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Dan Norris: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he made available draft guidance on Part II of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Bill concerning the protection of children. 
Mr. Boateng: Draft copies of the guidance for Part II of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Bill concerning the Protection of Children were placed in the Library of the House on Monday 2 October 2000.
This is a preliminary draft of non-statutory guidance intended for those organisations that will be involved in implementing the scheme. We are seeking comments on it from a range of those organisations. It has been made available to provide an indication of how the scheme might work in practice, and to inform debate on this subject.
Mr. Ivan Henderson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he will publish the first annual report on progress on his race equality employment targets for minority ethnic staff in his Department and its service areas. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: I will, tomorrow, publish the document "Race Equality--The Home Secretary's Employment Targets--The First Annual Report on Progress". This report covers progress on recruitment, retention and career progression targets for minority ethnic staff in the Home Office, the prison, the police, the fire and probation services. A copy of the report will also be placed in the Library.
Mr. Ivan Henderson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if permitted hours of opening for licensed premises and registered members' clubs in England and Wales will be extended on 31 December; and if he will make a statement. 
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Mr. Mike O'Brien: New Year's Eve is regarded as a special occasion and licensing justices and the magistrates' courts may, on receipt of application, grant special orders of exemption under the Licensing Act 1964, allowing licensed premises and registered members' clubs to remain open beyond the normal permitted hours. There is no limit on the extension which may be granted. This has been the practice on every New Year's Eve in the years before the Millennium. All licensees and registered members' clubs wishing to apply for extensions should do so as soon as possible.
This year 31 December falls on a Sunday. Permitted hours for pubs, nightclubs, restaurants and registered members' clubs in England and Wales on a Sunday normally end at 10.30 pm. The Magistrates' Association and the Justices' Clerks' Society have jointly issued guidance to the licensing justices and magistrates' courts suggesting that an extension to 12.30 am on New Year's Day morning would normally be appropriate. Magistrates will be able to determine what is appropriate for their local area and may determine a later time. Where extensions are granted, this will help people to enjoy a festive New Year as they have done in the past under similar procedures.
Because of the unique nature of last year's Millennium celebrations, permitted hours were extended nationally by amending the Licensing Act 1964 using a deregulation order, approved by Parliament, which came into force in July 1999. The Government had originally proposed applying this arrangement to all future New Year's Eves, but limited it to Millennium Eve after concerns expressed by the House of Lords Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee. The Millennium arrangements worked well; and the Government wanted to make a further deregulation order for this New Year's Eve, to provide a more typical test of the national extension. But in March the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee said in its Ninth Report (1999-2000 Parliamentary session, 15 March 2000) that they would be highly unlikely to support any further licensing deregulation ahead of general licensing reform. To bring an appropriate deregulation order into force before next New Year's Eve, under the timescales dictated by the Deregulation and Contracting Out Act 1994 for mandatory public consultation and parliamentary scrutiny, would have required the Government to initiate the process by the end of March. In July, the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee agreed to give consideration to a further proposal in respect of New Year's Eve. By then it was too late, consistent with the requirements of the 1994 Act, to bring forward a similar order which could come into effect for this New Year's Eve. In reply to a question from my hon. Friend the Member for Burnley (Mr. Pike) on 20 July 2000, Official Report, column 329W, I made it clear that the timescales for statutory public consultation and the subsequent parliamentary process were dictated by the 1994 Act, and it was now unlikely that the process could be completed in time for next New Year. We examined whether, with the co-operation of the Delegated Powers and Deregulation Committee and colleagues in both Houses, it was possible to obtain an Order in shorter time than that initially envisaged. We concluded that if we had done so it would have been open to legal challenge with an uncertain outcome. We have therefore decided against taking that course. We intend, however, to prepare such an order to
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apply to New Year's Eve next year, which will then provide a further test of the success of a standard national exemption.
We remain wholly committed to the general reform of licensing law as described in the White Paper "Time for Reform", published in April this year, which would include provision for the Secretary of State to set appropriate opening times nationally for licensed premises for any special national celebrations.
Mr. Darvill: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he received the report from John Rowe QC on the operation of those provisions of the Criminal Justice (Terrorism and Conspiracy) Act 1998 which are not already included in the existing review of anti-terrorism legislation. 
Mr. Straw: Mr. Rowe has completed his investigations into the operation of the relevant provisions of the Act and communicated his findings to me on 29 August. He has found that sections 5, 6 and 7 of the Act have not yet been used.
Mr. Charles Clarke: Details of reported crime are not available. Information on the numbers of crimes recorded by the police in the Taunton Deane local authority area has been provided by the Avon and Somerset Constabulary. The figures cover the 1993-94 financial year onwards. I understand that information for earlier years is not available.
(3) New counting rules
Available information held centrally on the Home Office Court Proceedings Database, showing the number of offenders convicted of indictable offences at Taunton Deane Petty Sessional Division, are as follows:
(4) Includes those found guilty at the Crown Court where the committing Petty Sessional Division was Taunton Deane
Due to disproportionate cost, selected years only are given
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Mr. Winnick: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received over the proposed sum to be paid by those who will wish to lodge an appeal against the refusal of a visitor's entry certificate. 
This summer, we consulted 36 organisations and individuals on the terms of the Immigration Appeals (Family Visitor) Regulations. Six of the 10 respondents asked us to reconsider the charges. In partnership with the Lord Chancellor's Department, we addressed these concerns by reviewing the estimated costs of these appeals and reducing both fees, in the case of a disposal on the papers by nearly 50 per cent.
Mr. Winnick: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will consult further over the amount to be paid by those who will wish to lodge an appeal against the refusal of a visitor's entry certificate. 
Following consultation on the proposed Immigration Appeals (Family Visitor) Regulations, we reduced the fee for appealing. The reduction was nearly 50 per cent. in the case of paper disposals, which we expect to form the majority of cases. We will need to assess how the current arrangements are working before we consider changing them again.
Miss Widdecombe: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will place the responses to the consultation document Refusal of Entry to the United Kingdom on Grounds of Criminal Conviction in the Library; what action he plans to take to amend the relevant immigration rules in the light of the consultations; and if he will make a statement. 
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