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Mr. Austin-Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what assessment he has made of any surplus or shortfall of affordable family homes in London in 1998; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Atkins: I represented the United Kingdom at the Environment Council held in Brussels on 9 March. During the lengthy discussion on the proposed directive on integrated pollution prevention and control, I made it clear that the UK continued to welcome this proposal. I indicated that we wished to see a directive which achieved a high level of protection for the environment while providing a level playing field for industry in the UK. The subsequent debate assisted in resolving a number of issues but an overall agreement was not reached.
The Council agreed conclusions setting out the EU's position for the first conference of the parties to the UN climate change convention, building on those agreed at its meeting in December. The conclusions call for the negotiation of a protocol to the convention, setting out new targets and timetables beyond 2000 and for the agreement by all developed countries of policies and measures aimed at reducing emissions of greenhouse gases.
There was a useful initial discussion of the proposals for an ambient air quality framework directive, in which I indicated UK support for measures to tackle the problems of air pollution. Discussions also took place on the proposals for the ecological quality of water and on the revision of the Seveso directive.
Column 682The Council also agreed a paper setting out the current EU position on the preparations for the third meeting of the Commission on Sustainable Development.
Dr. Twinn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what progress has been made in implementing the recommendations in the Monopolies and Mergers Commission's report published in January 1994 on the British Waterways Board; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Atkins: I am pleased to report that the British Waterways Board is continuing to make good progress in implementing the Commission's recommendations. I am placing a copy of its second response in the Library of the House.
The board had already made significant progress in addressing the Commission's findings and recommendations by the time it submitted its first response in June 1994. Since then, the BWB has generally met its target for further action. A review of management systems has been completed which has identified new user requirements, including the need for new financial systems and improved management information, as well as offering opportunities for cost savings. In addition, a review of procurement procedures has also been completed. I particularly welcome the board's decision to undertake an employment review of the full range of its employment practices, taking into account the Commission's recommendations on staff appraisal and training.
The board has also taken action to promote its waterways through the launch of its ` Canals Alive' marketing campaign and is undertaking more market research into demand for waterway recreation, including commissioning, jointly with the National Rivers Authority, research into demand for leisure boating.
I shall pay particular heed to the Commission's recommendations when considering with the board's strategy for the future and the criteria against which its performance should be assessed. I shall continue to take into account as appropriate the Commission's recommendations on development of BWB property, development control, the prospects for BWB securing contributions to its costs from those who benefit from its waterway activities but do not at present contribute, wayleaves and inland waterway commercial transport. The board aims to produce its final report on the implementation of the Commission's recommendations by January 1997. I shall make a further statement when it is received.
Column 683that Professor Malcolm Grant, an existing member of the commission, has agreed to take on the chairmanship on an interim basis.
Mr. Tipping: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how much has been spent or is contracted to be spent in (a) England and (b) each county in England on the public access element of the countryside stewardship scheme for the period of the scheme's existence.
|Total access |payments |and/or |commitments |1992-93 to |2004-5 County |£ ---------------------------------------------------------- Northumberland |501,465 Cumbria |284,741 Tyne and Wear Metropolitan |14,236 Durham |127,834 Cleveland |64,763 Lancashire |152,064 Merseyside Metropolitan |1,980 Greater Manchester Metropolitan |12,720 Cheshire |22,003 North Yorkshire |967,642 West Yorkshire |13,954 Humberside |76,471 South Yorkshire |25,646 Derbyshire |257,355 Nottinghamshire |36,607 Staffordshire |25,644 Leicestershire |230,880 Hereford and Worcester |67,787 Warwickshire |87,965 Northamptonshire |435,321 Shropshire |84,402 Lincolnshire |291,896 Cambridgeshire |167,873 Norfolk |295,047 Suffolk |165,238 Bedfordshire |87,695 Oxfordshire |119, 526 Buckinghamshire |155,504 Hertfordshire |77,032 Berkshire |69,428 Greater London Metropolitan |28,031 Hampshire |110,013 Surrey |98,515 Kent |331,850 West Sussex |192,568 East Sussex |273,988 Isle of Wight |73,304 Essex |124,933 Gloucestershire |134,377 Cornwall |731,083 Devonshire |277,933 Somerset |195,164 Avon |198,657 Wiltshire |453,169 Dorset |251,012 Total |8,395,316
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if he will list all the current charges made to members of the public for the use of the services provided by the Public Record Office at (a) Chancery lane and (b) Kew; what plans he has to increase these charges; what new charges he intends to introduce; and when he plans to make these increases or introduce new fees.
