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Energy Efficiency

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what assessment his Department has made of the potential for energy efficiency improvements to reduce energy demand in Wales over the next (a) five, (b) 10, (c) 20 and (d) 50 years; and if he will make a statement. [33524]

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Nick Ainger: The Energy Saving Wales Action Plan" sets out the Assembly Government's priorities and plans in respect of energy efficiency in Wales. This is available on the Assembly's website.

The Government's recently announced energy review will focus on policy measures to help deliver objectives, including those on energy efficiency, beyond 2010.

Mental Health

Mr. Pelling: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what steps are taken by his Department to support staff with mental ill-health. [36270]

Mr. Hain: The Wales Office does not have any staff that have identified themselves as having mental ill-health.

However, Wales Office staff are supported during times of illness. They can access occupational health and welfare services to assist them in managing such conditions.


Peter Law: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what areas of (a) employment, (b) manufacture and (c) sports development in Wales he expects will benefit from the London 2012 Olympic Games. [35832]

Mr. Hain: The Government are committed to ensuring that the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games maximise the potential for job creation, training and business growth, leaving a lasting social and economic, as well as physical, legacy for the whole of the UK. This is reflected in the Procurement Principles" published in September which will form the basis of the draft procurement strategy to be adopted by the Olympic Delivery Authority.

Wales is putting in place a regional working group, involving the Welsh Development Agency, Wales Tourist Board and appropriate representatives from the Welsh Assembly Government. This group will develop plans to maximise business and development opportunities for Wales.

I believe that hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games, and events associated with those Games, will inspire the next generation of sportsmen and sportswomen, providing a massive boost to participation at all levels.

Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority

Mr. Crabb: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many prosecutions were brought by the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority in each year since 1980. [37005]

Nick Ainger: The Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority was established as a separate body with effect from 1 April 1996.
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Prosecutions since then have been as follows:
Public rights of wayPlanning

Previously, National Park functions were exercised by Dyfed county council. While definitive records are not available, it is believed that there were no prosecutions in relation to Public Rights of Way between 1980 and 1996. In relation to Planning matters, there was one prosecution in 1993 and three in 1994. Information about the period prior to 1990 is not readily available and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.

Police Forces (Merger)

Dr. Francis: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has had with (a) the Home Secretary, (b) Welsh chief constables and (c) chairs of police authorities on the proposed mergers of police forces in Wales; and if he will make a statement. [37626]

Mr. Hain: I have held discussions with a wide range of stakeholders, including my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary, the four Welsh chief constables and four police authority chairs.

I see no realistic alternative to a single force for Wales if the objectives set out in the report by Her Majesty's inspectorate of constabulary are to be achieved. However, decisions will not be made until we have final recommendations from the police service. These are due to be submitted on 23 December.

Public Relations

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what the value was of (a) public opinion research and (b) public relations contracts issued by his Department in 2004–05. [36010]

Mr. Hain: The Wales Office did not carry out any public opinion research or issue any public relations contracts in 2004–05.


Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much was paid by his Department in rates in 2004–05, broken down by local authority; and how much was paid in rates in 2004–05 in London. [36003]

Mr. Hain: During financial year 2004–05 the Wales Office paid rates to Cardiff city council amounting to £33,222 and £48,222 to the City of Westminster.
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Renewable Energy

Peter Law: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he will ensure that the decorative lights on departmental Christmas trees are powered by electricity from renewable sources of power. [35768]

Mr. Hain: The Wales Office was established from 1 July 1999. I refer the hon. Member to the answer previously given on 31 October 2005, Official Report, column 742W, to the hon. Member for Ceredigion (Mark Williams).


Mr. MacNeil: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much has been spent by his Department on taxi travel in the 2005–06 financial year; and what proportion of such travel was undertaken in each nation and region of the United Kingdom, including London. [37472]

Mr. Hain: Since the beginning of financial year 2005–06, the year to date spend for taxi travel undertaken by the Wales Office is £2,457.

To provide spending by nation or region would be at a disproportionate cost.

Winter Deaths

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has had with his colleagues in (a) the Cabinet and (b) the National Assembly for Wales regarding the excess winter deaths of those aged over 65 years in Wales. [33916]

Mr. Hain: I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave to the Member for Wellingborough on 6 December 2005, Official Report, column 1178W.


Benefits Take-up

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many and what percentage of pensioners in (a) the UK, (b) England, (c) Wales and (d) Scotland are (i) entitled to and (ii) receiving one or more of pension credit, council tax benefit and housing benefit; and if he will make a statement. [34738]

Mr. Timms: The information is not available in the format requested.

The latest available information on the numbers entitled to income related benefits is in Income Related Benefits Estimates of Take Up in 2002/2003", a copy of which is in the Library.

The numbers receiving these benefits are in the following tables.
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Housing benefit (HB) and council tax benefit (CTB) recipients aged 60 and over and pension credit (PC)recipients by country: May 2005

CaseloadPopulation (percentage)CaseloadPopulation (percentage)CaseloadPopulation (percentage)
Great Britain1,518,10012.42,444,50019.92,680,20021.8

Housing benefit (HB) and council tax benefit (CTB) recipients aged 60 and over also in receipt of pension credit (PC) by country: May 2005

HB(27) and PC
CTB(27) and PC
CaseloadPopulation (percentage)CaseloadPopulation (percentage)
Great Britain1,237,50010.11,972,10016.1

n/a = Not applicable.
(26)'Unknown" relates to cases allocated an incorrect postcode, which cannot be assigned to a country or region.
(27)Figures may include a small number of men aged 60–64 in receipt of income-based Jobseekers Allowance.
1.The data refers to benefit units, which may be a single person or a couple.
2.Case loads have been rounded to the nearest hundred and expressed in thousands and percentages have been given to 1 decimal place.
3.For HB/CTB, figures for any non-responding authorities have been estimated.
4 Housing benefit figures exclude any extended payment cases.
5.Council tax benefit totals exclude any second adult rebate cases.
6.Pension credit replaced MIG on the 6 October 2003 and extended IS entitlement to customers aged 60+.
7.Countries are assigned by matching postcodes against the relevant ONS postcode directory.
8.Population percentages have been calculated using 2004 ONS mid-year population estimates.
9 Aged 60 and over" is defined as benefit units where the claimant and/or partner are aged 60 and over. Therefore figures will contain some claimants aged under 60 where there is a partner aged over 60 years.
10. Percentages of the population are based on the population aged 60+.
1.Housing Benefit and Council Tax Benefit Management Information System Quarterly 100 per cent. caseload stock-count taken in May 2005.
2.DWP Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study (WPLS).
3.Office for National Statistics (ONS) mid-2004 population estimates.

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