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Ministerial Accountability

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, pursuant to paragraph K8.1 of the Scott report relating to ministerial accountability, what additional measures he proposes to ensure his Department's compliance with paragraph 27 of "Questions of Procedure for Ministers". [17313]

Sir Patrick Mayhew [holding answer 26 February 1996]: I refer the hon. Member to the speech made by my hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade on 26 February, Official Report, columns 589-604.

HOME DEPARTMENT

Prisoners (Transmissible Disease)

Mr. Gerrard: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps are taken to ensure the confidentiality of medical checks on prisoners, including when a case of a transmissible disease is identified. [16703]

Miss Widdecombe: Responsibility for this matter has been delegated to the temporary Director General of the Prison Service, who has been asked to arrange for a reply to be given.

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Letter from A. J. Pearson to Mr. Neil Gerrard, dated 1 March 1996:


Ministerial Meetings (Immigration)

Mr. Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many meetings were held by Ministers in his Department to discuss immigration cases with hon. Members in each year since 1979. [17061]

Mr. Kirkhope: The information requested could be provided only at disproportionate cost. In 1995, over 60 such meetings with hon. Members were held at the Home Office.

Criminal Cases Review Authority

Mr. Mullin: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to his answer of 16 February, Official Report, column 720, if he will list the other sources from which candidates were drawn; and how many of the shortlisted candidates were applicants arising from (a) the advertisement and (b) other sources. [18156]

Mr. Kirkhope: The other sources from which candidates for the post of chairman of the Criminal Cases Review Commission were drawn were executive search, and lists of volunteers and nominees for public appointments drawn up in government. Of the six short-listed candidates, two responded to advertisements and four were found by executive search.

Gambling Controls

Mr. George: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the Gaming Board has endorsed the changes to the controls over gambling announced on 27 February. [18454]

Mr. Kirkhope: The proposals are those of the Government. Nonetheless the Gaming Board has told me that it welcomes the Government's initiative in considering to what extent the controls on casinos and bingo clubs in the Gaming Act 1968 continue to meet present day requirements and in making proposals where the Government believe that controls can be updated or relaxed. The board also welcomes the fact that the Government are putting out their proposals for wide public consultation.

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There is much in the consultation paper published on 27 February with which the board agrees and it will be able to support many of the proposals. There are several significant matters which the board has been asked to discuss with the industries concerned before proposals are finalised; and there are issues on which the board will wish to consider carefully the stance it should adopt.

Mr. George: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what discussions his Department has had with the Gaming Board over the relaxation of regulations on casinos and other locations for gambling. [18455]

Mr. Kirkhope: We have had regular contact with the Gaming Board during the drafting of the proposals in the consultation paper published on 27 February. In particular, the board provided professional advice and comment on the factual analysis underpinning the document and on the practicability of various options for change. Its comments were taken into account in preparing the final version.

Civil Servants (Company Directors)

Mr. Byers: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department which serving civil servants in his Department are presently directors of companies; and if he will indicate for each (a) the name of the company concerned and (b) if the annual remuneration was (i) £1 to £5,000, (ii) £5,000 to £10,000 and (c) above £10,000. [18139]

Mr. Howard: Civil servants do not need permission to undertake and be paid for work outside normal working hours, provided there is no conflict of interest. There is no specific requirement for staff in the Home Office to report directorships held privately and no central record is kept. Any fees paid for such work would in any case be a matter of individual privacy. Only one official of the Home Office and its agencies, Dr. J. Thompson, has been given permission to become a non-executive director of KPMG, for developmental purposes; the appointment has yet to taken up. Under Cabinet Office guidance on developmental directorships, the individuals concerned do not receive payment from the companies concerned.

Scott Inquiry

Mr. Winnick: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he first consulted other Cabinet Ministers about the contents of the report of the Scott inquiry; and where and when such discussions took place and with whom. [16515]

Mr. Howard [holding answer 22 February 1996]: It is not the practice to give details of ministerial meetings.

Ministerial Accountability

Mrs. Clwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, pursuant to paragraph K8.1 of the Scott report relating to ministerial accountability, what additional measures he proposes to ensure his Department's compliance with paragraph 27 of "Questions of Procedure for Ministers." [17311]

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Mr. Howard [holding answer 26 February 1996]: I refer the hon. Member to the speech made by my hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade on 26 February, Official Report, columns 589-604.

TRANSPORT

Roads

Mr. Allen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list (a) the number of kilometres of motorway renewed, (b) the number of kilometres of trunk road renewed, (c) the number of bridges assessed for structural capacity and (d) the number of bridges strengthened by his Department in each financial year since 1989-90, including plans for the current year. [18166]

Mr. Watts: I have asked the chief executive of the Highways Agency to write to the hon. Member.

Letter from Lawrie Haynes to Mr. Graham Allen, dated 1 March 1996:



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