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Chris Ruane: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what percentage of the population is registered to vote in each ward of each constituency in Wales, listed in descending order for each constituency. 
The closest available geography to electoral wards, for which population estimates are available, is Census Area Statistics (CAS) wards. This geography was created for outputs from the 2001 Census and is based mainly on 2003 electoral wards. It is necessary to convert electorate counts to the CAS ward geography and therefore the electorate counts are not necessarily consistent with data published elsewhere.
The latest available population data available at ward level is for mid-2002, published in April 2005. The ward electorate counts are for December 2002 parliamentary electors, including attainers. No adjustment has been made to reflect the difference between these two timepoints. There are a number of wards that are split by parliamentary constituency i.e. they fall within two or more parliamentary constituencies. These are shown by an asterisk * alongside their ward name, and appear under both constituencies (except where the split is across the English/Welsh border). Electorate and population figures for the whole ward are shown. Some wards will therefore be double counted. It is not possible to split the data for these wards.
There is inevitably some double counting of the registered electorate as electoral registration officers vary in how quickly they remove people from the registers after they have moved away from an area or after they have died. In addition, people can register in more than one place.
The population data are estimates and as such are subject to a margin of confidence. This margin of confidence is proportionately larger for ward level estimates than for local authority level estimates. These estimates have been published with the status of experimental statistics". Therefore, the estimates, and figures derived from them, should be treated with some care.
Finally, there a number of other definitional differences between electorates and population estimates. Population estimates include all those usually resident irrespective of nationality, whereas the parliamentary electorate excludes foreign nationals (but Commonwealth and Irish citizens are included). Overseas electors are included in electorate data but not population estimates. Comparable ward counts of local government electors are not readily available.
There is a relatively small number of wards (11) where the electorate counts are more than 10 per cent. greater than the population estimate. The majority of such cases are likely to be attributable to a limitation in the methodology used to convert electorate counts to a CAS ward geography, though the other limitations set out above will also have an effect.
Mr. Alan Williams:
The National Audit Office does not have a general statutory right to examine how the BBC spends licence fee money. However, under an arrangement agreed between the Government and the BBC in 2003, the National Audit Office is undertaking a programme of six value for money reviews, which have
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been commissioned by the BBC Governors' Audit Committee. The expenditure on the BBC's website is not covered by this programme of reviews.
Three of the six reviews have been published to dateon the BBC's investment in Freeview, the White City 2 development, and the performance measurement framework for public service broadcasting. The remaining reviews will cover the BBC's overhead definitions, outsourcing arrangements, and risk management.
Mr. Alan Williams: At its meeting on 13 December the Public Accounts Commission considered a memorandum from the National Audit Office setting out its proposals for securing its future workspace requirements. These had been drawn up taking into account the views expressed during informal discussions between the NAO and myself, as Chairman of the Commission, and the hon. Member for Gainsborough, in his capacity as Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.
The NAO acquired its existing headquarters building in Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1 in 1984 for £11 million, based on a 127 year lease at a peppercorn rent. Its interest in the building is now thought to be worth about £22 million.
a full condition survey of the building in 2003 concluded that the NAO needed to invest significant expenditure in terms of the necessary, and in some cases urgent, renewal of existing elements of the building fabric and services, including the heating and cooling systems, windows, much of the roof covering and other features of a health and safety concern"; these remedial works would need to be carried out within the constraints imposed by the listed status of the central core of the building.
Taking all these options into consideration, the NAO has concluded that a phased programme of refurbishment will provide the best value for money solution, and has approached the Commission both for approval in principle for such a course and for authority to incur expenditure on preparing a detailed design and firm costings.
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The cost of the refurbishment is provisionally estimated at £150 million over 30 years, as against relocation options ranging from £155 to £250 million. The NAO points out, however, that these figures would need to be offset against current annual expenditure on maintaining and operating the existing BPR building of some £4.4 million, which, discounted over 30 years, would equate to about £81 million. So the net cost of all the options should be reduced by that amount.
Expressed in terms of additional net resource requirements (and thus the direct impact on the NAO's Estimate) the NAO's preferred option of refurbishment of the BPR building produces the following estimated figures for years 1 to 3 (although the breakdown between capital and revenue may well change following detailed planning):
By contrast, the relocation options would involve an initial negative capital expenditure, as the cost of any necessary works would be more than offset by the proceeds of the NAO's interest in the current building. Thereafter, however, the stream of annual costs arising from relocation would be significantly greater than those for refurbishmentreflecting mainly the difference between the current peppercorn and future commercial rents.
In preparation for the Commission's meeting on 13 December, both the hon. Member for Gainsborough and myself visited the Buckingham Palace Road site. We saw not only the current cramped layout and run-down condition of the building, but also the results of a trial refurbishment and conversion to open plan operation of part of the sixth floor. This reorganisation of the workspace represents a stark contrast with the rest of the building and we understand it has already shown tentative results in terms of improved staff morale and efficiency.
We reported these findings to the Commission. Having taken oral evidence from the Comptroller and Auditor General and the Assistant Auditor General responsible for the building project, the Commission accepted the NAO's case for a substantial upgrade of its workspace. Specifically, the Commission agreed:
In order to ensure that the NAO's business case is as robust as possible against other options, the Commission has asked it to carry out a cost/benefit analysis of the option of relocating the headquarters building to a north of England location. We have also asked for a detailed explanation of the NAO's reasons for rejecting the option of relocating to a building of similar age on the Civil Estate in London SW1.
The NAO's memorandum setting out its case for the refurbishment option, and the transcript of the evidence given by the Comptroller and Auditor General at the meeting on 13 December are available on the Commission website, at www.parliament.uk
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