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25. Mr. Brazier: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what changes in planning guidance and planning law he is planning with regard to land drainage; and if he will make a statement. 
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This PPG advises on the planning consideration of all aspects of land drainage and flood defence. It complements the flood defence policies of my right hon. Friend the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.
Mr. Raynsford: We have made available additional public investment and fiscal instruments to help increase the provision of affordable housing. In particular, we have almost doubled funding to the Housing Corporation through its approved development programme and have set up the Starter Homes Initiative. Furthermore, Regional Planning Guidance for the south-east (RPG9) sets out ways in which local authorities can identify and respond to local housing need.
Mr. Robert Ainsworth: As announced on 27 March 2001, the Government have selected the Airline Group as their strategic partner in the public-private partnership for National Air Traffic Services. Subject to certain conditions, including clearance under the European Commission Merger Regulation, our aim is for the Airline Group to take operational control of NATS on 1 June.
29. Mr. Ian Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what estimate he has made of the total value of the capital projects which have been funded by private finance arrangements since May 1997. 
Ms Armstrong: My Department has signed or provided financial support to private finance contracts with a capital value of £1,045 million since May 1997. In addition DETR has allocated PFI credits with a value of £1,112 million to 56 local authority PFI projects in this period.
30. Mr. Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what the estimated cost is to public funds of a road crash involving (a) a fatality, (b) serious injury and (c) slight injury. 
Mr. Hill: The values attributed in 1999 to the avoidance of road accidents are (a) fatal £1,089,130, (b) serious £146,890, and (c) slight £14,540. These amounts are the values to be used in cost benefit analysis. They take account of medical costs, lost production, human costs based on willingness to pay for reduction of risk, the costs of police and courts, insurance administration, and property damage. Included in these values are the sums of £5,970, £10,380, and £890 for fatal, serious and slight accidents respectively, for the cost to public funds for hospital and ambulance costs and the
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costs of police and courts. The lost production element includes social security costs but these are not separately estimated. Further information is available in Highways Economic Note No. 1 "1999 Valuation of the Benefits of Prevention of Road Accidents and Casualties" a copy of which is in the Library of the House.
Ms Armstrong: We believe that the council tax is working well as a local tax. In our Green Paper on modernising local government finance, which we published in September 2000, we explained that the banding system makes tax bills predictable and stable. A number of respondents to the Green Paper proposed that additional council tax bands should be created. We are considering what they had to say in the context of preparing a White Paper on local government finance, which we intend to publish later this year.
32. Mr. Derek Twigg: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on the resources allocated in 2001-02 for the maintenance of the Runcorn-Widnes bridge. 
Mr. Hill: I announced in November 2000 that as part of the local transport plan allocation for Halton borough council for 2001-02, £1 million is being made available towards maintenance of the Runcorn-Widnes bridge. Further funding will be provided during the period of the local transport plan to meet in full the maintenance scheme for this bridge.
33. Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions how much money was requested by the London borough of Southwark for housing capital works in the year 2001-02; and how much has been allocated. 
Mr. Robert Ainsworth: The london Borough of Southwark has been allocated £52,920,634 for housing in 2001-02 under the Housing Investment Programme and the Major Repairs Allowance. It is for the local authority to decide how this funding is prioritised. A further £1,225,554 housing capital funding has been allocated under SRB, through Peckham Partnership.
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make a statement on the line refurbishment works being undertaken by Railtrack and the Strategic Rail Authority. 
Mr. Hill: Railtrack has nearly completed its programme of replacement of rail and points in line with its national recovery plan. The company is separately taking forward a series of enhancement projects to increase the capacity of the network, including the west coast route modernisation. My right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister announced on 2 April that future major enhancement projects would be taken forward through public-private partnerships involving the Strategic Rail Authority and third parties.
38. Ms Atherton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on the regeneration projects funded by his Department in the Falmouth and Camborne constituency. 
Ms Beverley Hughes: The Department is contributing funds to a wide range of projects in the Falmouth and Camborne constituency. Camborne, Pool and Redruth is the South West Regional Development Agency's first priority area for regeneration in Cornwall. Current RDA commitments in the constituency total nearly £18 million of investment, including in a new Tolvadden Energy Park, in transformation of derelict buildings at West End Stores and Alma Place in Redruth into social housing and a new Cornish Studies Centre, and in the Falmouth Maritime project. My Department has awarded a total of £7.8 million in Single Regeneration Budget funding in Rounds 4 to 6 to schemes in west Cornwall that include the Falmouth and Camborne constituency. In October 2000, my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister announced that Kerrier District is one of four areas in the south-west that will benefit from the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund to help improve housing, raise school standards, reduce crime and improve health in our most deprived communities.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will make a statement on his plans to review the local government standard spending assessment formula. 
Ms Beverley Hughes: We received over 16,000 responses to last September's Green Paper on modernising local government finance. A White Paper setting out our decisions on the future of the revenue grant distribution system will be published later this year.
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