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(24) Interim Proposals
(25) Interim Proposals, Modernisation and Diversification
(26) Modernisation, Diversification and Regeneration
We provided the substantial amount of £129 million to implement the recommendations of the Rover Task Force. Some £11 million has been spent on actions which needed to be taken immediately, for example to support the automotive supply chain. A further £17 million has supported the Modernisation of the automotive supply chain and nearly £20 million has been used for Diversification, to support and encourage businesses to engage in new activity. In addition £22 million has been agreed to create three High Tech corridors to attract and develop more high tech and high value added businesses. Overall up to March 2003 £28 million of these amounts has actually been spent and further £21 million is expected to be spent in 200304.
We also agreed an overall sum of £2 million to kickstart initiatives in the North Staffordshire area. £10 million was made available to Advantage West Midlands to buy a strategic site in Birmingham for future industrial development. In addition £42 million has been provided for good quality Regional Selective Assistance projects in the region. Some £5 million of the actual £129 million is not yet allocated to specific.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment she has made of the section of the Triennial Report of the nuclear safety advisory committee, issued on 9 December 2003, on the environmental hazards posed by the high level radioactive waste tanks at Sellafield. 
Mr. Timms: The Nuclear Safety Advisory Committee's Trienniel Report covers the period 19992001. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published detailed reports into the storage of high level radioactive waste at Sellafield. The most recent report, in HSE's Nuclear Installations Inspectorate's Newsletter of February 2003, states that:
Jane Griffiths: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many companies in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland undertake (i) installation and (ii) maintenance of oil-fired domestic central heating systems. 
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Ms Hewitt: There are many companies within the UK, ranging from major boiler manufacturing companies such as Baxi Potterton and Worcester-Bosch, to small "one man" companies who install and maintain domestic central heating boilers and systems. Many are registered with the Oil Firing Technical Association (OFTEC) and I would refer my hon. Friend to OFTECs own websitehttp://www.oftec.org/which gives access to a comprehensive list of these companies.
Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether the Royal Mail is required to conduct environmental impact studies when considering the closure of a large number of post office outlets in urban areas, with particular reference to the effects on the use of private cars to access post offices. 
Mr. Timms: There is no such requirement. The urban network programme is designed to manage change in the urban post office branch network by closing branches where there is oversupply and poor viability and investing in branches which continue to serve the area in order to prevent unmanaged decline of the network. In putting forward proposals under this programme, Post Office Ltd undertakes extensive analysis of an area, using a modelling system showing where customers live and where they shop, and how demand for post office services is currently met. It also shows overlaps in provision where two or more branches are chasing the same customer base and where the network may need to change to create viable businesses while ensuring that branches are still accessible to the customers in the area. Checks are made of local authority plans, environmental and transport information, local shopping habits, and other local developments and features are assessed on site visits. Each closure proposal is subject to a six week public consultation in accordance with the Code of Practice agreed with Postwatch.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what responsibility for defining exceptional circumstances in relation to closure under the network reinvention programme of post offices in the 10 per cent. most deprived wards lies with (a) her Department, (b) the Royal Mail Group, (c) Post Office Ltd. and (d) Postwatch. 
Mr. Timms [holding answer 18 December 2003]: Responsibility for defining exceptional circumstances in relation to closure under the network reinvention programme of post offices in the 10 per cent. most deprived wards and which are more than half a mile from the next post office rests with Post Office Ltd. All closure proposals are, however, subject to public consultation under the Code of Practice agreed between Post Office Ltd. and Postwatch.
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Programme for the Post Office network; how many closures have been made; how many such proposals have been reversed following consultation; what the locations are of post offices which have been reprieved following consultation; and what the reasons were for those branches remaining open; 
Mr. Timms [holding answers 17 December 2003]: Decisions on post office closure proposals under the urban reinvention programme following public consultation are an operational matter for Post Office Ltd and I have asked the Chief Executive to reply direct to the hon. Member.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list, for each regional development agency, its board members showing (a) for councillor members, their party and local authority and (b) for other members, any declared party affiliation and the principal business or voluntary organisation to which they belong. 
