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25 Nov 2002 : Column 102Wcontinued
Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) how many murders in Leeds were committed by a person well known to the victim in the last five years; and what proportion of the total number of murders this represents; 
Hilary Benn: Details of homicides held centrally locate the offence by police force area only. The available information relates to currently recorded offences of homicide (murder, manslaughter and infanticide) by West Yorkshire police and is given in the following table.
|Total number of currently recorded homicides||33||29||33||25||36|
|Number of homicides where victim known to suspect||20||18||18||12||20|
|Proportion of homicides where victim known to suspect (percentage)||61||62||55||48||56|
|Number of homicides with suspect||30||26||33||23||34|
|Percentage of homicides with suspect||91||90||100||92||94|
Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much (a) Home Office funding, (b) National Assembly funding and (c) local authority funding was received by North Wales police in each of the last 10 years at present-day prices. 
|Home Office grant(10)||National Assembly for Wales grant(11)||Council tax||Total in cash terms||Total at 200102 prices(12)|
(10) Home Office grant includes principal formula police grant, Crime Fighting Fund, Rural Policing grant, capital grant, DMA funding and Airwave grant. Under the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) floors and ceilings arrangements, police authorities in England were guaranteed a minimum increase in principal formula police and ODPM grants of 2.3 per cent. for 200203. Floors and ceilings are not applied by the National Assembly for Wales, but to ensure North Wales benefited from a minimum increase of 2.3 per cent., my right hon. Friend, the Home Secretary exceptionally agreed to make a special payment to North Wales police authority of £362,000.
(11) National Assembly for Wales grant includes national non domestic rates and revenue support grant.
(12) Real terms are at 200102 prices using gross domestic product deflator at 27 September 2002.
(13) Before 199596, when most police authorities became independent local authorities, revenue support grant and national non domestic rates were paid as part of respective county council grant funding.
(14) The grant figure for 200203 is not directly comparable with that for 200102 owing to changes in funding for the National Crime Squad/National Criminal Intelligence Service, now funded centrally rather than through police authorities. On a comparable basis, grant for 200102 would be £93.3 million.
25 Nov 2002 : Column 103W
(b) management and (c) enforcement he is responsible to Parliament for in terms of parliamentary questions. 
Mr. Denham: The Secretary of State for the Home Department is responsible to Parliament for an efficient and effective police service in England and Wales. To that end the Police Reform Act 2002 has extended the scope of regulations, codes of practice and directions to take remedial action that the Secretary of State may issue. The Secretary of State shares with chief officers of police and police authorities the management of policing, but is not responsible for the deployment of police officers and staff. Nor is he responsible for enforcing the lawthis is a matter for those who hold the office of a constable or who have otherwise been given specific powers by Parliament. The control and direction of police officers and police support staff is vested in the chief constable, save for those staff who by agreement work for the police authority.
In former times, the Secretary of State has declined to answers related to police operations and this has been upheld by the Speaker. Recent Secretaries of State have often tried to accommodate hon. members with specific information relating to the police. Most information should be sought direct from the chief officer of police or the police authority.
Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department for how many days York's Clifford street police station was closed during and following the flood in York in November 2000; what was the revenue cost to the North Yorkshire police authority of the closure; what assessment he has made of the wider economic cost to other people in North Yorkshire who use the police station and are protected by its services; what damage was done to the building; how much it cost to repair; and whether the cost of the repairs was covered by insurance. 
During the closure services were provided from the nearby Fulford road station. The force informs me that there may have been a marginal effect on response times but that there was no great effect on residents or businesses in the city centre.
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Officer's (CSOs) in England and Wales this financial year. 27 forces bid successfully for a share of this funding.
Mr. Denham: Sir David O'Dowd's taskforce was commissioned to give the Government a police service view of what could be done to tackle the administrative burdens and inefficient working practices which keep police officers off the streets. The taskforce report highlighted ways to free up significant amounts of officers' time. We have now set up a steering group, co-chaired by the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Home Office, to take the taskforce recommendations forward.
The Government recognise its responsibilities to support this work, including considering changes to legislation where necessary. Indeed, in line with a number of taskforce recommendations, the Police Reform Act 2002 has already made the necessary changes in the law to enable chief officers to expand the range of functions that support staff can perform in the custody suite. We will also ensure that significant funding is made available to improve police information technology. This is a vital opportunity to change the culture and management of the police service and bring about a real difference to the everyday lives of officers on the front line.
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Mr. Denham: I have no current plans to do so. Support and assistance is being offered to forces on ethnic minority recruitment through annual reviews by the Home Office and Her Majesty's Inspectorate Constabulary against agreed interim targets. Good or promising practice in the areas of recruitment, retention and progression will be promulgated when identified.
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