Mr. John M. Taylor: The question concerns a specific operational matter on which the chief executive of the Public Record Office is best placed to provide an answer. I have accordingly asked the chief executive to reply direct.
Letter from Sarah Tyacke to Mr. Paul Boateng, dated 13 March 1995:
Parliamentary Question: Charges for Services
I have been asked by the Lord Chancellor's Parliamentary Secretary to reply to your question about charges made to members of the public for the use of services provided by the Public Record Office at Kew and Chancery Lane.
The current charges are listed in the Statutory Instrument made on 6 September 1994. I enclose a copy. It applies to Kew and to Chancery Lane.
A revised Statutory Instrument is under discussion and if approved by the Lord Chancellor it is intended that it will be made so as to come into force on 1 May 1995.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what was the cost of his Department's survey last year of 4,000 court users; and when he intends to publish the results of that survey.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what representations he has received from (a) hon. Members and (b) other people concerning the creation of the Court Service agency; and what percentage of these representations has been (i) in favour and (ii) not in favour of its creation.
Mr. John M. Taylor: I have received a number of representations from hon. Members and others on this issue. Most have been concerned with practical considerations and have not addressed the question of the desirability or otherwise of agency status for the Court Service. In the process of working towards the launch of the Court Service as an agency, we have consulted the judiciary and a number of interested organisations including the Bar, the Law Society and the departmental trade union side. We have received responses from these organisations and have held discussions with some of them.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what the total cost of management consultancy and other professional consultancy fees will be for the launch of the Court Service agency.
Mr. John M. Taylor: The total amount of management consultancy and other professional consultancy fees incurred so far in the process of making the Court Service into an executive agency is £103,966. This amount has been spread over the two financial years 1993 94 and 1994 95. There may be a very small amount of further expenditure on consultancy fees in the remaining period leading up to the launch of the Court Service as an agency.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if there was an open and competitive selection process for the post of chief executive of the Court Service agency; and when and where this post was advertised.
Mr. John M. Taylor: Following the decision to proceed with agency status for the Court Service, the existing head of the court service was appointed in 1993 as chief executive designate, with the intention that he should continue in post to prepare the court service for establishment as an agency and to take the agency into its early stages. It is intended that the post will be subject to publicly advertised open competition not later than April 1997.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what is the current job title and salary of Michael Huebner; for how many years' duration is his current contract for the position of chief executive of the Court Service agency; and what his total salary will be for each of those years.
Mr. John M. Taylor: At present, Michael Huebner is grade 2 head of the court service and chief executive designate of the Court Service agency. His current salary is £73,750. On becoming chief executive of the Court Service agency, he will remain an established civil servant on the same terms and conditions of employment as at present. Any performance pay awards he receives will, however, take into account the achievement of the targets set for the Court Service. In common with other members of the proposed senior civil service, he will in due course be expected to sign a contract, as outlined in the White Paper on the civil service.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what provisions for performance-related pay on top of basic salary are contained in the contracts of (a) the chief executive and (b) other staff of the new Court Service Agency; what criteria will determine whether or not this additional pay is awarded; and what is the maximum amount each could claim under these provisions.
