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Mr. Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will increase East Sussex Fire Brigade's SSA budget in 2002 in order to help meet the demands placed on the brigade as a result of last year's flooding. 
6 Dec 2001 : Column: 438W
Dr. Whitehead: Under the provisional local government finance settlement announced on 4 December, the fire standard spending assessment for the constituent local authorities of East Sussex Fire Authority will be increased by 4 per cent. from £21.646 million to £22.503 million for 200203. The figure has been calculated using the funding distribution formula that applies in respect of all fire authorities in England.
David Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how many private homes were sold in each of the last five years, broken down by region. 
Ms Keeble: According to HM Land Registry, the number of private homes sold in each of the last five years was as follows:
|Yorkshire and the Humber||81,043||92,959||90,794||100,401||102,377|
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list the elements of the £3.5 billion needed by Railtrack plc in administration, including that sum which was due to be paid to the company by the Government over that period under previous agreements. 
Mr. Byers: The sum of £3.5 billion is the Administrator's current estimate of the maximum that would probably be required to meet pre-administration debts to 31 March 2002, including allowances for contingencies.
The figures are made up as follows:
|Pre-administration trade creditors||1,673,498|
|Finance parties principal, interest and lease payments||624,084|
|Estimated value of subsidiary companies||31,500|
|Provision for utility companies||79,000|
|Losses on close-out of interest rates SWAPS||118,000|
|Purchase of Rail Grinding train||5,000|
|Maximum total estimated funding required to 31 March 2002||3,571,082|
The Government have paid Railtrack all the moneys that were legally due to the company, and these are being used to meet day-to-day running costs.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list (a) track, (b) signals and (c) other infrastructure, operated as part of the London Underground, which is (i) owned by Railtrack and (ii) used by mainline train operating companies; and if he will place in the Library (A) contract and (B) other documentation associated with the use and maintenance of such infrastructure. 
Mr. Byers [holding answer 4 December 2001]: This is a matter for Railtrack and London Underground. All track, station and other infrastructure related agreements are commercially confidential between the parties and it would therefore be inappropriate to place them in the Library.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions when the supplementary note to the original notes of his meeting with John Robinson, as sent to the Transport Sub- Committee, was drafted. 
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions on what date the supplementary note to the official minute of his meeting with the chairman of Railtrack on 25 July was (a) drafted, (b) circulated for comments and (c) agreed by him. 
Mr. Byers: The information requested is exempt from disclosure under Section 2 of Part II of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions which (a) officials and (b) special advisers in his Department were consulted
6 Dec 2001 : Column: 439W
on the content of the supplementary note to the official minute of his meeting with the Chairman of Railtrack on 25 July. 
Mr. Byers [holding answer 4 December 2001]: The information requested is exempt from disclosure under Section 2 of Part II of the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.
Mr. Edwards: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the criteria are for paying fuel duty rebate to bus operators providing scheduled services; and in what circumstances it can be withheld. 
Ms Keeble: To be eligible for the receipt of this rebate a bus service must be registered with the Traffic Commissioner as a local service. It must also meet a number of other strict criteria to ensure that it is a service available to the general public and that it stops at registered stopping places.
The payment of rebate can be withheld if there is doubt that these conditions have been met or about the amount of entitlement. Examples of the latter are where an operator's estimates of FDR eligible mileage or fuel consumption appear unreasonably high in view of the operator's performance in recent years, where an operator consistently over estimates, where an operator fails to submit a certified claim form within the time allowed and if an operator fails to maintain adequate daily records of mileage run and fuel consumption.
Mr. Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what recent infrastructure analysis has taken place of (a) general practitioners, (b) police, (c) school places and (d) public transport on the Isle of Sheppey with regard to new build housing schemes. 
Ms Keeble: The assessment of the need for local facilities is a matter for the local planning authority and the service providers. The Government's policies in Planning Policy Guidance note 3: Housing seek to create a more sustainable pattern of housing development and deliver accessibility to transport, health, education and other facilities. It is for the county and district councils to consider these issues and work with service providers when drawing up the development plan. The availability of services should also be taken into account when considering individual proposals for housing schemes.
The Government have already announced the new bridge across the Swale making the Isle of Sheppey more accessible. We are also investing £5 million, through the Sure Start scheme, to help children in two of the most deprived areas on the Island.
Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what steps the Government have taken to reduce the delays in planning decisions concerning on-shore windfarms. 
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Ms Keeble: I refer my hon. Friend to the reply I gave her on 21 November 2001, Official Report, columns 285W-86W.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions, pursuant to his answers of 29 October 2001, Official Report, column 479W on housing, and of 13 November 2001, Official Report, column 611W, on affordable housing, on what basis he stated that Chorley borough council considered Eaves Green unsuitable for affordable housing. 
Ms Keeble [holding answer 4 December 2001]: This information was based on Chorley borough council's local plan, review (revised deposit edition, September 2000). Under policy HS5 this edition considered sites suitable for affordable housing. The Eaves Green site was excluded.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions for what reasons the SRA have stopped publishing punctuality figures for track lines. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) continue to publish detailed public performance measurement data quarterly; in their twice-yearly "OnTrack" publication, and on two other occasions to coincide with their quarterly "National Rail Trends" publication.
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