Jacqui Smith: RDA Boards are chaired by business people and at least 50 per cent. of Board members have business experience. Each Board has a maximum of 15 members. Ministers have given a commitment that four will be elected local Councillors and one will have knowledge of rural issues. The balance will have backgrounds in Trade Unions, the voluntary and community sector and higher/further education interests.
Board members are there to further the success of the RDA. They should not consider themselves to be the delegates of a particular group or body, but take into account the interests of the region as a whole.
The following table lists the people currently serving on the boards of England's Regional Development Agencies. For those who were appointed to positions allocated for councillors the table gives the relevant authority and the party they represent on that authority.
The Commissioner for Public Appointments Code of Practice, which is followed when making appointments to the Regional Development Agency Boards, requires that when announcing the appointments any press release should include details of the appointee's response to the political activity question. If no political activity has been declared this should be made clear. This information is therefore set out in the biographies of the Board members.
|Advantage West Midlands|
|Susan Davis||(Lab)||Telford and Wrekin Council|
|Paul Tilsley||(Lib Dem)||Birmingham City Council|
|Richard Hyde||(Con)||Warwickshire County Council|
|Roger Lawrence||(Lab)||Wolverhampton City Council|
|East of England Development Agency|
|Ruth Bagnall||(Lab)||Cambridge City Council|
|Sal Brinton||(Lib Dem)||Cambridgeshire County Council|
|Stephen Castle||(Con)||Essex County Council|
|Bryony Rudkin||(Lab)||Suffolk County Council|
|East Midlands Development Agency|
|Kashmir Bilgan||(Lab)(27)||Melton Borough Council|
|Graham Chapman||(Lab)||Nottingham City Council|
|Andrew Scarborough||(Lab)(27)||Wellingborough Council|
|Ross Willmott||(Lab)||Leicester City Council|
|North West Development Agency|
|Dennis G. Mendoros|
|Richard Leese||(Lab)||Manchester City Council|
|Pauleen Lane||(Lab)||Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council|
|Michael Storey||(Lib Dem)||Liverpool City Council|
|Marie Rimmer||(Lab)||St. Helens Council|
|Sir Martin Harris|
|One North East|
|Tim Cantle Jones|
|Philip Hughes||(Ind)||Teesdale District Council|
|David Walsh||(Lab)(28)||Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council|
|Christine Smith||(Lab)||Durham County Council|
|Keith Taylor||(Lab)||Newcastle City Council|
|South East England Development Agency|
|Sarah Hohler||(Con)||Kent County Council|
|Keith House||(Lib Dem)||Eastleigh Borough Council|
|Rob Anderson||(Lab)||Slough Unitary Council|
|Peter Jones||(Con)||Rother District Council|
|South West of England Regional Development Agency|
|Robin Nicholl||(Lab)(29)||Bath and North East Somerset Council|
|Catherine Bakewell||(Lib Dem)||Somerset County Council|
|Duncan Hames||(Lib Dem)||West Wiltshire District Council|
|Christine Reid||(Lab)||North Wiltshire District Council|
|Dr. Christopher King|
|Eileen Bosomworth||(Con)||Scarborough Borough Council|
|Kathryn Pinnock||(Lib Dem)||Kirklees Council|
|Stephen Houghton||(Lab)||Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council|
|Nicholas Dakin||(Lab)||North Lincolnshire Council|
(27) These Board members lost their seats in the local elections in May 2003, they are not required to resign but they will stand down from the board when their first term of appointment ends on 13 December 2004.
(28) This Board member lost his seat in the local elections in May 2003, he is not required to resign but will stand down from the board when his first term of appointment ends on 13 December 2004.
(29) This Board member did not stand as a candidate in the local elections in May 2003 he is not required to resign but will stand down from the board when his first term of appointment ends on 13 December 2004.
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