hernandez Purnell's dispute with the Department of Transport. The role of the citizens charter unit is to work with Departments in developing their services in line with the principles of the citizens charter, and to encourage good practice in doing this. When members of the public write to the citizens charter unit, the unit tries to ensure that a prompt, full and clear reply is sent. Ultimately, however, it is the responsibility of individual public sector organisations, including Government Departments, to ensure that their services are delivered to charter standards. Where--as in Mr. Hernandez Purnell's case-- correspondence from a member of the public concerns a dispute about departmental policy which is also the subject of legal proceedings, it is not the role of the citizens charter unit to act as an intermediary.
Mr. Bryan Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many (a) further education and (b) higher education lecturers retired early on the grounds of ill-health in the last 10 financial years.
Mr. Bryan Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many (a) part-time and (b) full-time lecturers in colleges of further education there were in each salary grade in each local education authority or otherwise appropriate areas in the last five years for which figures are available.
Mr. Bryan Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what is her Department's estimate of the total funds necessary to undertake essential health and safety repair work at colleges of further education.
Mr. David Porter: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how she plans to finance the expansion of nursery education, targeted through standard spending assessment or specific grant for (a) buildings and (b) revenue funding; and is she will make a statement.
Mr. Forth: My right hon. Friend is now consulting widely a range of interests in pre-school education with a view to drawing up detailed proposals on how to achieve the target for expansion of pre-school provision set by the Prime Minister. The need for additional funding will be determined as part of the development of these proposals.
42. Mr. Heppell: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what legal aid will be available for employees wishing to sue their employers if industrial injuries legislation is changed.
Mr. John M. Taylor: Legal aid is available to employees who qualify for help with their legal costs in pursuing a claim for damages against an employer through the courts. I cannot anticipate the outcome of any future legislative changes.
Mr. Kirkwood: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if he will consider making legal aid available to allow victims of crime or their families to seek appropriate professional advice.