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Dr. Kumar: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what (a) targets he has set and (b) estimates he has made for the number of (i) lone parents and (ii) those on incapacity benefits who may return to work as a result of back to work bonuses being extended for a year, as announced in the pre-Budget report. 
Mr. Timms: There are no targets set, or current estimates for, the number of (i) lone parents or (ii) those on incapacity benefits who may return to work as a result of back to work bonuses being extended for a year, as announced in the pre-Budget report.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how may people in Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland he estimates will qualify for the extension of back to work bonuses for a year, as announced in the pre-Budget report. 
Tees Valley is one of the 14 Jobcentre Plus Districts which will be covered by the extension of the Pathways to Work pilots announced in the 2004 PBR. Pathways to Work pilots offer a range of additional support for incapacity benefits recipients including a 52-week Return to Work Credit. In Tees Valley there were around 12,000 new/repeat IB starts in the year to the end of May 2004 (the latest month for which we have complete benefits data), and approximately 41,000 existing recipients, all of whom can access the RTWC.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the effects on Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituents of the pre-Budget announcements on (a) additional expenditure on children and childcare and (b) the 3,500 Sure Start child centres to be established by 2010. 
Mr. Timms: "Choice for parents, the best start for children: a 10 year strategy for childcare" published alongside the pre-Budget report this year announced additional expenditure of £600 million by 200708 to support children and parents. This will benefit families right across the country. The Sure Start Unit will work, in conjunction with stakeholders, to determine where and how the details of the pre-Budget report announcements will be implemented.
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what his estimate is of the number of families living
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in the London Borough of Wandsworth who are entitled to the child tax credit; and if he will make a statement; 
Dawn Primarolo: The numbers in receipt of tax credits are shown in "Child and Working Tax Credits Statistics, Geographical Analyses January 2004". This appears on the Inland Revenue web site, at www.inlandrevenue.gov.uk/stats/personal-tax-credits/menu.htm. Figures for December 2004 will be published on 23 December.
Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many conferences were (a) attended by officials from his Department, (b) cancelled by and (c) facilitated by his Department in each year since 1997; and what the (i) cost to the Department and (ii) location was in each case. 
Dawn Primarolo: (a) The numbers of staff employed in civil service departments and agencies since 1997, including HM Customs and Excise, are available on the Cabinet Office's "Civil Service Statistics" website at http://www.civilservice.gov.uk/manaqement information/statistical information/statistics/index.asp and in the annual editions of "Civil Service Statistics'.
|Number of dogs|
|31 March 1998||92|
|31 March 2002||54|
|31 March 2003||51|
|31 March 2004||54|
|10 December 2004||(21)59|
As at our last billing date of November the Treasury had 336 credit cards for official expenditure. 196 of these accounts are for paying for low value goods and services in HM Treasury and the remaining 140 are used for travel and subsistence expenses incurred while on official business.
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Mr. Bercow: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what the total external spending by his Department on Private Finance Initiative consultants in each of the last two years was; how many full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period; how many billed consultancy days there were per year; what the implied average cost of each PFI consultant was; how many consultancy firms were used by his Department over this period; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what the total external spending by his Department was on public private partnership (PPP) consultants in each of the last two years; how many full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period; how many billed consultancy days there were per year; what the implied average cost of each PPP consultant was; how many consultancy firms were used by his Department over this period; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Timms: Information is provided below regarding the total external spending by the Chancellor's departments on PFI/PPP consultants for the last two years. It also identifies the number of PFI/PPP consultancy firms that have been used over the same period. In those instances in which this information is not provided it is because data on PFI/PPP consultancy cannot be readily disaggregated from that of other consultancy expenditure, and to do so would involve disproportionate cost.
Provision of the information requested regarding the number of full-time equivalent consultants employed, number of billed consultancy days, and the implied average cost of each PFI/PPP consultant has not been provided in most cases as to do so would entail a disproportionate cost.
The total spending on external PFI consultants in 200203 is £4.059 million and in 200304 is £3.932 million. The figures provided include both consultancy on PFI projects and on PFI policy. The Treasury has used three consultancy firms over this period.
Inland Revenue expenditure on external PFI consultancy amounts to a total of £1.142 million for the financial years 200203 and 200304. This includes the STEPS PFI contract entered into jointly by the Inland Revenue, HM Customs and Excise, and the Valuation Office Agency. The Inland Revenue used 19 consultancy firms over this period.
Inland Revenue spend on PPP Consultancy for 200203 was £62,600 excluding VAT. 0.2 full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period and a total of 45.3 consultancy days billed. The implied average cost was £1,382 per day excluding VAT and two consultancy firms were used over this period. PPP consultancy spend for 200304 was £69,800 excluding VAT. 0.2 full-time equivalent consultants were employed over this period and a total of 42.2 consultancy days billed. The implied average cost was £1,654 per day excluding VAT and two consultancy firms were used.
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HM Customs and Excise does not separately identify PFI/PPP consultancy from other consultancy expenditure. Identifiable consultancy spend within PFI projects amounted to £2.777 million over the last two financial years. This figure includes consultancy that has been carried out within a PFI project, but that has not necessarily been PFI consultancy. Disaggregating the two elements would incur disproportionate cost. HM Customs and Excise have used 13 consultancy firms within their PFI projects over this period.
Mr. George Osborne: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much has been spent by his Department on (a) indoor bought plants, (b) indoor hired plants, (c) outdoor bought plants and (d) outdoor hired plants in each year since 1997. 
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