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Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many employees of his Department and its agencies have been recruited from the New Deal; and what percentage of total staff this represents. 
Mr. Chris Smith: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Minister for the Cabinet Office to my hon. Friend the Member for Bradford, North (Mr. Rooney) on 6 July 2000, Official Report, column 286W.
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Millennium Experience Company and the Accounting Officer of the Millennium Commission regarding the request for an additional grant of £38.6 million. 
Mr. Chris Smith [holding answer 19 June 2000]: On 9 June the National Audit Office wrote to the Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee enclosing a paper on the circumstances in which an Accounting Officer Direction was given to the Millennium Commission Accounting Officer. The substance of the application for grant is contained within the paper, which has been placed in the Libraries of the House.
Janet Anderson [holding answer 19 June 2000]: The New Millennium Experience Company considers that publication of details of indemnities are commercially in confidence. To reveal details would adversely affect the NMEC's ability to operate in an effective and commercial manner.
Janet Anderson: The New Millennium Experience Company (NMEC) will publish its Annual Report and Financial Statement before the start of Parliamentary recess. Copies of the Report will be placed in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland on how many occasions since 31 March 1999 (a) departmental and (b) non-departmental special advisers have travelled abroad in an official capacity. 
Ms Quin [holding answer 6 July 2000]: In the "Action Plan for Farming", £26 million was allocated to the Pig Industry Restructuring Scheme (PIRS) in its first year. As the outgoers element of the PIRS will operate using a sealed bid system, it is not possible to estimate how much of this initial £26 million will be used on this part of the scheme. However, the aim of using a sealed bid system is to obtain the best value for money, with the expectation that a good proportion of the £26 million, plus the additional funds for which bids have been made, can be available for the ongoers element.
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Mr. Ben Chapman: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many agencies of her Department use touch tone telephone steering systems when dealing with telephone inquiries from the general public. 
Mr. Ian McCartney: The Government Car and Despatch Agency, which is the only agency of the Cabinet Office, does not normally deal with members of the general public and does not use touch tone telephone steering systems for inquiries.
The Central Office of Information is a department and executive agency that reports to the Minister for the Cabinet Office. It does not itself employ touch tone telephone steering systems when dealing with inquiries that it receives directly from the general public. However, as part of its Direct Marketing services it does contract, on behalf of its government clients, response houses and contact centres that do use touch tone telephone steering systems as a backup to live handling of calls.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, pursuant to her answer of 12 May 2000, Official Report, column 486W, on ministerial red boxes, on what occasions she has left her ministerial red box unattended on public transport. 
Mr. Ben Chapman: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) how many of his Department's telephone lines used by the general public are responded to by touch tone telephone steering systems; 
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Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what income support benefits are available to British pensioners living in other EU countries other than basic state pension and disability benefits. 
Angela Eagle: Most of the contributory benefits, with the exception of contribution-based Jobseeker's Allowance are available to pensioners living in other EU countries. However, it is a condition of entitlement to the income related benefits (Income Support, income-based Jobseeker's Allowance, Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit) that a person is resident in Great Britain.
Mr. Robathan: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) on how many occasions since May 1997 Ministers in his Department have made a declaration of interest to their colleagues under circumstances envisaged in Paragraph 110 of the Ministerial Code; 
Dr. Iddon: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what plans he has to amend the period of time during which Housing Benefit claimants may appeal against their benefit decision; and if he will make a statement. 
Angela Eagle: As part of our proposals to bring Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit decisions within the scope of the Appeals Service from 1 April 2001 we intend to introduce regulations to mirror the decision- making arrangements for other social security benefits.
This will mean that Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit claimants will be given a calendar month to dispute a decision. This period may be extended for up to a maximum of 13 months where there are special reasons for delay.
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Angela Eagle: We propose to introduce regulations to align the current Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit backdating rules with those for the other income- related benefits from April 2001. This will involve replacing the current 52 week limit which rests on a broad definition of "good cause". Instead, where a claimant delays his claim, that claim can be backdated for up to three months based on a set of prescriptive circumstances.
The Social Security Advisory Committee are currently consulting on the draft regulations and will report to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State in due course. We also propose to open consultation with the local authority associations this week.
Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what estimates he has made of savings in Housing Benefit arising from reduced house repossessions if a flat rate housing allowance were introduced at (a) £10, (b) £15, (c) £20, (d) £25 and (e) £30 per week and paid to all households in receipt of Working Families Tax Credit and Disabled Persons Tax Credit. 
Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what he estimates to be the gross cost to public funds of a flat rate housing allowance payable to recipients of working families tax credit and disabled persons tax credit, if such an allowance was paid at the rate of (a) £10 per week, (b) £15 per week, (c) £20 per week, (d) £25 per week and (e) £30 per week. 
Angela Eagle: Precise estimates cannot be made because of the uncertain behavioural effects that would result from the introduction of such an allowance. If a flat rate housing allowance of £30 per week were introduced for all recipients of the tax credits, it is estimated that the gross cost would be of the order of £2 billion per year.
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