Mr. John M. Taylor: Staff of the Court Service, including the first chief executive, will remain as established civil servants and will not be employed within the agency on a contractual basis, with the proviso that it is intended that contracts will be introduced for the proposed senior civil service as announced in the White Paper "The Civil Service: Taking Forward Continuity and Change" (CM2748). For details of the performance pay scheme for the chief executive, I refer the hon. Member to the answer I have given today to his question on the salary and contract of Michael Huebner. Performance pay awards to staff at grade 3 in the Court Service will continue to be made by the permanent secretary on the basis of performance against objectives and on advice from the chief executive, taking into account job weight and loading.
Column 686The pay of staff in the Court Service below grade 3 is currently determined in accordance with a number of national pay agreements negotiated by the Treasury. The provisions of these agreements are described in the "Civil Service Management Code", a copy of which is in the Library. Under the agreements staff receive pay increases in accordance with their personal performance, measured in terms of the overall "box mark" in their annual report. The maximum increases which may currently be awarded to individual staff in the main grades employed in the Court Service are as shown in the following table.
Grade |Box Mark|London |National |£ |£ --------------------------------------------- Grade 4 |Box 1 |3,786 |3,786 |Box 2 |3,029 |3,029 |Box 3 |2,272 |2,272 Grade 5 |Box 1 |2,851 |2,851 |Box 2 |2,281 |2,281 |Box 3 |1,711 |1,711 Grade 6 |Box 1 |2,398 |2,398 |Box 2 |1,918 |1,918 |Box 3 |1,439 |1,439 Grade 7 |Box 1 |1,950 |1,950 |Box 2 |1,560 |1,560 |Box 3 |1,170 |1,170 SEO |Box 1 |1,919 |1,844 |Box 2 |1,478 |1,419 |Box 3 |832 |798 HEO |Box 1 |1,535 |1,472 |Box 2 |1,182 |1,133 |Box 3 |665 |637 EO |Box 1 |1,120 |1,075 |Box 2 |862 |826 |Box 3 |484 |465 AO |Box 1 |1,003 |938 |Box 2 |771 |721 |Box 3 |554 |509 AA |Box 1 |792 |740 |Box 2 |609 |568 |Box 3 |431 |402 Bailiff |Box 1 |1,062 |992 |Box 2 |816 |763 |Box 3 |576 |539
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what is the cost of the Court Service for the current financial year; what the cost has been for each of the last five financial years; and what the planned cost of the Court Service agency will be for each of the next three years.
|£000 --------------------------------- 1989-90 |396,125 1990-91 |453,970 1991-92 |544,626 1992-93 |586,199 1993-94 |581,656 1994-95 |<1>598,411 1995-96 |<2>627,024 1996-97 |<2>632,298 1997-98 |<2>632,254 <1> Estimated. <2> Planned.
The figures showing the planned expenditure from 1995 96 onwards cannot be compared directly with the current and previous year's expenditure. The Court Service becomes an executive agency on 3 April 1995, and a number of the central functions which are currently provided by the Department's headquarters will transfer on that date to the Court Service's headquarters.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when the Department began paying rent on the new Court Service agency headquarters; what the yearly rent is; how long the lease is for; when Court Service staff are to move in; and what is the cost of furnishing and equipping the headquarters for its first two years of operation.
Mr. John M. Taylor: The Court Service headquarters will be accommodated in an office building in which the Department has leased space since 1989; two additional floors were acquired in the building in 1994. However, as part of providing a separate headquarters for the Court Service, the Department has rationalised its departmental headquarters accommodation, which will result in savings. The rental costs of the accommodation that will ultimately be allocated to the Court Service headquarters is approximately £2 million per annum. There are several leases under which the accommodation is held, all due to expire in 2003 4.
Some of the staff who will be working in the Court Service have already moved into their proposed headquarters accommodation; the remainder, currently accommodated in buildings elsewhere on the estate, will be moved into the building as part of the on-going rationalisation process over the remaining months of this year. The cost of furnishing and equipping the Court Service headquarters is anticipated to be minimal as staff moving into the Court Service headquarters building have taken, and will continue to take, furniture and equipment with them from their previous locations.
