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Mr. Plaskitt: The Howell Opinion prevents local authorities prosecuting cases involving DWP administered benefits. Local authorities and this Department may conduct a joint investigation. Such cases would require an element of duplicated working within the local authority and the Department. Alternatively, if it is not possible to conduct a joint investigation there is a risk that the Department and the local authority might investigate or prosecute the same individual twice for a similar offence.
We intend to introduce at the earliest opportunity, amendments to primary legislation to enable local authorities to investigate and prosecute national benefits alongside housing or council tax benefit.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many and what proportion of income support recipients receiving a disability premium have been on the benefit for (a) less than one year, (b) less than two years, (c) less than five years and (d) less than eight years. 
|Income support claimants with a disability premium|
|Up to 1 year||89,800||8.0|
|1 year and up to 2 years||140,300||12.6|
|2 years and up to 5 years||306,500||27.5|
|5 years and up to 8 years||202,400||18.1|
|8 years and over||376,600||33.8|
The in work credit is designed to help lone parents cope with the financial aspects of moving from welfare to work, and ensure they are better off in work. It is being piloted in 23 Jobcentre Plus districts and has been rolled out in four phases from April 2004 to October 2005.
The areas covered are: Bradford; North London; South East London; Cardiff; Central London; Dudley and Sandwell; Edinburgh, Lothian and Borders; Lancashire West; Leeds; Leicestershire; Staffordshire; West London; Brent, Harrow and Hillingdon; City and East; Lambeth; Southwark and Wandsworth; South London; Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire; Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire; Essex; Hampshire; Kent; and Surrey and Sussex.
The work search premium helps remove the disincentive for lone parents in the costs of looking for work. It is being piloted in eight Jobcentre Plus districts: Bradford, Cardiff and Vale, Dudley and Sandwell, Edinburgh, Lancashire West, Leicestershire, South East London, and West London.
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your question about what additional facilities are proposed to assist those currently using the Jobcentre in Burslem. This is something that falls within the responsibilities delegated to me as Chief Executive of Jobcentre Plus.
As you will be aware, Burslem Jobcentre is scheduled to close in March 2007. Those customers currently claiming jobseeker's allowance through Burslem Jobcentre will have access to services provided by the new, purpose-built premises, planned for Hanley, only three miles away from the current Burslem Jobcentre location. Burslem customers claiming Incapacity Benefit and Income Support already use the Hanley site for all their dealings with Jobcentre Plus.
A feasibility study of alternative local locations options has been undertaken and negotiations are currently under way with the local authority over the introduction of telephone facilities in Burslem library to allow our customers to access our services direct, free of charge.
Consideration is also being given to the possibility of routing the Staffordshire JobsBus through Burslem. The JobsBus is a mobile unit offering customers access to vacancy information, telephone and fax facilities and also an employment information computer package. Specialist advisers often join the regular JobsBus staff to offer specific advice, for example to lone parents, people returning to work after ill health or people who have health problems that affect the work that they can do. I have asked Julie Carruthers, the District Manager for Jobcentre Plus in Staffordshire, to contact you when a decision on this is reached.
Entitlement to disability living allowance is based on mobility difficulties and/or the need for personal care which results from severe disability. Attendance allowance is available to those disabled after the age of 65. The customer's medical condition is not, necessarily, the key factor; rather it is the disablement that results from it and the effects of that disablement.
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will list the Jobcentre Plus districts identified for the pilot the Building on New Deal programme; which of the districts have since been dropped from the pilot programme; and what assessment he has made of the likely effects of the changes in the number of pilots. 
Margaret Hodge: Since the original announcement of 11 Building on New Deal (BoND) pilot districts in November 2004, we have undertaken a detailed planning and impact analysis to ensure that the measures detailed in the BoND strategy paper can be tested as originally envisaged, and that the design is affordable. Given this and our proposals to reduce the number of Jobcentre Plus districts, we have decided that seven areas are sufficient to test the effectiveness of BoND. This allows for the robust evaluation needed to inform decisions on national implementation.
The seven chosen areas allow us to test BoND in different types of labour markets across the country, including urban and rural locations, and areas with a greater concentration of people from black and minority ethnic communities. Seven comparator areas have been chosen using the same criteria, enabling a clear comparison of performance between BoND and comparator areas.
The Jobcentre Plus districts identified to pilot BoND from October 2006 are: Ayrshire, Dumfries, Galloway and Inverclyde; Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire; Cardiff and Vale; Cheshire and Warrington; Cornwall; Northamptonshire; and North East London.
Calderdale and Kirklees; Gateshead and South Tyneside; Norfolk; and The Marches have now been removed from the pilots. This change will not affect the validity of the evaluation.
11 Nov 2005 : Column 799W
Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make a statement on progress on Building on New Deal for Work, with particular reference to (a) decentralisation of decision making, (b) specialist programmes for individual needs and (c) the establishment of pilot areas. 
Margaret Hodge: We have achieved significant success in our new deal programmes, helping over a million people in to work. We are determined to build on this achievement to deliver more support for those people who face the most difficult barriers to work.
Building on new deal will give personal advisers and local managers greater flexibility, allowing them to provide tailored support to better meet the needs of individuals and of local labour markets. It will also give them more scope to work in partnership with employers and other agencies to tackle local problems that prevent more people moving from benefit dependency to work.
Personal advisers will be able to select from a range of programme provision to address the individual needs of our customers. This will include specialist provision, such as Access to Work, offering a grant to disabled people and those with health conditions to help them overcome the particular barriers they face in the workplace, and progress2work and progress2work LinkUP, which have been developed to provide further support for those facing the greatest disadvantages in the labour market, including recovering alcohol misusers, ex-offenders and homeless people.
The seven Jobcentre Plus districts identified to pilot BoND from October 2006 are: Ayrshire, Dumfries, Galloway and Inverclyde; Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire; Cardiff and Vale; Cheshire and Warrington; Cornwall; Northamptonshire, and North East London.
11 Nov 2005 : Column 800W
Seven comparator areas have been chosen using the same criteria, enabling a clear comparison of performance between BoND and comparator areas. The BoND comparator areas are: Highlands, Islands and Clyde Coast; Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire; Staffordshire; Kent; Cumbria; Hampshire and Isle of Wight, and South East London.
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