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Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment his Department has made of the (a) identity and (b) threat represented by the Yellow-Red Overseas Organization; and if he will make a statement. 
The Government recognises the serious threat posed by terrorism in the South East Asian region. We continuously assess the threat from terrorist cells. But for reasons which the honourable Member will understand, we do not publish these assessments.
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Mr. Laws: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs what his estimate is of total spending on the Community Legal Service's Partnership Initiative Budget in each year from 200203 to 200708; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Lammy: The Partnership Initiative Budget (PIB) is a unique funding stream which has enabled local organisations, engaged with their Community Legal Service Partnerships (CLSPs), to develop projects that improve access to advice and information for vulnerable people, focusing on local needs. Funding has been allocated over two bidding rounds, with each project attracting up to three years' funding. There will be no further rounds of the PIB.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs what action he is taking to prevent over-billing by solicitors using the Community Legal Service; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Lammy: The Legal Services Commission (LSC) monitors whether costs claimed by suppliers are reasonable, either by individual bill submitted (for civil representation) or by auditing a sample of files (for controlled work under an LSC contract).
If the costs claimed are judged as reasonable, the supplier is assessed as Category 1. Where a supplier is assessed as either Category 2 or 3the lowest ratings under the LSC's costs assessment auditthe LSC recovers the amounts over claimed from the supplier. If the supplier gets a Category 3 rating they are put on notice that they will be audited again in six months. If they are still rated as Category 3 on a re-audit, their contract will be terminated.
Under the new Tailored Fixed Fee Scheme, which will become mandatory in April 2005, the LSC will be introducing management information systems that will enable them to identify trends and take action where clients or the fund may be at risk. The systems will allow the LSC to monitor reported and actual costs of cases, changes in case mix and duration of cases, and changes in disbursements incurred.
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Mr. Laws: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs what his estimate is of the outstanding value of Legal Aid debts; and what action is being taken to recover these debts. 
Mr. Lammy: The Legal Services Commission had debts due to it at the end of the financial year 200304 of £262 million. Much of this debtaround 72 per cent.secured by the registration of a statutory charge against property and is not, generally, immediately collectable. The LSC allows the funded client to postpone the operation of the charge, subject to certain conditions, and the debt is not repayable until the property is sold or upon the death of the client.
Cases relating to the statutory charge have since 1988 attached interest. The rate of interest is linked to the Bank of England base rate and currently stands at 5 per cent. simple interest. £50 million of the gross debt due to the Commission relates to interest.
Other debts due to the LSC are normally immediately repayable and are pursued by a debt recovery team. In 200304, the LSC successfully recovered £28 million worth of debt. Some of these debts may be owed by funded clients (for example unpaid contributions towards funding legal aid) and are difficult to recover given the limited financial circumstances of the clients.
Mr. Heald: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs what (a) guidelines and (b) legislative provisions regulate whether a referendum may be held during a (i) general election, (ii) local election and (iii) devolved Parliament or regional assembly election; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Leslie: There are no Government guidelines or legislative provisions regulating whether a referendum may be held during a general election, local election or devolved Parliament or regional assembly election. The European Union Bill includes provision to allow for combination of polls if the referendum were to take place on the same day as an election or other referendum, as a contingency measure. The Government are aware of the views of the Electoral Commission published in 2003 ahead of Parliamentary and local government elections in Scotland and the Assembly elections in Wales and Northern Ireland that referendums should not be held at the same time as other major polls.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many grant applications have been made by the Andersonstown News Group in the last six months to (a) Invest NI and (b) other Government agencies or department. 
Mr. Gardiner: Three applications have been received from July 2004 to date; (a) one application was received by Invest NI and (b) two were received by North/South Implementation Bodies. Details are as follows:
(a) Invest NI considered an application from the Andersonstown News Group (ANG) for assistance under the Strategic Development Programme for which Invest NI contributes 60 per cent. of the consultancy costs. The ANG subsequently decided to withdraw the application.
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when he expects that the autistic spectrum disorders sub-group of the Mental Health Review will produce its report; and if this report will have the same significance as those of the Working Committees. 
Angela Smith: The Review of Mental Health and Learning Disability is an independent review and it is for review members to decide on how they deal with issues relating to autistic spectrum disorder. I understand that a report on autistic spectrum disorder, based largely on the outcome of a conference held in December 2004, will be considered by the review Steering Committee at the end of February. The Steering Committee will then decide whether this will be issued as a separate report and, if so, the timescale for finalising and presenting to the Department.
Angela Smith: Plans are well advanced for a review of the Children First Strategy, which was originally published in 1999. Terms of Reference have been established and it is expected that a report on the review should be completed by the end of May 2005.
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