Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he was first contacted by the Parliamentary Ombudsman in relation to her inquiry into complaints about occupational pensions; and when he completed his submission of evidence to the inquiry. 
The Parliamentary Ombudsman wrote to the Permanent Secretary to the Treasury on 16 November 2004 to indicate that she would conduct
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an investigation into complaints she had received relating to occupational pensions. The Permanent Secretary wrote to the Parliamentary Ombudsman on 17 December 2004 in response to those elements of the investigation relating to the Treasury.
John Healey: The ONS produce a number of price indices that measure oil price changes and changes in the by-products of oil. These include individual price indices published as constituent parts of the producer prices index, and the retail and consumer price indices, including the by-products of oil. For example, the producer input prices index is disaggregated by commodity group, which separately identifies the changes in crude oil prices, fuel prices, chemical prices and other groupings. All of these published indices are available on the ONS website: www.statistics.gov.uk.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the rates of (a) perinatal mortality and (b) infant mortality in each primary care trust were in (i) the Southend area, (ii) Essex and (iii) England and Wales in each of the last five years for which figures are available. 
The National Statistician has been asked to reply to your recent question asking what the rates of perinatal mortality and infant mortality in each primary care trust were in (a) the Southend area, (b) Essex and (c) England and Wales in each of the last five years for which figures are available. I am replying in his absence. (10559)
Information on infant and perinatal mortality is routinely published for local authorities and strategic health authorities. Figures for England and Wales, Essex and Southend unitary authority are given in the attached table.
|England and Wales
|Perinatal mortality rate(30)
|Infant mortality rate(31)
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what progress his Department has made in assessing the potential to release public sector spectrum to the market; and if he will make a statement. 
John Healey: The Chancellor announced an independent audit of spectrum holdingsfocusing on the public sectorin his pre-Budget report in 2004. The audit is being carried out by Professor Martin Cave, who intends to publish a consultation paper on emerging issues before delivering his final report ahead of the 2005 pre-Budget report.
Mr. Quentin Davies: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many self-assessing taxpayers were selected for random audits in the 200405 financial year; how many such audits were carried out; what the cost was; and what their yield was in terms of (a) unpaid tax and (b) penalties received by HM Revenue and Customs. 
Dawn Primarolo: In the tax year 200405 the Inland Revenue (now part of HM Revenue and Customs) selected 6,482 Income Tax Self Assessment taxpayers for random enquiry. 401 Corporation Tax Self Assessment taxpayers were selected for random enquiry in the same year. The deadline for opening these enquiries has not yet passed. Therefore no figures are available to show how many of these inquiries have been carried out. It is also too early to determine what yield these inquiries will produce.
Further to the written answer I gave the hon. Gentleman on 26 May 2005, Official Report, column 191W, HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) is preparing business plans to meet its efficiency savings for 200508.
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Tom Brake: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what the estimated revenues for the lorry road user charging project are; and what proportion of the estimated revenues for the project are expected to come from each part of the UK; 
Jim Cousins: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many disclosures of (a) direct tax and (b) VAT avoidance schemes have been made under the 2004 rules; and how many promoters of such schemes have made disclosures. 
Dawn Primarolo: There have been 524 disclosures for direct tax and 787 for VAT up to 30 June 2005. The number of promoters who made disclosures in that period is 102. These figures attest to the success of the disclosure rules.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1)what his estimate is of the time needed to resolve the problems identified in the Ombudsman's report in the administration of tax credits; and if he will make a statement; 
Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to ask Revenue and Customs to contact everyone who has been overpaid tax credits as a result of official error to inform them that that was the reason for the overpayment; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: Accuracy levels for processing working families' tax credit and disabled person's tax credit applications in 200102 and 200203 can be found in the Board's Annual Reports for those years.
Similarly, performance against the accuracy target for processing new tax credits claims for 200304 was published in the Annual Report for the year ended 31 March 2004. These reports are available on the internet at:
Jim Cousins: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) whether the calculation of overpayments of tax credit takes into account (a) pension contributions and (b) charitable contributions; and whether this information is routinely requested by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs before sending out calculations of overpayment; 
(2) whether information on (a) pension contributions and (b) charitable contributions is routinely requested in the calculation of tax credits; and what percentage of tax credit claimants provided such information in the last period for which information is available. 
In both the tax credits claim form and accompanying guidance notes, claimants are advised to obtain a working sheet (TC825) to help them calculate the deductions they can make against the family's gross income on which their tax credit award is assessed.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish the advice given by (a) the Inland Revenue to the Government and (b) EDS to the Inland Revenue about system problems relating to the introduction of the new tax credits between June 2002 and May 2003; and if he will make a statement. 
Advice provided by the Inland Revenue to Ministers during this period drew on information and guidance provided by EDS. HMRC are in ongoing discussions with EDS about compensation for the system problems that arose and if these discussions do not lead to an acceptable offer the department will commence legal proceedings. In the circumstances, any advice provided to Ministers has to remain confidential.
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Mr. Laws: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what comparison he has made of error rates for payments of the (a) working families tax credit and (b) the child and working tax credits; how the error rates compare with those forecast by the Department in (i) 2001, (ii) 2002, and (iii) 2003; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: HMRC are currently undertaking a programme of work on finalised 200304 awardsthe first year of working tax credit and child tax creditto provide more information on the level of claimant error and fraud. child and working tax credits (CTC/WTC) are very different in scale and scope compared to their predecessors, working families' tax credit (WFTC) and disabled persons tax credit (DPTC) because of the annual nature of awards and because they are designed to react to any changes in personal circumstances during the period of an award. Also, significantly more families benefit from them, including a large proportion that are only receiving the family element. These fundamental differences do not lend themselves to direct comparison.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many open days have been held by the Inland Revenue in the last 12 months for staff and volunteers of independent advice services providing assistance to tax credit claimants; how many people have attended such open days; and if he will make a statement on (a) feedback received and (b) resultant action. 
Dawn Primarolo: Between 1 April 2004 and 31 March 2005 Tax Credit Office attended 151 events around the country. The events were attended by around 3,600 people from the voluntary and community sector (VCS).
(b) TCO representatives undertake to answer separately any advisers' questions that could not be answered immediately at the event. They also report back any points that have arisen to colleagues as appropriate, in case any further follow up action may be required.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to delay the transfer of the families who currently receive their child tax credit through Jobcentre Plus, but whose awards are due to be transferred to HM Revenue and Customs in 200506.