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Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) how many applications were made for housing benefit exceptional hardship payments in each local authority area in England and Wales (a) in total and (b) from households with children; and, in each case, what proportion were accepted, in each of the last three years; 
Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many applications for exceptional hardship payments were made by households on income support or incapacity benefit; and, of these, how many were accepted, in each of the last three years. 
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Angela Eagle: There has been no specific study of local authority usage of Remote Access Terminals (RATs). However during the period April 1999 to March 2000 over three million enquiries were made via RATs. The first wave of the Department's Local Authority Omnibus Survey, published in April 2000, established that 80 per cent. of local authorities believed that RATs had made a positive contribution to the administration of Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit.
Mr. Chope: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what percentage of correctly presented bills were paid by his Department in (a) 1998-99 and (b) 1999-2000 within 30 days of receipt of (i) goods and services, (ii) a valid invoice and (iii) other agreed payment terms. 
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security if he will estimate the size of a money purchase pension fund required to purchase (a) a level and (b) an indexed annuity equivalent to the difference between the basic state pension and the minimum income guarantee for (i) a woman aged 60 years, (ii) a man aged 65 years and (iii) a married couple with a basic pension eligibility earned through a single partner. 
|Level annuity||Indexed annuity|
|Woman aged 60||7,600||11,100|
|Man aged 65||6,100||8,000|
|Married couple, both aged 65||9,000||12,500|
Figures rounded to the nearest £100.
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many staff have been transferred to the Inland Revenue as a result of the transfer of policy and other responsibility for (a) pension credits, (b) the state second pension, (c) stakeholder pensions, (d) pensions forecasting, (e) incapacity benefit changes and (f) bereavement benefit changes; and how many such staff remain working for his Department. 
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Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what clawback mechanisms exist under private finance initiative contracts within his Department in respect of contingencies other than refinancing; and if he will place copies of each private finance initiative contract in the Library. 
Mr. Rooker [holding answer 13 July 2000]: The PRIME (Private Sector Resource Initiative for Management of the Estate) contract has numerous clawback mechanisms where gains, profits and savings are shared between the Department and Trillium, the PRIME contractor.
The Department receives: one quarter of savings from the deferral or avoidance of maintenance over a three year period but does not share in higher than planned costs; half of the utility cost savings achieved against an annual target set by a joint Departmental/Trillium liaison committee; half the savings from contribution in lieu of rates (business rates from 1 April 2000) negotiated by Trillium and 90 per cent. in following years until a further saving is made, when the base CILOR year is reset; 20 per cent. of savings derived from changes in contractor's service methods; 50 per cent. of savings in landlord's service charges on rented properties; 50 per cent. of development proceeds from disposed properties, after deduction of a fixed developer's profit, costs and the value that Trillium had agreed for the property with the Department. The Department may seek to recover a share of any windfall gain arising during the first five years of the contract, after either a sale of the rights of more than half of the net cashflow of the project or the flotation of more than 25 per cent. of Trillium. The Department may also seek to recover a share of any windfall profits arising during the first five years of the contract, where the net cashflow to Trillium's owners exceeds a predetermined level compared with the original expectation.
Treasury Taskforce Policy Statement No. 5 (Provision of Information to Parliament) sets out best practice in relation to Departments' obligations to disclose information to Parliament. This approach has been agreed with the National Audit Office. The Department has not found it necessary to deposit additional information in the Library.
Mr. Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what the net present cost is of each project undertaken in his Department under the private finance initiative; what the value is of their public sector comparators in (a) pre-risk and (b) risk-adjusted terms; what risks have been identified as having been transferred; and if he will place information on other relevant costs for each private finance initiative project in the Library. 
Mr. Rooker [holding answer 13 July 2000]: The cost of the PRIME (Private Sector Resource Initiative for Management of the Estate) deal over the 20 year life of the contract is £2.008 billion (using the Government's real discount rate of 6 per cent.). This is £560 million less than the cost of continuing public sector provision. The bidding process established that the gap between the cost of the public sector comparator and the bids from all three consortia were such that the pricing of risk transfer was
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not a factor in demonstrating value for money to the taxpayer in this instance. Other relevant costs on PRIME may be found in the National Audit Office report "The PRIME Project: The Transfer of the Social Security estate to the private sector HC370 Session 1998-99" which was presented to the House of Commons and subsequently published on 23 April 1999. The NAO report also identified some 16 areas of risk as having been transferred to Trillium, the PRIME contractor.
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security how many claims for (a) Disability Living Allowance and (b) Attendance Allowance have been (i) refused and (ii) stopped because the claimant lives in a local authority owned or managed residential home in each year since 1997. 
Mr. Bayley: Withdrawal of benefit in these situations is based on the principle, established since the beginning of the Social Security system in 1948, that funding to meet a specific need should not be provided from more than one public source at the same time. These rules have applied to Attendance Allowance and Disability Living Allowance since the benefits were introduced.
Figures for homes owned or managed by local authorities are not available separately from homes funded generally by local authorities or the National Health Service. Such figures as are available for Disability Living Allowance are in the table. No equivalent figures are centrally available for Attendance Allowance, since this may be stopped by local offices where payment of Attendance Allowance is combined with other benefits, in particular Retirement Pension.
|Year||Benefit refused(1)||Benefit stopped(1)|
(1) Figures relate to DLA care component not payable because the claimant was in a residential care or nursing home, funded by either a local authority or the National Health Service, at the time they established entitlement to the benefit.
(1) Figures relate to cases where payment of DLA care component stopped because the claimant has spent more than 28 days in a residential care or nursing home funded by either a local authority or the National Health Service.
Figures relate to 30 November each year.
DSS Information Centre: 5 per cent. data. Figures rounded to nearest hundred.
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