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Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what guidance the Port of London Authority issues to organisations facilitating canoeing on the River Thames; and who is the member of staff in the Authority responsible for non-powered craft using the River Thames. 
Mr. Jamieson: I understand that the Port of London Authority publishes a number of brochures and notices to inform commercial and recreational users of the river Thames on matters that the PLA considers important for the general safety and well being of users of the tidal river Thames. An expanded website that will include this and other relevant information is in the process of being developed for promulgation in the New Year.
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The navigational byelaws are enforced for all the tideway users and no particular member of staff is charged with the responsibility for non-powered craft. The Harbour Master in the upper district and the lower district is warranted to uphold the regulations within the byelaws as appropriate.
Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what action the Port of London Authority is taking to encourage watersports on the River Thames; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: I understand that the Port of London Authority (PLA) is a member of the organising committees of the Thames Festival, Thames Traditional Rowing Association and the Boat Race; it is also a Thames Watermen's Cutter owner, providing its cutter for use by local youth groups in the Royal Victoria Dock under the auspices of the London borough of Newham recreation department and entering it for various cutter races.
The Port of London Authority also manages the navigational control of all of the river events and regattas in the calendar held between Gravesend and Teddington, numbering some 300 events annually. These include the Varsity Boat Race, the Heads of the River Races, the various Thames Watermen's Cutter races, the Transport on Water Barge Driving Race, Doggett's Coat and Badge Wager and the Great River Race, which takes place in September each year.
Mr. Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what advice is issued to local authorities in respect of adjudicating on planning applications in cases where different planning policy guidance notes appear to imply contradictory verdicts on a given application; and if it is his policy that some PPGs have higher priority than others. 
Ms Keeble: All planning applications must be determined in accordance with the development plan for the area unless material considerations indicate otherwise. Local planning authorities must take account of national policy, set out in Planning Policy Guidance notes (PPGs), in preparing their development plans. PPGs may also be material to decisions on individual planning applications.
General advice to local planning authorities on material considerations is given in PPG1 'General Policy and Principles'. In the first instance it is for authorities, as decision-makers, to decide what considerations are material in any particular case and what weight to put on them. Ultimately, these are matters for the Courts.
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Mr. Luff: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to introduce legislation to give effect to the report of the Park Homes Working Party; and if he will make a statement. 
Ms Keeble: The report of the Park Homes working party made recommendations for changes to the legislation relating to mobile homes. We have consulted on, and are considering, the Working Party's recommendations.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what his estimate is of the standard spending assessment for highways and transport per mile of (a) principal and (b) non-principal road in each county of England in each of the last three years. 
Dr. Whitehead [holding answer 18 October 2001]: A table showing the standard spending assessment for highway maintenance per mile of principal and non-principal road, in each shire county in England for each of the three years 19992000, 200001 and 200102 has been placed in the Library. The highway maintenance SSA is determined mainly by an authority's length of roads together with the average traffic flow for that authority.
It is not possible to provide a similar table for the other transport elements (concessionary fares and bus support outside London) included in the Environmental, Protective and Cultural Services block as these elements are not separately identifiable within this block.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what plans he has to improve the arrangements for declaration of interests on local authorities with specific reference to the planning process. 
Ms Keeble [holding answer 19 October 2001]: The new national Model Code of Conduct will clarify existing arrangements for the declaration of a member's interests. It will apply to all business conducted by members of local authorities, including planning, and is due to be laid before Parliament in the next few weeks.
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Mr. Salmond: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the Civil Aviation radar installations are in Scotland and which ones are controlled outwith Scotland; when control of the Civil Aviation radar installations moved from Scotland; where these installations are being controlled from; and what plans the (a) CAA and (b) NATS have to transfer control of other radar installations from Scotland. 
Mr. Jamieson [holding answer 19 October 2001]: National Air Traffic Services Ltd. (NATS), and not the Civil Aviation Authority, owns and controls the civil aviation en-route radar installations in Scotland. These are located at Aberdeen, Allenshill, Lowther Hill, Stornoway, Sumburgh and Tiree.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will make a statement on the management information systems used by "Foundations"; and when it is planned to be fully implemented. 
Ms Keeble: My Department contracted "Foundations", the national co-ordinating body for home improvement agencies, to develop a single management information system to assist the monitoring and benchmarking of agencies' performance. The system has now been fully implemented and, on 20 September, "Foundations" distributed performance data for the year ended 31 March 2001 to all grant-funded agencies and their sponsoring local authorities.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how he will ensure that sheltered accommodation tenants do not lose out financially when the care component is separated from a rent arrangement. 
Ms Keeble: We are committed to providing local authorities with sufficient resources in the new Supporting People grant to enable them to keep support charges levied on existing residents of sheltered housing at the same level in real terms across the transition to Supporting People in April 200304. Detailed policy proposals for long term charging and means-testing arrangements under Supporting People were published in a consultation document on 3 January 2001. A further paper, carrying forward work on this issue in the light of responses to the consultation, will be published shortly.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what account he has taken of the age profile and social grouping of areas as part of a mapping exercise in advance of the introduction of the Supporting People initiative. 
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Ms Keeble: All local authorities are currently mapping the existing supply of housing-related support in their area. This will provide the information to put in place contracts to continue existing services.
Local authorities will be asked to consider their strategic priorities for housing-related support in light of local needs, including age profile and social grouping. This will be presented as a local Shadow Supporting People Strategy in September 2002.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what action he has taken to ensure in advance of the introduction of the Supporting People initiatives that existing standards of provision and care will be maintained. 
Ms Keeble: Supporting People will introduce consistent quality standards across the housing-related support sector. All providers of services funded by Supporting People grant will report regularly on key performance indicators, and the quality and appropriateness of the service being provided will be thoroughly evaluated at the contract review.
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