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8 Feb 2006 : Column 1274W—continued

Illegal Immigration

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps the Government is taking in (a) Romford and (b) Havering to combat illegal immigration; and if he will make a statement. [48556]

Mr. McNulty: Operations are undertaken targeting those who are working here illegally.

Operations are intelligence led. Any information received concerning Romford and the borough of Havering is considered according to priorities and operations set up as necessary.

Immigration and Nationality Directorate

Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he expects to allocate a caseworker to the immigration application of Mr. M. P. B. of Aylesbury (reference B1082715). [47633]

Mr. McNulty: Mr M. P. B. was granted discretionary leave to remain in this country for an initial period of three years on 2 February.

Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Bill

Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the provisions of the Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Bill on the availability of low-skilled workers in the UK. [49433]

Mr. McNulty: The Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Bill is not directly concerned with regulating the admission of migrant workers. The Home Office has prepared regulatory impact assessments in respect of the Bill and these have been placed in the Library of the House. The Government have recently undertaken a consultation exercise on its proposals to introduce a point-based system to manage economic migration to the UK, including the admission of migrants to fill vacancies at low-skill levels. The Government's response to that consultation exercise will be published in due course.

IMPACT System

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when the Impact police intelligence system is due to come into service. [48303]

Hazel Blears: The Impact programme remains on course to deliver a national police information sharing capability over the course of the next five years, as set out in the second progress report on the Bichard Inquiry recommendations published in November last year. The first deliverable—the Impact Nominal Index—was made available in a Child Abuse Investigation Unit in each force in England and Wales on 23 December 2005.

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much has been spent on the national police intelligence system, Impact. [48165]


 
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Hazel Blears: Including spend by PITO during 2004–05, expenditure on the Impact programme to the end of December 2005 totalled £17.2 million.

Methylamphetamine

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps he has taken to control access to the precursors of methamphetamine. [49295]

Paul Goggins: In November 2005 the Advisory Council on the misuse of drugs (ACMD) produced its report on methylamphetamine which included recommendations to control precursors of methylamphetamine.

The ACMD recommended that the precursor chemicals red phosphorus and hydroiodic acid are added to the European drug precursor Legislation.

I have accepted the recommendations in full and we are currently considering how to take these recommendations forward.

Ephedrine and pseudoephedrine are already controlled under European drug precursor legislation.

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will list the street names by which methamphetamine is known. [49297]

Paul Goggins: The report on methylamphetamine by the Advisory Council on the misuse of drugs published in November 2005 identifies a number of street names used for the drug including;

In Thailand the substance is sometimes called Yaba (crazy drug"), and Shabu in Philippines.

The ACMD methylamphetamine report can be downloaded from www.drugs.gov.uk via the ACMD web pages.

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what advice he has received from the police on the classification of methylamphetamine. [49294]

Paul Goggins: Two representatives of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) are full members of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs and contribute their expertise and knowledge of policing issues to the council.
 
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One such representative was a member during ACMD's consideration of methylamphetamine, and was closely involved in, and supportive of, the recommendations made to the Government in the council's report. In addition, I am aware that ACPO are closely monitoring the situation regarding methylamphetamine in the UK and we will continue to seek the views of the police wherever appropriate.

National Asylum Support Service

Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when he next plans to review the work of the National Asylum Support Service. [48669]

Mr. McNulty: An independent review was held into the operation of the National Asylum Support Service in early 2003. The implementation of the review's recommendations has been overseen by a steering group chaired by the director general of the Immigration and Nationality Department. The National Audit Office's report on 'The Provision of Accommodation for Asylum Seekers', published on 7 July 2005, identified improvements which had been made by NASS.

There are no plans for a further review of the kind undertaken in 2003.

Police Finance (Hertfordshire)

Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the cost was at current prices of policing per head of population in Hertfordshire in (a) 1997–98, (b) 2004–05 and (c) 2005–06; and how much of this funding came from (i) council tax, (ii) police grant, (iii) national business rate, (iv) revenue support grant and (v) other funding sources in each year. [44393]

Hazel Blears: The information is set out in the table. The figures are not directly comparable because in April 2000 the area covered by the Hertfordshire police authority was increased as a result of a boundary change with the Metropolitan Police area.

We do not distribute grant to police authorities purely on the basis of population. The police funding formula uses a range of socio-demographic data to reflect reasonably the relative needs of each authority. Grant allocations also take into account the relative resources of each authority. Grant allocations are stabilised by damping changes to limit year-on-year variations.
Cost of policing—Hertfordshire

£
Per head of population
(i) Council tax
(real terms)
(ii) Home Office police grant
(real terms)
(iii) National non-domestic rates
(real terms)
(iv) Revenue support grant
(real terms)
(v) Other funding sources
(real terms)(22)
1997–9824.5963.5523.1615.916.41
2004–0546.2263.7013.6223.8616.46
2005–0647.5564.6615.8721.5618.42


(22) Figures of 'other' income provided by Hertfordshire police.
Notes:
1. Real terms at 2004–05 prices using GDP deflator at 23 December 2005.
2. Approximately half the 'Other' funding for 2004–05 and 2005–06 is from Home Office specific grants.




 
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Police Force Reconfiguration

Mr. Fraser: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether (a) his Department and (b) the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister is responsible for examining the impact of police force mergers in Norfolk on the system of police funding; and if he will make a statement. [38865]

Hazel Blears: A working group led by my Department with participation from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, the Welsh Assembly Government, HM Treasury and police representative bodies has been established to examine the financial aspects of reorganisation, including the impact of restructuring on budgets, grant and council tax.


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