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For the first stage of this process, the Secretary of State will appoint an advisory panel to advise her on the areas in which the new regional casinos should be located. In taking forward its work, it will invite the regional planning bodies in England, whose function outside London is undertaken by the regional chambers, to identify a list of broad locations for regional casinos emerging from the work on their regional spatial strategies. At least 60 per cent. of the members of the regional planning body must be members of a range of authorities in the region, including county councils. Regional planning bodies are also required to seek the advice of county councils when revising regional spatial strategies.
Under the Gambling Bill, potential casino operators will also be required to obtain a premises licence from their local licensing authority. The Bill provides that in the case of a county in which there are no district councils, the licensing authority is the county council.
Keith Hill: Subject to consultation on secondary legislation, and the views of Parliament, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister expects to bring the provisions in the Housing Act 2004 on Empty Dwelling Management Orders into force in England in October 2005.
Yvette Cooper: The 200506 homelessness grant allocations to London boroughs were based on a review of the 200304 and 200405 grants. The 200405 grants were composed of two elements. The first element allocated to all authorities was formula based reflecting historical levels of homelessness. The second element was awarded following a competitive bidding process open to all authorities.
The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister will also be making some capital grant allocations to some London boroughs as part of a hostels capital improvement project. These grants have been targeted on areas that have succeeded in reducing rough sleeping, but still have a high level of single homelessness in hostels that are often no longer fit for purpose.
Keith Hill: The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister expects the licensing scheme for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) will come into force in October 2005, subject to passage of the relevant secondary legislation.
The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is currently consulting on the proposals for implementation of the HMO licensing scheme in the consultation paper Licensing in the Private Rented SectorConsultation on the Implementation of HMO Licensing". The closing date for responses was 9 February.
Keith Hill: The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister proposes to lay before Parliament in July a complete package of technical and enforcement guidance on the Housing Health and Safety Rating System, in accordance with section 9 of the Housing Act 2004. Draft technical guidance on the system ("Version 2") was published in November 2004, and we do not expect to propose substantive changes to that guidance before implementation of Part 1 of the 2004 Act, which is planned for October 2005.
Mrs. Humble: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1) how many employees in England and Wales retired under the 85 year rule of the Local Government Pension Scheme in each year between 1997 and 2003; 
The 85 year rule is not a qualifying condition which conveys a right to retire. It only determines whether and to what extent an actuarial
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reduction to a pension will apply. Consequently data on such decisions is not held centrally, and could only be provided at disproportionate cost. Information on individual decisions taken by scheme members and their employers is best sought from the administering authorities responsible for the Local Government Pension Scheme in England and Wales.
Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will estimate, in respect of the proposed changes to the Local Government Pension Scheme, how many employees in England and Wales would be affected by raising the earliest age when benefits may be paid, other than on grounds of ill health, from age 50 to 55 in each of the years between 1 April 2005 and 1 April 2015. 
Phil Hope: Until such events occur, following an employer's decision in each specific case, it is not possible to provide this information, which, in itself, could be obtained only from the authority concerned.
Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many employees in England and Wales retired before the age of (a) 60 and (b) 65 years in each year since 1997 under the Local Government Pension Scheme. 
Phil Hope: The information requested is not held centrally, and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The administering authorities responsible for the 89 separate Local Government Pension Scheme funds in England and Wales may hold this information.
John Mann: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister (1) what discussions have taken place between the Meden Valley partnership and (a) Nottinghamshire Mental Health Trust and (b) Mansfield primary care trust about stress-related health problems due to delays in regenerating housing in the Meden Valley. 
(2) what provision English Partnerships and the East Midlands Development Agency are making for residents who refuse to move and who are not offered refurbished accommodation or low-cost home ownership on completion of the Meden Valley partnership project; 
(3) whether he expects the guarantee given by his Department, the East Midlands Development Agency and English Partnerships that residents will be able to remain in the Royal Estate and Warsop Vale under the Meden Valley partnership housing regeneration programme to be maintained. 
The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister expects tenants' deposits to be protected as from July 2006, subject to passage of the relevant secondary legislation and following a procurement exercise conducted during the second half of this year.
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