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Mr. McNulty: The Department is currently drawing up, in partnership with representatives of the mobile phone operators and local government, a revised Code of Best Practice on Telecommunications, which will include further advice and best practice on the delivery of telecommunications development.
Mr. Cousins: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the housing capital debt attributable to the housing revenue account of the City of Newcastle-upon-Tyne is (a) in total and (b) per dwelling chargeable to the housing revenue account. 
Mr. Raynsford: In financial year 200001, the latest year for which audited accounts are available, Newcastle- upon-Tyne city council recorded a capital housing debt attributable to the housing revenue account of (a) £290,242,342 in total and (b) £7,927 per dwelling.
(3) how many people were accepted for employment with the Fire Service since 1997, broken down by (a) gender and (b) ethnic origin. 
Mr. Raynsford: Tables showing the number of people accepted for, and leaving, employment within the Fire Service for 199899 to 200001 follow. Information for 199697 and 199798 is not available. Information on the average years of service for those leaving the service since 1997 is not held centrally.
For 200001, wholetime date are not available for three brigades and retained data for one brigade.
19 Jun 2002 : Column 417W
For 200001 wholetime data are not available for three brigades and retained data for one brigade. In the same year, six applicants were of undetermined ethnic origin, two wholetime and four retained.
For 200001 wholetime data are not available for two brigades and retained data for one brigade.
19 Jun 2002 : Column 418W
For 200001 wholetime data are not available for two brigades and retained data for one brigade. One wholetime leaver was of undetermined ethnic origin.
|Compulsory/voluntary age retirement||449||530||497||195||178||190|
|Dismissal on disciplinary grounds||17||10||5||7||3||7|
For 200001 wholetime date are not available for two brigades and retained for one brigade.
Ian Stewart: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what steps he is taking to encourage local authorities to work together in partnership to meet the Government's target for all services to be electronically enabled by 2005. 
Mr. Raynsford: We are keen to promote and support local authorities in developing local partnerships with each other, and across the public sector. Such partnerships will be crucial in building services around the needs of citizens and customers, and in realising the economies of scale in terms of the investment requirement to see the objectives of e-government realised.
As part of our commitment to spend £350 million over three years to support local government online, we have made provision for £75 million over the next two years to support the development of e-government partnerships. From this amount we intend to provide some £47 million over the next two years to 64 local partnerships that submitted proposals to my Department. Details of the individual allocations will be placed in the Library.
We will also provide a £2 million programme of practical support over the next two years, to ensure that these partnerships are successful in achieving their aims and that the lesson learned from them are disseminated.
Mr. Raynsford: The Government's proposals for the sustainable development role of elected assemblies in the English regions are set out in chapter 4 of the White Paper "Your Region, Your Choice" (Cm 5511), which was published on 9 May. An assembly's overarching strategy will act as the sustainable development framework for the region.
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Mr. Quentin Davies: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will state the assumptions on which his estimate of the population of South Kesteven for RSG and standard spending assessment purposes is based. 
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) pursuant to her statement of 7 May, Official Report, column 44, if she will make a statement on the discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland about the broadcasting obligations in the Belfast Agreement; 
Tessa Jowell [holding answer 13 May 2002]: The Belfast Agreement commits the British Government to explore the scope for achieving more widespread availability of Teilifis na Gaelige in Northern Ireland. Discussions with the broadcasting authorities and with the Northern Ireland Office continue, and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland and I will make an announcement in due course, when those discussions are completed.
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