Mr. Boateng: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what office rental and other administrative savings are being made by moving Court Service staff to new Court Service agency headquarters.
Mr. John M. Taylor: The setting up of a headquarters for the Court Service has taken place at the same time as a wider rationalisation of the Lord Chancellor's Department's headquarters estate. This is anticipated to provide estimated savings of £1.8 million in 1995 96. These savings include office rental and estimated administrative costs.
Mr. Alfred Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent representations he has had from the Greater Manchester passenger transport authority in regard to the proposed M62 relief road; what reply he is sending; what action he is taking; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Watts: The chairman of the Greater Manchester passenger transport authority wrote to my hon. Friend the Secretary of State on 10 February requesting an early announcement about the future of the proposed M62 relief road.
The authority was advised that on 22 June 1994 my hon. Friend the Member for Salisbury (Mr. Key) announced further studies of the M62 which are now in progress. The studies are expected to take about two years to complete. The authority is among those who have been invited to assist in the work.
The Minister for Railways and Roads, Mr. John Watts, has asked me to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for Transport, how many priority 1 road building schemes due to start this year he now anticipates will begin construction this year. The `Trunk Roads in England 1994 Review' did not give a Priority to any of the schemes listed as agreed 1994/95 starts.
On 2 March 1995 Mr. Watts announced a revised target of 13 new starts this year. I expect to have awarded contracts for all these schemes by the end of the financial year.
Mr. Tyler: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much he estimates it will cost his Department this year to compensate house owners for the loss of value on their property due to road building projects.
As you know, the Minister for Railways and Roads, Mr. John Watts, has asked me to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for Transport, how much he anticipates it will cost his Department this year to compensate house owners for the loss of value on their property due to road building projects.
Compensation for loss of value is not separately identified from expenditure on acquisition of property in central budgets or expenditure returns. Therefore, I am sorry that this information cannot be provided except at disproportionate cost.
As you know, the Minister for Railways and Roads, Mr. John Watts, has asked me to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for Transport, how many of the targets for progress set for Priority 1 road building schemes planned this year will now be achieved on schedule.
Mr. Watts announced on 2 March a revised set of milestones for the Agency. Of the 33 milestones set for Priority 1 schemes the Agency has already met 29 and expects to meet another one before the end of the financial year. The 3 remaining schemes have been delayed to accommodate further traffic appraisal.
Sir David Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many (a) letters and (b) other forms of representation he has received since 1 January (i) in favour of and (ii) against the western route bypass for Newbury, Berkshire.
Mr. Watts: Since 1 January we have received some 230 letters and 2,400 pre-printed postcards supporting the western bypass route for Newbury. Most of these came from the local Newbury area. We have also received some 220 letters opposing the western bypass route for Newbury. About half of these came from outside the local area.
Mr. Norris: I have no such plans. We are considering responses to last year's consultation exercise on the scope for a civil enclave for business aviation within the existing infrastructure at Northolt, and hope to make a statement on that shortly.
Mr. David Marshall: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport on how many occasions United Kingdom-registered airline operators have been (a) granted and (b) refused permission to operate aircraft registered in countries outside the European Union.
Norwegian-registered aircraft to which the EC third aviation package applied from August 1993. These figures do not include late, short-term substitutions for aircraft which had become unserviceable due to technical problems. With one exception, all these applications were granted.
Mr. David Marshall: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the legal implications of the joint aviation requirements which are now being promoted by the Civil Aviation Authority; and what assessment he has made of whether they should be adopted in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Norris: Joint aviation requirements are complex technical requirements agreed by the joint aviation authorities. There are several draft JARs currently being developed by the JAA. The Civil Aviation Authority participates fully in the development of the JARs and makes a thorough assessment of their implications. The United Kingdom will not approve a JAR unless the CAA is satisfied that it would enable the UK to maintain its very high level of aviation safety.
Mr. Alex Carlile: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many civil actions for damages arising from alleged medical negligence were started against each NHS trust in Wales in (a) 1992 and (b) 1993 and (c) 1994.
