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Mrs. Gillan: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what are the reasons for the length of time it took to conclude the inquest into the death of Marcus Downie; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Harman: The Essex and Thurrock coroner has explained the reasons for delay in holding this inquest. Following the death by hanging of Marcus Downie on 11 May 2002 in HMP Chelmsford there was a police investigation and an internal Prison Service inquiry. At the pre-inquest hearing in May 2003 the family's representatives made several requests for further information, including expert psychiatric evidence. A date in September 2003 was provisionally booked for the inquest, but the coroner decided to await the House of Lords judgments in two relevant cases, Middleton and Sacker which were delivered in March 2004. Staff shortages in the coroner's office prevented progress during the summer and autumn of 2004 but a further pre-inquest hearing was held on in January 2005 and, after difficulties in finding a suitable courtroom for a lengthy jury inquest, it was held between 3 and 12 October 2005.
Norman Baker: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs how many air miles were accrued through departmental ministerial travel in 200405, broken down by Minister; how many were (a) foregone and (b) donated to charity, broken down by charity; and whether air miles accrued by officials were required to be (i) foregone and (ii) given to charity. 
Bridget Prentice: Figures for air miles accrued by Ministers are not held by this Department. All ministerial travel is conducted in accordance with the Ministerial Code and Travel by Ministers" and guidance for Ministers on the use of air miles is set out in the Ministerial Code". This guidance makes clear that air miles should be used only for official purposes or else foregone. However, if it is impracticable to use the benefits for Government travel, it is possible for Ministers to donate them to charity if permitted under the terms of the airline's scheme. Similar rules are in place for officials.
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what guidelines she has issued on how criminal cases involving persistent and prolific offenders should be treated by the courts. 
The PPO Strategy requires courts to provide a Premium Service" so that relevant cases are listed expeditiously, trial readiness is checked regularly, ineffective trials are always monitored, enforcement warrants are given priority and orders are flagged up to the Prison, Probation and Youth Offending Services, as appropriate.
Mike Wood: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will make it a requirement for returning officers to make available a marked register indicating postal voters. 
Mrs. Gillan: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs if she will list the inquests that have been completed in the past five years following a death in prison; what the date of the (a) death and (b) inquest was in each case; and if she will make a statement. 
Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs what steps her Department (a) is taking and (b) plans to take to increase turnout in the next general election. 
Tackling low turnout at elections is a complex issue and one we cannot deal with through legislation alone. However, some of the measures in
24 Oct 2005 : Column 14W
the Electoral Administration Billparticularly giving Returning Officers the power to promote elections and providing funding for them to do so, and also enabling people to register after an election has been calledshould help to improve turnout at elections.
Mr. Gummer: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister whether (a) he and (b) his officials have discussed with the Architects Registration Board rules of propriety in choosing members employed in quasi-judicial inquiries. 
Yvette Cooper: There have been no discussions as the Government has no powers to intervene. Provisions for the membership of the Professional Conduct Committee are prescribed by the Architects Act 1997 as amended by The Architects (Professional Conduct Committee) Amendment Order 2004 (SI 2004 No. 655).
Jim Fitzpatrick: Seven vehicles for which the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is responsible are fitted with retreaded tyres. All seven are specialist vehicles at the Fire Service College, that do not travel at speeds in excess of 20mph.
For information on the use of retread tyres in vehicles provided to the Department by the Government Car and Despatch Agency I refer the hon. Member to the letter of 11 October 2005 which he received from the Chief Executive of the GCDA, reference UIN15087 and UIN15088. Copies of this letter are available in the Library of the House.
To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what representations he has received concerning the planning application for the re-development of
24 Oct 2005 : Column 15W
Highbury Stadium into Highbury Square; and whether he has made (a) decision and (b) statement on the application. 
Yvette Cooper: Planning permission was granted by Islington Council on 30 September 2005 for the redevelopment of Highbury Stadium for a predominately residential scheme. The planning application was not referred to my right hon. Friend the Deputy Prime Minister the First Secretary of State and he received no representations or requests to intervene.
Yvette Cooper: Information about local authorities' actions under homelessness legislation is collected in respect of households, rather than persons. The number of households reported by Gravesham after completion of enquiries to be eligible, unintentionally homeless but not in a priority need category between 1 January and 30 June 2005, was 99.
|Tonbridge and Malling||417||414||346||273||337||589||475|
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for South-West Surrey (Mr. Hunt) of 14 October 2005, Official Report, column 612W, on housing, if he will break down the figures by London borough. 
