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Mr. Denham: I announced the police funding settlement for 200203 on 30 January. Through the settlement West Mercia will receive grant of £101.3 million, an increase of 2.3 per cent. over this year. The average increase for English shire authorities is 2.5 per cent.
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Grant for police authorities is mainly determined by the police funding formula. The formula aims to allocate resources fairly between authorities, taking account of the circumstances of each. The formula has many strengths and is generally acceptable to much of the policing community. It does however have well recognised limitations and we have decided to undertake a wide ranging review of the formula to ensure that it satisfactorily allocates funding in future. I intend that, where possible, changes to the formula should be introduced in time for the 200304 police funding settlement.
Angela Eagle [holding answer 14 February 2002]: We have no record of having issued a British passport to any current members of the Zimbabwe cabinet. Eligibility for British passport facilities depends on the application of the terms of the British Nationality Act 1981 to the facts of a person's birth and descent. This information in respect of members of the Zimbabwe Government and their families is not held by the Passport Service. I understand that Zimbabwean nationality law now prohibits dual nationality and that in order to retain Zimbabwean nationality, Zimbabweans were required by January this year to renounce formally any other nationality they held.
Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) if he will make a statement on the level of the Cheshire Police Authority's grant within the 200203 provisional settlement; and what (a) representations he has received and (b) assessment he has made of the implications of the level of grant increase for (i) the effective policing of Cheshire and (ii) the future level of council tax to be levied in Cheshire; 
I announced the final police funding settlement for 200203 on 30 January. Through the settlement Cheshire will receive grant (Home Office and the Department for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (DTLR) grant) of £99 million. This is an increase of £2.4 million
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or 2.5 per cent. over 200102. In addition Cheshire will receive £3.3 million through the Crime Fighting Fund, £0.2 million through the Rural Policing Fund and £2.7 million capital allocation.
Mr. Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the level of increase in grant settlement necessary for police authorities to cover police service personnel pay and pensions; and if he will make a statement. 
|Year||Number of officers(87)||Number of civilian support staff(87)|
|31 March 1997||6,592||2,455|
|31 March 1998||6,617||2,429|
|31 March 1999||6,646||2,559|
|31 March 2000||6,632||2,457|
|31 March 2001||6,873||2,706|
|30 September 2001||7,134||2,829|
(87) Strength is full-time equivalents.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much is expected to be recovered by the confiscation of assets of drug traffickers in each of the next five years; and if he will estimate the percentage that this will represent of the total value of illegal drug sales. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The national Asset Recovery Strategy, which I announced on 28 November, sets out the Government's objectives for meeting the challenging financial investigation target of recovering £60 million in receipts from asset recovery orders of all kinds by the 200405 financial year, compared with £29.5 million during 19992000. This would achieve the Government's objective of doubling the amounts recovered from drug traffickers and other major criminals. We estimate that between a half and two thirds of these receipts will come from drug trafficking cases.
It is not possible to provide a meaningful estimate of the percentage these receipts will represent of the total value of illegal drug sales. What I can say is that the value of such sales is very much greater even than the increased receipts set out in the current target, but that effective
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application of the new powers in the Proceeds of Crime Bill, including those that will be exercised by the proposed new Assets Recovery Agency, should enable a major increase in the recovery of drug trafficking proceeds. Targets in this field will be reviewed when the strategy has operated for a year, in the light of the outcome of the Bill's passage.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the cost was of setting up the unit for confiscation of the proceeds of drug trafficking; and what the anticipated annual cost is of running it. 
Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The Proceeds of Crime Bill, which is shortly to have its Report and Third Reading Stages in the House of Commons, provides inter alia for the setting up of an Assets Recovery Agency. The agency will be empowered to apply for confiscation orders in relation to any category of crime, including drug trafficking.
As I explained in my answer to the hon. Member for Poole (Mr. Syms) on 11 December 2000, Official Report, column 837W. It is currently estimated that the agency will cost £3 million to set up, with running costs of some £13 million per annum. These estimates are subject to revision as planning for the agency progresses.
Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many secure unit places for juvenile offenders in (a) young offender institutions, (b) local authority secure units and (c) secure training centres there are in (i) England and Wales and (ii) Greater London; what the occupancy rates are for each; and if he will make a statement. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 14 February 2002]: The Youth Justice Board for England and Wales commissions and purchases secure accommodation for remanded and sentenced young people. They have provided the following information. The table details the number of secure juvenile places within England and Wales and Greater London and the occupancy rates on Thursday 31 January 2002.
|Type of secure accommodation||Number of places||Percentage occupied|
|England and Wales|
|Young offender institution||3,072||84|
|Local authority secure unit||256||95|
|Secure training centre||130||85|
|Young offender institution||240||93|
|Local authority secure unit||16||100|
|Secure training centre||0|||
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Mr. Denham: The suite of documents which comprise the Terrestrial Trunked Radio System (TETRA) standard specification is published by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI), based in Sophia Antipolis, France. The suite currently contains over 200 separate items and the documents may be downloaded from the ETSI internet website www.etsi.org. These documents are updated as the standard evolves and this method of access ensures that the latest version is always available for consultation. Alternatively, the documents may also be accessed via the library of the British Standards Institute, 389 Chiswick High Road, London W4 4AL Tel: +44 (0) 20 8996 7004, Fax: +44 (0) 20 8996 7005.
Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what plans he has to commission further investigations into possible health risks associated with the use of the TETRA communications system by the emergency services. 
Mr. Denham: In early 2001, the Home Office commissioned a report from the National Radiological Protection Board on the potential health risks from Terrestrial Trunked Radio System (TETRA) technology.
The report concluded it was unlikely that the special features of TETRA posed a hazard to health and made recommendations for further research in the remaining areas of uncertainty. The Home Office has accepted the report and is taking forward all its recommendations in a comprehensive programme of work which is already well under way. This includes a large study commissioned by the Home Office from the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory on the possible effects of TETRA signals on cell biology. The initial results of this work are expected by April, 2002.
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Scotland. However, outline planning studies estimate that 3,500 masts will be needed to meet the police requirement for Airwave.
Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what recent representations he has received from scientific (a) organisations, (b) journals and (c) institutions expressing concerns over the possible health risks of the TETRA communications system; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Denham: No representations have been received to date from the scientific community, or the scientific press, concerning the possible health risks of Terrestrial Trunked Radio System communications systems (TETRA).
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