Mr. Redwood: The information requested is not readily available. I will write to the hon. Gentleman with the information as soon as possible. A copy of the letter will be placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) what consultation he has had with the member at the European Commission responsible for regional development in relation to the calculation of European regional development fund receipts to the Welsh development agency in those financed years where no European regional development fund programme has yet been agreed;
(2) what consultation he has had with the European Commission in relation to the anticipation of European regional development fund receipts by the Welsh development agency; and what agreement he has reached as to the level of fund receipts anticipated in the agency's corporate plan; and
(3) what consultations he has had with the chairman of the Welsh development agency regarding the methods of estimating receipts from the European regional development fund to the agency in (a) 1995 96, (b) 1996 97 and (c) 1997 98.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on the incidence of breast cancer in Wales and the success rate of its treatment, relative to the rest of the United Kingdom; and what plans there are to introduce stem cell removal and replacement treatment after high dose chemotherapy, with a view to its establishment as a clinical treatment for breast cancer under the national health service.
Mr. Redwood: The incidence of breast cancer in Wales is above the average for England and Wales. Information on the success rate of treatment, either in Wales or in comparison with the rest of the United Kingdom, is not centrally held. The national breast screening programme, undertaken in Wales by Breast Test Wales, is enhancing the prognosis for women in the most vulnerable age group through early detection of the disease.
I am advised that high dose chemotherapy involving stem cell removal and replacement is a relatively new procedure. In some rarer tumours the technique is becoming well established but for the most common cancers, including breast cancer, treatment is advised only as part of a properly designed clinical trial.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, (1) if he will make a statement on the appointment of the chairmen of the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff Royal Infirmary trust and the Cardiff community healthcare trust;
(2) what information he had in relation to the political party affiliation of the successful candidates for appointment as the chairmen of the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff Royal Infirmary trust and the Cardiff community healthcare trust prior to their appointment; what account he took of it; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Redwood: Posts to chair the University Hospital of Wales and Cardiff Royal Group NHS trust and the Cardiff community healthcare NHS trust were advertised in the national and local press in December 1994. Both the successful candidates applied, along with over 40 others. A panel of officials chaired by the accounting officer for the NHS in Wales conducted a sift of applicants and recommended a shortlist of candidates to Ministers.
Candidates were interviewed before appointments were made. The Welsh Officer does not seek information about the political affiliations of candidates for public appointment, as it is not relevant.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to his oral statement of 2 March, Official Report , column 1281, to the Morriston hospital cardiac surgery unit, what is his current estimate of capital expenditure on the unit during (a) 1995 96 and (b) 1996 97.
Mr. Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what factors he will take into account in considering the award of an operating licence to Browning Ferris plc in Newport; and when he expects to announce his decision.
Mr. Gwilym Jones: My right hon. Friend's principal concern is to establish whether the plant can be operated without pollution of water or danger to public health. In determining this, he will take account of all relevant factors. His decision will be announced as soon as possible.
Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received regarding the United Nation's Target 2000 housing strategy; and if he will make a statement on how his Department is seeking to meet this target.
Mr. Redwood: The Welsh Federation of Housing referred to the target in a report which it discussed with me in January. The Government's aims and objectives for housing in Wales are set out in "An Agenda for Action", a copy of which is available in the Library of the House.
Mr. Morgan: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what clawback arrangements will apply to the payment of a derelict land clearance grant for land reclamation and asbestos removal at the Blue Circle site at Rhoose; when Blue Circle Industries acquired the site; on what date it first enquired about derelict land clearance grants to (a) his Department and (b) the Welsh development agency; and what consultations there have been with the two relevant local authorities concerning the after-use of the site.
Mr. Redwood: The administration of the land reclamation programme in Wales is the responsibility of the Welsh development agency. I have, therefore, asked the chief executive of the agency to write to the hon. Member and will arrange for a copy of his letter to be placed in the Library of the House.