Yvette Cooper: Estimates for densities of new residential dwellings for London boroughs are from Land Use Change Statistics and are shown as follows. The densities are very variable from one year to the next as they can be affected by a small number of developments in each borough.
|City of London||||||||||50||667|||||||||
|Barking and Dagenham||167||||||65||63||36||53||67||86||42|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||||||||75||140||70||38||38||19||43|
|Kensington and Chelsea||200||||||71||100||98||41||51||85||68|
|Kingston upon Thames||16||||43||42||50||41||41||37||36||37|
|Richmond upon Thames||29||15||52||42||38||32||41||39||57||56|
|City of London||||5||80||230||165||266||960|||||||
|Barking and Dagenham||58||43||47||44||39||42||41||54||104||190|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||91||84||62||85||72||83||55||68||52|||
|Kensington and Chelsea||56||84||95||91||107||119||25||142||80|||
|Kingston upon Thames||26||46||37||53||33||46||35||54||92||59|
|Richmond upon Thames||61||32||32||64||48||45||48||62||56||59|
Local authorities in England report the numbers of households on their housing waiting list as at 1 April in their annual Housing Strategy Statistical Appendix returns. Local authorities sometimes maintain a common waiting list with the Housing Association/s in their district. However, information is not held centrally where a Housing Association maintains a separate waiting list to the local authority.
|Local authority||Number of households|
|Barking and Dagenham||2,321|
|City of London||1,204|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||8,384|
|Kensington and Chelsea||9,436|
|Kingston upon Thames||4,903|
|Richmond upon Thames||4,898|
Yvette Cooper: Data on the number of people in council housing in Kent are not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The Office of the Deputy Prime Minister has information on the number of dwellings owned by each district authority in Kent. This data as at 1 April 2005 are given in the following table:
|Tonbridge and Malling||0|
Mr. Khan: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what the council allocations were for housing transfers into (a) one, (b) two, (c) three, (d) four and (e) five bedroom properties in each London borough in the last year for which figures are available. 
Yvette Cooper: Information on the number of local authority lettings which involve transfers is not available by number of bedrooms centrally. However, the following information on lettings which relates to transfers is collected:
|Dwellings let to existing tenants|
within own stock
|Local authority||Dwellings let through mobility arrangements||Dwellings let through mutual exchanges||Total||of which:|
Number to fewer bedrooms
|Barking and Dagenham||23||127||667||79|
|City of London||1||5||32||0|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||11||74||252||31|
|Kensington and Chelsea||0||15||91||25|
|Kingston upon Thames||15||46||60||18|
|Richmond upon Thames||0||0||0||0|
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what requirement there is for tenant involvement in registered social landlords after transfer of council housing in large scale voluntary transfers; and how performance is audited after transfers have taken place. 
Yvette Cooper: It is normally most appropriate for a transfer RSL's governing board to comprise one-third tenants, no more than one-third local authority nominees, and at least one-third independent members.
All RSLs have a duty to publish a statement of how they will involve their residents in improving the association's services and how this involvement will influence outcomes. Each year, associations must review the effectiveness of the statement and prepare an impact assessment.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what assessment he has made of the levels of tenant satisfaction (a) before and after large-scale voluntary transfer, (b) before and after the establishment of arm's length management organisations, (c) of tenants in privatised council housing and (d) of tenants remaining in council controlled housing. 
Yvette Cooper: Data from the Survey of English Housing (SEH) for 200405 show that 74 per cent. of tenants of registered social landlords (RSLs) are satisfied with the housing services provided by their landlord, and 67 per cent. of local authority tenants are satisfied. Housemark data for 200405 show that 75 of tenants of arm's length management organisations (ALMOs) are satisfied.
The SEH 200405 also asked RSL tenants whose homes had been transferred from local authority ownership since 2000 how the service provided by the RSL compared to that from the local authority. 27 per cent. of tenants reported that the service from the RSL
24 Oct 2005 : Column 22W
was better than the local authority, 62 per cent. said it was the same and 11 per cent. said it was worse. No comparable question was asked for ALMOs.
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