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Sarah Teather: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what estimate he has made of the likely shortfall in local authority pension funds under the (a) Local Government Pension Scheme (Amendment) Regulations 2004 and (b) Local Government Pension Scheme (Amendment) Regulations 2005. 
Mr. Woolas: Local authorities contribute to the delivery of the Office of Deputy Prime Minister's Public Service Agreement targets. These are set out in the ODPM Annual report, a copy of which has been made available in the Library of the House. They also contribute to the delivery of targets set out in the ODPM five-year plans, Sustainable Communities: People, Places and Prosperity and Sustainable Communities: Homes for all". These do not include targets set by other Departments for local authorities.
Yvette Cooper: The limits to the size and location of advertisements which may be displayed with the deemedconsent of the local planning authority are set out in the Town and Country Planning (Control of Advertisements) Regulations 1992, otherwise local planning authorities must consider amenity and public safety on a site-specific basis.
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister if he will take steps to raise professional standards among oil fired heating installers by means of the oil firing technical association scheme. 
[holding answer 7 July 2005]: The Oil Firing Technical Association for the Petroleum Industry Ltd. (OFTEC) is an industry body which installers can choose to join if they wish. It has robust entry competence standards and continuing training requirements for installers registered with it. Its installers have been found to deliver a high level of compliance with the requirements of the Building Regulations.
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No information is available on the competence level of installers which are not registered with OFTEC. They are under a duty to inform local authorities of all installations that they carry out and the local authorities are responsible for making sure that these installations meet the minimum required standards in the Building Regulations.
[holding answer 7 July 2005]: The building regulations competent person scheme operated by the Oil Firing Technical Association for the Petroleum Industry Ltd. (OFTEC) began operation on 1 April 2002. It was subject to a formal review after a year of operation. The review concluded that it had achieved a higher level of building regulations compliance than would otherwise have been the case and had helped to raise installation standards. Since that time the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has kept OFTEC under informal review and believes that the conclusions reached by the formal review remain valid.
11 Jul 2005 : Column 810W
The written statement made by my right hon. Friend the then Minister for Housing and Planning on 17 June 2004, Official Report, column 45WS, indicated that priority would be given to replacement of Planning Policy Guidance notes (PPGs) by Planning Policy Statements (PPSs) where it was required for good policy reasons. Progress on replacement of those PPGs (other than PPG3) identified in the statement as a priority is tabled as follows.
|PPS Number||Subject||Consultation draft||Publication of revised PPS/PPG|
|1||Delivering Sustainable Development||23 February 2004||1 February 2005|
|4||Economic Development||To be decided|||
|6||Planning for Town Centres||15 December 2003||21March 2005|
|7||Sustainable Development in Rural Areas||15 September 2003||3 August 2004|
|9||Nature Conservation/ Biodiversity||8 September 2004||August 2005|
|10||Waste Management||6 December 2004||Summer 2005|
|11||Regional Planning||13 October 2003||7 September 2004|
|12||Development Plans||13 October 2003||7 September 2004|
|22||Renewable Energy||5 November 2003||9 August 2004|
|23||Pollution Control||February plus July 2002||3 November 2004|
|24||Planning and Noise||Autumn 2005||Summer 2006|
|25||Development and Flood Risk||Autumn 2005|||
Yvette Cooper: Estimates of the number of privately rented households in England during 200304, broken down by Government Office Region, are set out in the following table. The figures are derived from the Survey of English Housing", which is an annual survey of around 20,000 households. While the survey is large enough to provide reasonable estimates of the number of private renters by region, it cannot be used to provide estimates at local authority level.
|Government office region||Privately renting households||All households||Private renters as a percentage of all households|
|Yorkshire and Humber||176,000||2,137,000||8|
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