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Abattoirs

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what proposals he has to increase the number of abattoirs in Wales. [30999]

Mr. Gwilym Jones: Investment in abattoir facilities remains essentially a matter for the commercial judgment of individual operators.

Care and Repair Schemes

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations he has received from Care and Repair Cymru; and if he will make a statement. [30751]

Mr. Gwilym Jones: Representations have been received from Care and Repair Cymru in response to the consultation paper, "The Welsh Office and Local Government: Redefining the Relationship". The issue was also discussed at a recent meeting between my officials and the organisation's director.

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what representations his Department has received concerning changes in its support for local care and repair schemes; and if he will make a statement. [30759]

Mr. Jones: The Welsh Office has received representations from Care and Repair Cymru, voluntary organisations including individual care and repair schemes, local authorities, housing associations and private individuals. These representations are being considered.

Dental Services

Mr. Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many dentists have left NHS service during the last year in (a) Torfaen, (b) Gwent and (c) Wales. [30980]

Mr. Hague: Information on the number of dentists who stop treating NHS patients is not available centrally. However, the number of dentists treating NHS patients in Gwent and Wales is shown in the following table. Separate information for Torfaen is not available centrally.

Number of dentists treating at least some NHS patients

GwentWales
At 31 December 1994140850
At 31 December 1995141856


6 Jun 1996 : Column: 548

GP Fundholding

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is his estimate of the extra annual administrative costs of the general practitioner fundholding system in Wales. [31000]

Mr. Hague: Reimbursement to general practitioner fundholders in respect of expenses covered by management allowances since the inception of the scheme is as follows:


Expenditure figures for 1995-96 are not yet available, but provisional accounts suggest that the total sum amounted to some £6.7 million.

Mr. Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how he proposes to ensure that the general practitioner fundholding system relates to health authority plans for local people. [31002]

Mr. Hague: Guidance on ensuring the accountability of GP fundholding practices was issued by the Welsh Office on 27 September 1995.

The guidance emphasised the need for GP fundholders and health authorities to develop partnerships to meet agreed national and local health priorities and to set out the main action required in the performance agreements between individual practices and authorities.

I have arranged for copies of the guidance to be placed in the Library of the House.

Disabled Employees

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many registered disabled people are employed by his Department; and what percentage this is of the total. [30777]

Mr. Hague: The number of registered disabled staff employed by my Department is 33. This represents 1.4 per cent. of the total staff employed.

A further five registered disabled staff are employed in my Department under the sheltered placement scheme.

Pontypool Bypass

Mr. Murphy: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on delays to work on the Pontypool bypass, A4042; and what penalties will be levied on the contractor. [30978]

Mr. Gwilym Jones: The contractor, Shephard Hill Civil Engineering Ltd., has experienced three days' delay as a result of adverse weather.

Liquidated damages would be applied to the contract in the normal way for late completion.

Direct Grant Schools

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many primary and secondary schools (a) are direct grant and (b) are seeking direct grant status; and if he will make a statement. [31132]

6 Jun 1996 : Column: 549

Mr. Hague: There are no longer any direct grant schools in Wales and, currently, no plans to seek applications.

School Health (Children)

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will set up a study of the condition of the teeth of primary and secondary school children in Wales with particular reference to the effects of the level of calcium in their diets. [31148]

Mr. Hague: I have no plans to do so.

Beef Farmers

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how he will assist beef farmers in respect of cattle under 30 months old; and if he will make a statement. [31140]

Mr. Gwilym Jones: The beef special premium and suckler cow premium schemes are available to assist beef producers. I have arranged for payments of subsidies to Welsh beef producer to be accelerated and over £66 million--representing 90 per cent. of livestock payments--was paid during April 1996. In addition, the Commission is recommending supplementary payments under these schemes which the Agriculture Council is considering this week.

Free School Milk

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the proportion of primary schools which are participating in the discretionary scheme for supplying school children under the age of five years with free school milk in each county or old county. [31155]

Mr. Hague: The EU school milk subsidy scheme is administered by the intervention board executive agency. I have asked the chief executive, Mr. G. Trevelyan, to reply direct to the hon. Member on this matter and will arrange for a copy to his reply to be placed in the Library of the House.

Farm Visits

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many farms and in what locations he has visited in 1996. [31133]

Mr. Hague: None. I visited a number of farms in 1995 and intend to do so again later this year.

Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

Mr. Ron Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will make a statement on (a) the operation of the Government's measures in Wales to deal with the BSE crisis; and what assessment he has made of their effectiveness. [31081]

Mr. Hague: The Government have introduced a number of measures to assist those involved in the beef industry. These include direct support to renderers and abattoirs and schemes to remove older beef from the food chain and to help beef producers until the market recovers. It is too early to assess the effectiveness of these measures on the overall state of the industry.

6 Jun 1996 : Column: 550

City Technology Colleges

Mr. Barry Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many CTC colleges he proposes for Wales; and if he will make a statement. [31131]

Mr. Hague: I should be glad to consider an application to establish a CTC from any potential sponsor.

Welsh Language

Mr. Wigley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what restrictions European law places on the advertising of contracts for the supply of goods or services by local authorities though the medium of the Welsh language. [31145]

Mr. Hague: There are no restrictions on the advertising of contracts for the supply of goods or services by local authorities through the medium of Welsh. However, advertisements that are required to be placed in the Official Journal of the European Communities must be in one of the Community's official languages.

Youth Training

Mr. Rowlands: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is his latest estimate of the number of young people currently on youth training in each training and enterprise council area; and what were the equivalent figures in the last three years. [31358]

Mr. Jonathan Evans: The figures requested are contained in the following table:

Numbers in training on youth training/youth credits/modern apprenticeships(5) at the end of March

1993199419951996
Gwent2,4292,8612,4492,418
Mid Glamorgan2,5033,4203,1923,522
North-east Wales1,5261,6791,9281,491
North-west Wales2,1662,0531,9461,928
Powys672653694639
South Glamorgan1,7211,6221,7541,880
West Wales4,1023,8573,6974,303
Wales total15,11916,14515,66016,181

(5) Includes accelerated and modern engineering apprenticeships.



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