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Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many bee disease inspectors there were in each year since 1997; and how many she expects there to be in 200506. 
|National bee inspector||Regional bee inspectors||Seasonal bee inspectors|
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions she has held with Bee Disease Insurance Ltd. regarding her intended reductions to the Bee Health Programme. 
Alun Michael: Defra officials met with representatives of Bee Diseases Insurance Ltd. on 24 November to discuss the possible impact of future plans for the bee health programme on its insurance scheme.
Bee Diseases Insurance Ltd. was also represented when my noble friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Lords) met representatives of beekeepers on 23 November and at a meeting with Defra officials on 26 November.
Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when she will reply to the letter from the hon. Member for Totnes dated 22 October, concerning a constituent, Richard Jones, and the issue of recycling. 
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many television advertisements her Department has commissioned on (a) terrestrial and (b) satellite television channels in the last 12 months; and what the cost was in each case. 
Alun Michael: The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has not commissioned any paid television advertising, for showing on terrestrial or satellite television channels in the last 12 months.
Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether it is the policy of the Department to retain for the benefit of future (a) historians and (b) applicants under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 the same (i) complete categories of files, (ii) numbers of files and (iii) representative examples of files from categories of files destroyed as had been preserved prior to the passage of that Act. 
Alun Michael: In accordance with the Public Records Act 1958 S.3, the selection of records of enduring historical value for permanent preservation at The National Archives (TNA) will continue to take place in Defra under the guidance and supervision of TNA staff. The Department will also comply with the Code of Practice on Records Management, issued by the Lord Chancellor under S.46 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, which underlines the importance of having clear selection policies and disposal schedules in place.
Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what changes have been promulgated in each of the past five years to the guidelines or other criteria for the retention or destruction of departmental files. 
Since 1999, the Department has completely revised its General disposal schedule guidance. This has been replaced by a single generic schedule, together with 13 specialised schedules to date; work on others will continue to progress where other specialist business needs are identified These schedules provide for the disposal of records which are specific to Defra's administrative activities. It also disposes of its records in accordance with over 20 guidance notes produced by The National Archives (TNA) over the last
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five years, covering disposal schedules, managing records in the electronic environment, as well as overarching records management guidance. Further details of this guidance can be found on TNA's website at: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/recordsmanagement/advice.
Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list the departmental refurbishment projects that (a) are in progress and (b) that will start in the next six months; what action is being taken to ensure that these will procure timber from legal and sustainable sources; and whether guidance will be issued to contractors on each of these projects to ensure that the timber used during refurbishment comes from legal and sustainable sources. 
No other projects are planned to start within the next three months. All are programmed for completion in 200405. Funding for 200506 refurbishment projects has not yet been allocated so it is not possible to confirm projects which might start within the first three months of 200506.
It is Defra policy to use only timber procured from sustainable and legal sources in all building and refurbishment projects. Contract conditions require suppliers and contractors to notify the Department of the source of all virgin timber supplied, including details of the forest or plantation where it was grown and all subsequent places of delivery through the supply chain prior to receipt. They must provide documentary evidence of source from a relevant body that complies with ISO Guide 65: 1996 (EN 45011:1998) General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Schemes, and who is accredited to audit against forest management standards by a national or international body. This latter body must also be compliant with ISO Guide 61 General Requirements for Assessment and Accreditation of Certification Bodies. Contractors also have an obligation to ensure that timber derives from legally felled trees according to the laws operating in the country of origin.
The Department does not collate centrally information on the procurement of shredding equipment for office use and this could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
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Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what factors underlie the increase in the rate of files shredded by her Department since January 2003; and if she will make a statement. 
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list the criteria used to decide which documents and files should be shredded; and what mechanism exists to ensure that documents and files are not destroyed for other reasons. 
Alun Michael: Defra keeps records for as long as they are needed for administrative and business purposes. Records of enduring historical value are selected for permanent preservation under the guidance and supervision of the National Archives "on the basis of guidelines which are published on the National Archives website at: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/recordsmanagement/advice/".
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