Previous Section Index Home Page

5 Jan 2004 : Column 149W—continued

Police Authority Precepts

Helen Jackson: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister by how much in total police authority precepts have exceeded their grant increase over each of the past five years. [143970]

Mr. Raynsford: The amount by which the increase in police authority precepts has exceeded the increase in grant for the years 1998–99 to 2003–04 is tabled as follows:

Amount by which increase in precepts exceeds grants to the nearest whole £ million
1998–99 to 1999–2000-103
1999–2000 to 2000–01-75
2000–01 to 2001–02-127
2001–02 to 2002–03109
2002–03 to 2003–04129

This table includes all police authorities except the Metropolitan Police and the City of London. In each year, grants have been compared with previous years' grants on a like-for-like basis, taking into account adjustments for changes in function and funding.

The data for the years 1998–99 to 2002–03 are outturn data taken from the RS forms. The data for 2003–04 are budget data taken from the RA forms as outturn data are not yet available. These forms are completed each year by individual local authorities.

The grants included are Police Grant, redistributed business rates and Revenue Support Grant. Amounts received under the SSA Reduction Grant (Police Funding Review), and Central Support Protection Grant have also been included, where appropriate. In addition to the grants included in the table, police authorities also received a number of special and specific grants.

Regional Assemblies

Mr. Curry: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the cost was of establishing a website for the Elected Regional Assembly: Your Say campaign. [145987]

Mr. Raynsford: The Your Say website is part of the general Office of the Deputy Prime Minister website. The only cost of establishing the website was the use of a small amount of staff time.

Mr. Curry: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many copies of the information leaflet Elected Regional Assembly: "Your Say" have been (a) printed and (b) distributed in (i) Yorkshire and the Humber, (ii) the North West and (iii) the North East. [145988]

Mr. Raynsford: To date the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister have so far printed and issued 6,200 "Your Say" leaflets for each of the three northern regions.

5 Jan 2004 : Column 150W

Mr. Curry: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1) what the total cost of expenditure has been on promoting regional assemblies in each year since May 2002; [146047]

Mr. Raynsford: The information campaign is designed to inform members of the public about elected regional assemblies and referendums. The costs of the launch are estimated at £25,000. These costs included accommodation, venue hire, refreshments and transport.

Material produced for the launch of the campaign, such as exhibition stands and leaflets will continue to be used throughout the information campaign in the three northern regions. The estimated total cost for the "information campaign" for this financial year are expected to be £500,000.

Relationship Managers

Mr. Brady: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister which local authorities he is assessing for (a) the introduction of relationship managers and (b) transferring the control of their services to other councils; and what criteria he has used in making these assessments. [145229]

Mr. Raynsford: The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has appointed lead officials to work with the 13 education and social services authorities rated "poor" under the Comprehensive Performance Assessment (CPA) carried out by the Audit Commission in 2002; also with two authorities which were rated "weak" in 2002 but with poor corporate capacity to improve; and at present with one district council rated as "poor" in October 2003. These authorities are: Bedfordshire, Coventry, Hackney, Islington, Kingston-upon-Hull, Lambeth, North East Lincolnshire, North Tyneside, Oldham, Plymouth, Swindon, Torbay, Torridge, Wakefield, Walsall and Waltham Forest.

In addition, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has been working on a voluntary basis prior to CPA assessment with Chester-le-Street, Erewash and Rossendale district councils. Discussions are currently also under way with a number of authorities who were rated "weak" in 2002 with a view to working on a voluntary basis with them.

It is for the councils themselves to identify the key steps needed to achieve recovery through improvement. The role of lead officials is to monitor their rate of progress, and to provide advice to Ministers on whether that rate of progress is acceptable. Under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1999, the Government do have power to intervene in authorities which fail to comply with their duty of best value.

Wind Farms

Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what planning guidelines apply to wind farms in areas of outstanding natural beauty. [145746]

5 Jan 2004 : Column 151W

Keith Hill: The current guidelines are set out in Planning Policy Guidance note 22: Renewable Energy (PPG22). Paragraphs 27 to 29 of the PPG set out the guidelines for assessing development proposals relating to all renewable energy projects in National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Broads and Sites of Special Scientific Interest. A draft revised Planning Policy Statement 22, which will replace the existing PPG22, was issued for three months consultation on 5 November.


Consumer Spending

Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer by how much consumer spending has increased, in real terms, in each quarter since 1997. [146129]

Ruth Kelly: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Mike Hughes to Mr. Stephen O'Brien dated 5 January 2004:

Household final consumption expenditure(36): quarter-on-quarter growth (%) in volume terms, 1997–2003—United Kingdom


(36) Seasonally adjusted

Government Employees

Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what percentage of the working population in each region of the UK is government employees. [145116]

Ruth Kelly: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Len Cook to Mr. George Osborne, dated 5 January 2004:

5 Jan 2004 : Column 152W

Percentages of employment in central Government and the Civil Service by region
Three months ending August 2003(37)

Government office region of residencePercentage
East Midlands2.1
North East3.5
North West3.0
Northern Ireland6.4
South East 2.7
South West2.7
West Midlands1.8
Yorkshire and Humberside3.0
United Kingdom2.9

(37) Percentage, no seasonally adjusted.


Labour Force Survey

Next Section Index Home Page