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Housing (Supporting People Grant)

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list the funding streams that are being consolidated into the supporting people grant. [40213]

Ms Keeble: Supporting People will consolidate the following Funding Streams:

SHMG (Supported Housing Management Grant from the Housing Corporation). This is a revenue grant which is paid to RSLs (registered social landlords) to fund the

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cost of support services. Only RSLs can receive this grant as the Housing Corporation only funds RSLs. It is a block grant, which is paid quarterly in advance.

THBS (Transitional Housing Benefit System) this is an individual welfare benefit. It is paid as part of an individuals Housing Benefit entitlement to cover the cost of housing support. It was introduced in April 2000 as a means of identifying the amount of Housing Benefit paid for support, prior to transfer to the Supporting People pot. Providers must separate out the cost of support services that was previously just charged as part of the rent. From April 2003 support costs will be ineligible for housing benefit and transitional housing benefit will be transferred to the Supporting People pot.

PAGS (Probation Accommodation Grants) this is a grant paid by the probation service for housing service for offenders. Each local probation service has a number of contracts with providers. The contract value will transfer to the pot. Until recently, part of the PAGs funding came from local authorities, this is no longer the case.

HIA (Home Improvement Agencies) funding this is paid by the DTLR to local authorities to fund the cost of home improvement agency services. It has to be match funded by the authority. Continuing the local authority match funding for the life of the existing funding period will be a condition of the Supporting People grant paid to the authority by DTLR.

Income support—this welfare benefit is paid to owner occupiers. It is used to fund housing support services in the leasehold sheltered sector. This will not be a big element of the pot but we are not sure yet of the precise size. We are working with DWP and the Benefits Agency on how to identify the recipients and costs.

Funding from sources other than those listed above will not transfer to the Supporting People pot. We expect that there will continue to be a range of funding sources for housing related support. Authorities will be expected to establish all funding paid for services to ensure that they understand the full picture.

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what additional funds his Department has provided to local authorities and other agencies to fund the one-off transition costs to the supporting people framework. [40214]

Ms Keeble: The Government have allocated £40 million to local authorities to fund the implementation of the Supporting People programme in 2002–03. This is in addition to the £15.2 million allocated to local authorities in 2001–02. In addition, £3.5 million has been made available for provider organisations to help prepare for implementation.

Local Government Finance

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what estimate he has made of the total cost to local authorities of implementing Best Value in (a) monetary terms and (b) terms of officer hours. [40229]

Dr. Whitehead: No reliable estimates exist as to the costs incurred by local authorities in complying with their duty under the Local Government Act 1999, either in monetary or officer hour terms. Any such costs have to

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be set against the benefits of improved services. My Department has commissioned research from Cardiff Business School to consider both the costs and benefits of best value; their interim report is expected in April.

Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions (1) when he expects to provide updated guidelines to local authorities on future applications for e-Government support funding; and if he will make a statement; [40469]

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Dr. Whitehead: The Government have committed £350 over three years from 2001–02 to support local authorities making their services e-enabled. I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my right hon. Friend the Minister for Local Government on 17 December 2001, Official Report, column 25W, to my hon. Friend the Member for Ellesmere Port and Neston (Mr. Miller) on the funding that has been provided to date. We will announce detailed plans for the remainder of this funding with the publication of the draft National Strategy for consultation shortly.

There are no match funding requirements for the allocation of e-government money as such. However, we have always made clear that funding from Government to local authorities would only be a contribution to the overall costs.

Mr. Lammy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how much public money has been provided for the London borough of Haringey since 1997. [36970]

Dr. Whitehead: London borough of Haringey have reported the following public funding.

Revenue and capital grants paid to Haringey

Outturn Budget
Central Government funding
Revenue support grant137,723146,158146,206148,064157,404
Redistributed non-domestic rates46,57749,19554,22361,50960,645
SSA reduction grant0060100
Specific grants inside AEF(3)14,07922,12635,85661,24364,970
Revenue grants paid into GFRA(4)184,300195,353200,429209,573218,049
Capital grants(5)7,93911,09710,8437,2969,685
Public funding192,239206,450211,272216,869227,734

(3) Aggregate External Finance (AEF) is central Government support towards total standard spending. It comprises RSG, NNDR, and certain specific, supplementary and special grants. Specific grants inside AEF, reported asylum seekers grant increasing from £3.8 million in 1997–98 to £34.6 million in 2000–01. Haringey budgeted for £40 million asylum seekers grant in 2001–02.

(4) This includes all revenue grants paid into the General Fund Revenue Account (GFRA), but may exclude certain public funding, for example from some non-departmental public bodies, which is recorded as income and is not separately identifiable.

(5) Consists of central Government, non-departmental public bodies and National Lottery.


1. Revenue Summary and GFRA Budget Estimates return.

2. Capital Outturn returns and Capital estimate return.

Statutory Plans

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions if he will list the statutory plans that each local authority is required to produce. [40207]

Dr. Whitehead: The recent Local Government White Paper announced, as part of our commitment to decrease unnecessary bureaucracy, that we will reduce the number of plans local authorities are required to produce by one half. The research report published on 18 February 2002—"Review of Local Authority Statutory and Non-Statutory Service and Policy Planning Requirements"— will provide a vital steer in taking this forward.

Of the 66 plans reviewed within the report, 31 are statutory. The titles of these plans, and details of the Department/agency with responsibility for them, are as listed. Further details of the nature and purpose of each plan are set down within the research report.

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