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Ministerial Duties

David Maclean: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if she will list for each

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week from Monday 23 July to Monday 8 October which departmental Ministers will be on duty (a) in the United Kingdom and (b) in London. [4903]

Ms Rosie Winterton: A Minister in the Lord Chancellor's Department will be on duty throughout the parliamentary summer recess, in line with paragraph 68 of the current Ministerial Code.

Departmental Events

David Maclean: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what (a) national and (b) international awareness events the Lord Chancellor's Department has participated in since June 1997 in the form of (i) sponsorship, (ii) departmental attendance, (iii) similar departmental activities and (iv) a message of support. [5042]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The information requested by the right hon. Gentleman could be provided only at disproportionate cost. If he requires specific information relating to a particular event I would be happy to assist if he could write to me.

Juries

Harry Cohen: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what guidance he has issued on the composition of juries in areas with high proportions of ethnic minorities; and if he will make a statement. [5650]

Mr. Wills: There is no guidance on the composition of juries in areas with high proportions of ethnic minorities. Jury service is governed by the principle of random selection, subject to the law on disqualified and ineligible jurors. Under the Juries Act 1974, jurors are chosen at random from the electoral register.

Religious Discrimination

Paul Flynn: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department what progress he has made in reviewing changes to anti-Catholic terms contained in the Act of Settlement 1701 and the Bill of Rights 1688. [5890]

Mr. Wills: The Government have always stood firm against discrimination in all its forms, including discrimination against Roman Catholics, and will continue to do so. We have a heavy legislative programme and no immediate plans to legislate in this area, but we are monitoring the debate and shall be considering this matter further.

Queen's Golden Jubilee

David Wright: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when the competitions for civic honours to mark the Queen's Golden Jubilee will be launched; and if she will make a statement. [6533]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The competitions for grants of city status to one town in each of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and for a Lord Mayoralty, will be launched next Wednesday, 25 July, by means of press notices. Letters will be posted on 24 July to the towns and cities known to be interested in applying for these honours. Both the letters and the press notices will provide some guidance on the main factors that will be

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taken into account in identifying the successful towns and city. The honours will, however, continue to be rare marks of distinction conferred, on Ministerial advice, under the Royal Prerogative, rather than rights to be earned by the meeting of specific criteria.

Applications submitted for the grant of city status to mark the Millennium will be reconsidered if the local authorities so wish, with or without additional material. The closing date for the submission of applications and any fresh material will be 12 October 2001. The Government hope to announce the results of the competitions in the early months of 2002.

Advisory Board on Family Law

Dr. Desmond Turner: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when she will publish the Fourth Annual Report of the Lord Chancellor's Advisory Board on Family Law. [6535]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Advisory Board on Family Law has today published its Fourth Annual Report and copies have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Tribunals

Mrs. Fitzsimons: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department when she will publish the report of Sir Andrew Leggatt's review of tribunals. [6534]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Sir Andrew Leggatt sent his report to the Lord Chancellor on 31 March 2001. The Government intend to publish the report shortly, together with a consultation paper seeking views on its principal recommendations. Copies of both documents will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Property Rights

Mr. Drew: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department if she will introduce legislation so that greater protection is given to unmarried partners following the break-up of a relationship and in particular so that they have additional rights in the apportioning of property if that person's name is not formally registered in joint ownership of that property. [5562]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Government have no current plans to legislate in this area. However, the Law Commission is currently reviewing the law as it relates to the property rights of people who share homes. This covers a wide category of person including all those who live in the same household other than by reason of one of them being the other's employee, tenant, lodger or boarder. It is expected that the Law Commission will be in a position to publish a consultation paper in the spring of 2002. The Government will of course be interested in the Law Commission's proposals, and in the response to them.

DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER

Local Government

Mr. Gummer: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if his plans for further powers for regional Government in England will entail other changes to the local government structure. [4122]

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Mr. Raynsford: I have been asked to reply.

As my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister announced on 2 July 2001, Official Report, column 80W, the Government intend to publish a White Paper on regional governance in England. This will set out the Government's thinking on these issues.

No decisions have yet been taken on what—if any—changes in local government structure might be involved in taking forward the Government's proposals in relation to elected regional assemblies.

Mr. Gummer: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what plans he has for reforming local government. [4120]

Mr. Raynsford: I have been asked to reply.

The White Paper "Modern Local Government: In Touch with the People", published in 1998, set out a 10-year programme for the reform and modernisation of local government in England so that councils everywhere can be effective leaders of their communities and can deliver the highest quality local services. We have already made considerable progress through the introduction of best value, local public service agreements (LPSAs), new political management structures and a new ethical framework for local government.

We are now building on these achievements, easing the burden of regulation on councils, reforming the local government finance regime and developing our commitment to give freedoms and flexibilities to high performing councils. We intend during the autumn to publish a new White Paper setting out an up-to-date picture of our plans.

Ministerial Duties

David Maclean: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will list for each week from Monday 23 July to Monday 8 October which departmental ministers will be on duty (a) in the United Kingdom and (b) in London. [4905]

The Deputy Prime Minister: It is not normal practice of Government to publish the daily ministerial duty roster. This Department will ensure that it has sufficient cover through the summer recess in line with the requirements of the Ministerial Code.

Work Permits

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what representations were made, and when, to Government Departments on behalf of the Trinidad and Tobago Football Authority regarding the applications for work permits by Mr. Hector Sam and Mr. Carlos Edwards. [2089]

Mr. Leslie: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, my hon. Friend the Member for Wallasey (Angela Eagle), on 27 June 2001, Official Report, column 97W.

Departmental Units

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will list the cross-departmental and other units run from within his Department, listing in each case (a) the reports

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which they have published to date and (b) the topics on which they are engaged; and if he will make a statement. [2678]

Mr. Leslie: I shall write to the hon. Member with a full answer as soon as the information is available, and place a copy in the Libraries of the House.

Green Ministers

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1) if he will set out the terms of reference for the role of the Green Minister in his Department; and if he will make a statement; [4821]

Mr. Leslie: I refer the hon. Member to the answers given to him by my right hon. Friend the Minister for the Environment on 13 July 2001, Official Report, columns 689–90W.

Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister on what dates his Department's Green Minister attended meetings of the Green Ministers' Committee during the current Session of Parliament; on what dates subsequent meetings are planned to take place; and if he will make a statement. [4820]

Mr. Leslie: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Minister for the Environment on 17 July 2001, Official Report, column 165W.


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